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MA Film and Television Production with Cinematography

Visual storytelling: train for a career in film and television

Year of entry: 2024 (September)


1 year full-time

Start date

September 2024 (semester dates)

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Visualise and create stories for screen. Combine art and science, theory and practice to explore all aspects of cinematography for single-camera film and television production.

While learning the technical, practical and aesthetic principles of lighting and camerawork, you'll work with industry-standard equipment, in our creative and supportive environment. You’ll gain theoretical and technical experience and will develop and shoot your own project to high professional standards.

We'll teach you through a mix of workshops, lectures, screenings and masterclasses with leading academics and industry professionals. Our focus on practical group projects, with hands-on work, will prepare you for a career collaborating with others on set and on location.

You'll develop essential expertise for meeting the challenges of a career in film and television. Our graduates have gone on to roles in British and European film industries, and in film, TV and commercial production in China, Latin America and the Middle East.


This course is industry recognised by ScreenSkills, the industry-led skills body for the UK's screen-based industries, and carries the ScreenSkills Select quality-mark which indicates courses best suited to prepare students for a career in the screen industries. The accreditation means that our students learn professional skills on courses approved and supported by the industry; and it gives access to various schemes, eg internships and traineeships with the BBC, ITV and other broadcasters, as well as independent production companies in British film and television.

Unique creative environment

Bringing together world-leading researchers, dynamic teachers and industry professionals in a vibrant community.

Employment prospects

Experience industry-standard training and creative practice, and use the latest professional kit to advance your skills for your future career.

Course content

From lighting theory and design, and camera technology and operation, to studio and location production methods including grips and electrics, you'll develop your skills in cinematography.

You'll study the practical, creative and business aspects of production for film and television. Our modules cover essential critical analysis, and you'll gain a greater understanding of the theory behind composition, lighting and making creative choices. 

As you learn the cinematographer's role in creating screen-based stories for factual or fictional productions, you'll advance your knowledge of the industry and collaborate with others to develop and shoot projects. Group work is an essential experience for the production process, enhancing your communication, problem-solving, project and resource management skills.

You'll also be able to follow your creative interests and ambition with your individual project over the summer and vacation, worth a third of the course credits. 


You’ll study 5 core modules, including an extended individual project over the Summer period.

Our modules will give you an aesthetic and technical grounding in visual storytelling, for both fiction and non-fiction productions, developed with the skilled use of our ARRI, RED and Sony camera systems on your core Digital Cinematography I and II modules. All our modules stress the importance of creative and technical collaboration within the creative process, and provide you with opportunities to work closely with like-minded students developing original content.

Core Modules:

Option modules:

You will also study one option module each semester. 

The options available to you will be confirmed later in the year. For further information please get in touch.

Our modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff, and in line with Department/School academic planning.


The course culminates in the design and development of individual piece of work and accompanying report.  It's the most important and also the most challenging part of the course.

Individual Project 

You may choose from two different types of individual project:

1) A production project that involves creating a short film or pilot television episode – either fiction or nonfiction – along with a written 6,000 word production report describing your approach to making the project in your role as a cinematographer. You can work either individually or collaboratively with other students on this type of project.

2) An individual research project focusing on a specific area related directly to your chosen specialism. This could take the form of a traditional written dissertation of 6,500 words or a hybrid involving the creation of some sort of artefact such as video, audio or written elements based on your research, along with a 6,000 word written dissertation describing the project.

In all cases, the precise nature of the project undertaken, including the involvement of any group members or other collaborators, will be agreed with your academic supervisor prior to the start of the project.

The York approach

Every course at York is built on a distinctive set of learning outcomes. These will give you a clear understanding of what you will be able to accomplish at the end of the course and help you explain what you can offer employers. Our academics identify the knowledge, skills, and experiences you'll need upon graduation and then design the course to get you there.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  • Carry out single-camera film and television production to a professional standard by employing an in-depth knowledge of the processes of cinematography to create effective screen-based stories.
  • Exercise critical judgement and intellectual rigour in approaching complex creative challenges and opportunities. Be able to communicate clearly and persuasively using appropriate written, oral and visual media.
  • Work independently in initiating and developing high quality works by applying a range of creative, technical and practical skills related to cinematography.
  • Work collaboratively – as leader or team member – in producing high quality works, in line with current industry practices and standards.
  • Deploy confidently a range of industry standard digital technologies to produce creative works initiated by yourself and others.
  • Creatively apply the practical and technical components of cinematography – with an understanding of how it relates to and informs different component parts of production (eg directing, sound and editing) – to the art of cinematic fiction and non-fiction storytelling.
  • Apply transferrable skills in a range of contexts relevant beyond media production.

I am a postgraduate student studying television and filmmaking production with cinematography at York University. The year at TFTI offered us a wealth of practical opportunities and has created unparalleled memories. We became masters of cinematography, with cameras and lights sculpting the art of light and shadow. Recently, my independent documentary film was officially selected by several film festivals under the editing guidance of the editing tutor. Gradually I have found my career goal during this year of study.

