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MA Filmmaking (by research)

Explore your filmmaking interests within a research context, guided by an expert within the field.

  Length Start dates (semester dates)
MA by research

1 year full-time
2 years part-time

Apply for MA by research


Unleash your creativity and innovation within a research context, guided by an expert within the field with the MA Filmmaking by research.

This degree encompasses all phases of development, preproduction, production and postproduction of a short film or television pilot (20-30 minutes). You will also submit an analytical essay of 3,000-5,000 words to set your creative work within its research context.

The MA by Research in Filmmaking has no taught element. You will work independently with support from your academic supervisor.

This degree is particularly aimed at individuals who wish to develop advanced research skills to enhance their undergraduate degree and/or as a prelude to developing a research-based career. As such, whilst counting as a research degree in its own right, this Masters by research may enable you to transfer to PhD study. This is provided your filmmaking project is of a sufficiently high standard and has the potential to be explored in greater depth.

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You will be supported by an academic supervisor. They will normally share or complement your research and film-making interests.

Course location

This course is run by the School of Arts and Creative Technologies.

You'll be based in the School of Arts and Creative Technologies on Campus East. Most of our facilities and supervisory staff are housed here.

Entry requirements

You will normally be expected to have at least a 2:1 undergraduate degree or equivalent qualification. You may be invited for an interview and asked to send samples of your creative practice work.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must provide evidence of your ability.

English language requirements


Apply for the MA in Filmmaking by research

Find out more about how to apply.

You will require the following supporting documents:

  • Application form
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  • Degree transcript
  • Two references
  • Research proposal
  • Sample work

We will require the submission of sample work (for example a portfolio of short films, television projects etc.) to give us a sense of your filmmaking skills and knowledge of the process. This can be via web links to a service such as Vimeo or YouTube, or via physical media (but we would prefer the former method). 

You will further need to provide a proposal as to the film you would be looking to create over the year. This should include a basic story idea and outline of how you would approach production. A major part of the course involves script development so we are not looking for ideas that are necessarily finished but rather want to confirm that you have a clear sense of what you are looking to do with a reasonably realistic view of how it can be done. Note that more than one film may be produced as part of the degree depending on the proposal. For example, it may be possible to produce a number of very short pieces around a common theme. 

We will consider each proposal based on its objectives and merits.

Careers and skills

The MA Filmmaking by research course will help to extend your knowledge of the film industry, develop network connections, gain access to film equipment and facilities and build up your creative portfolio and skills. You will develop your collaborative working, creative thinking, technical analysis and investigative research skills, opening the door to a wide range of career opportunities.

Our dedicated careers team offer specific support including a programme of professional researcher development and careers workshops and 1:1 career support sessions. They will help you to build up your employability portfolio and to engage in activities that will build up your skills and experience within and outside of your research work.

Career opportunities

  • Production manager
  • Film and television production
  • Script developer/supervisor
  • Feature film editor
  • Lighting and camera technician
  • Academic researcher
  • Director
  • Freelance film work
  • Audio-visual technician

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Connect with researchers across all disciplines to get the most out of your research project.

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