Yu Wang (Yvonne), MA Film and Television Production with Cinematography

Fees and funding

Annual tuition fees for 2024/25

Study modeUK (home)International and EU
Full-time (1 year) £12,480£29,400

Students on a Student Visa are not currently permitted to study part-time at York.

Fees information

UK (home) or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK (home) or international student. Check your fee status.

Find out more information about tuition fees and how to pay them.

Funding information

Discover your funding options to help with tuition fees and living costs.

We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2024/25 throughout the year.

If you've successfully completed an undergraduate degree at York you could be eligible for a 10% Masters fee discount.

Funding opportunities

School scholarship information

Living costs

You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.

Creative collaboration

You'll have the chance to work collaboratively with other students from all our film and TV Masters courses. Group project work will develop your skills to prepare you for an industry where you will often work with others to achieve your creative vision.

Teaching and assessment

You’ll work with world‐leading academics who’ll challenge you to think independently and excel in all that you do. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace.

Teaching format

The course involves a range of different teaching styles. Most modules will include lectures to give you a fundamental understanding of the subject and then lead on to practical work. The practical work will primarily involve workshops where you can become familiar with industry techniques and equipment, including lighting, grips and cameras. You may also attend film screenings.

You'll also have the opportunity to attend events such as talks, productions and festivals outside of your modules.

You'll be assigned a member of our teaching staff who will act as your personal supervisor for the duration of the course. They are there to give advice on academic matters as well as other areas of University life.


The equipment and facilities available are the highest quality found in professional film and programme making.

You'll have access to various camera systems from ARRI, RED and Sony, as well as Angenieux, Zeiss, Sony, RED, Sigma and Samyang lenses; industry-standard lighting, grips and sound equipment from the likes of ARRI, Kino-Flo, Sachtler, Ronford-Baker, O'Connor, Manfrotto, Sound Devices, AKG, etc.; as well as fully equipped sound stages, rehearsal rooms, TV studios, green screen stages, dressing rooms, props store and workshop, and picture and sound finishing suites (including Foley and ADR).

You'll also have 24/7 access to a postproduction suite exclusively for our postgraduate students.

Discover our facilities

Teaching location

You will be based at the School of Arts and Creative Technologies on Campus East.

Most of your contact hours will be here, with some additional teaching elsewhere on Campus East.

About our campus

Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.

Assessment and feedback

You'll be assessed throughout your course. Some modules have an early assessment that contributes a small amount to your final mark and gives an opportunity to check your progress.

Types of assessment vary depending on the module and may include the following:

  • In-class tests
  • Presentations and pitches
  • Essays and reflective reports
  • Group and individual projects to explore lighting and composition
  • Blocking exercises
  • Group projects working with others across the department to create short film projects
  • 7,000-8,000 word project dissertation that could include practical work and/or creation of a short film.


Careers and skills

A large number of our graduates have made striking progress in their careers since completing their course. There’s a wide variety of possible career paths open to you after completing this MA, both across industry and academia. While you train to be a professional in television and film you'll also develop skills that are useful in any industry.

Career opportunities

  • Lighting technician or electrician
  • Camera operator or assistant
  • Cinematographer
  • Producer (including production management)
  • Film and television script developer and supervisor
  • Editor for film, television and online distribution
  • Director

Transferable skills

  • Collaborative working
  • Problem solving
  • Investigative research
  • Time management and organisation
  • Technical analysis
  • Critical evaluation
  • Reflective learning

Entry requirements

Typical offer
Undergraduate degree 2:1 or equivalent, and evidence of professional experience or a commitment to film making. If you hold a qualification below 2:1 or equivalent, relevant prior experience of an appropriate nature, may be considered.
International pre-masters programme Pre-masters from our International Pathway College
Other international qualifications Equivalent qualifications from your country

Additional requirements

You will need to submit a sample of your creative work with your application. Please see our guidance on submitting creative work.

English language

If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:

Minimum requirement
IELTS (Academic and Indicator) 6.5, minimum 6.0 in each component
Cambridge CEFR B2 First: 176, with 169 in each component
Oxford ELLT 7, minimum of 6 in each component
Duolingo 120, minimum 105 in all other components
LanguageCert SELT B2 with 33/50 in each component
LanguageCert Academic 70 with a minimum of 65 in each component
KITE 459-494, with 426-458 in all other components
Skills for English B2: Merit overall, with Pass with Merit in each component
PTE Academic 61, minimum 55 in each component
TOEFL 87, minimum of 21 in each component
Trinity ISE III Merit in all requirements

For more information see our postgraduate English language requirements.

If you haven't met our English language requirements

You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.

The length of course you need to take depends on your current English language test scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.

After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.


You can apply and send all your documentation online. You don’t need to complete your application all at once: you can start it, save it and finish it later.

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