Skip to Content

Film (MA)

MA|Postgraduate Taught


Entry year
Entry requirements
1 year (Full Time)
3 years (Part Time)
Places available
TBC (Full Time)
TBC (Part Time)
This course is now closed to applications for September 2021. If you are interested in September 2022 entry, please register your interest.
  • Overview

    Film is the most important mass medium and art form of modern times. Shaping our modes of perception and communication, it is popular in its appeal and radical in its practices. It has transformed our ways of seeing and storytelling. Film-making and criticism is an area of immense interest, pleasure, and creativity. Supported by state-of-the-art film teaching and production facilities, the MA in Film at Queen's aims to offer a rich, diverse curriculum designed to enable students to specialise in practice-based and critical approaches to film, and other media arts.
    In particular, students will develop skills in the analysis of film and media arts and apply these skills in the production of creative projects, and critical work. Throughout the programme, students will acquire basic or enhanced film production skills. They will also acquire transferable skills valued by employers: creative thinking, verbal and visual communication, problem solving, project management, and teamwork.

    Film highlights

    Professional Accreditations

    • We are an Avid Learning Partner, and Film students are offered the opportunity to become certified in the use of Media Composer video editing, an industry qualification and valuable addition to any CV.

    Industry Links

    • Strong contacts with the local film and broadcast industry, enabling us to organise regular meetings with industry professionals, workshops for students interested in a career in film and the creative industries.

    World Class Facilities

    • State-of-the-art digital production and post-production facilities, as well as substantial lighting and grips kits, and a new purpose-built 'black box', giving students the opportunity to film in a multi-purpose, professionally equipped studio.
    • Screenings, lectures, and seminars are held in Screen 2 of the Drama and Film Centre - the newly refurbished cinema we share with Northern Ireland's leading independent cinema, the Queen's Film Theatre (QFT).
  • Course content

    Course Structure

    Full-time students

    For full-time students the MA Film degree runs September to September, with graduation normally in December. Full-time students take a total of three modules (60 credits in total) per semester.

    In semester one, full-time students take FLM7018 Research Skills in Film I (compulsory), plus two additional modules.
    In semester two, full-time students take FLM7019 Research Skills in Film II (compulsory), plus two additional modules.

    The FLM7005 SUM Dissertation module is taken in the summer (June to September). To be awarded the MA degree, students must achieve a pass mark in 120 taught module credits and the 60-credit Dissertation module. The Dissertation module includes the major creative project as one option.

    In summary, the MA in Film degree for full time students consists of the following:
    Semester one:
    FLM7018 Research Skills in Film I (compulsory)
    Plus two additional modules

    Semester two:
    FLM7019 Research Skills in Film II (compulsory)
    Plus two additional modules

    Summer (June to September):
    FLM7005 SUM Dissertation (compulsory, 60 credits).
    The major creative project is offered as one option within the Dissertation module.

    Part-time students
    Part-time students may complete the MA Film degree in two or three years. For part-time students, FLM7018 must be completed in year one, and FLM7019 in year two. Part-time students take three modules per year (60 credits per year), followed by the Dissertation module (60 credit module). The Dissertation includes the major creative project as one option.
    To be awarded the MA degree, students must achieve a pass mark in 120 taught module credits and the 60-credit Dissertation module.

    Year one:
    FLM7018 Research Skills in Film I (compulsory)
    and two additional modules.

    Year two:
    FLM7019 Research Skills in Film II (compulsory)
    and two additional modules.

    For part time students, FLM7005 Dissertation (60 credits) is taken the summer of year two (FLM7005 SUM), or in a third year (FLM7005 FYR).

    Exit qualifications are available: Students may exit with a Postgraduate Certificate by successfully completing 60 credits of taught modules, including FLM7018. Students may exit with a Postgraduate Diploma by successfully completing 120 CATS points from taught modules.

    Compulsory ModulesFLM7018 Research Skills in Film I (20 credits, compulsory)
    FLM7019 Research Skills in Film II (20 credits, compulsory)
    FLM7005 SUM Dissertation or FLM7005 FYR Dissertation (60 credits, compulsory).
    Module content

    FLM7018 and FLM7019 enhance key skills in areas including academic writing, referencing, research processes, and audiovisual practices. The two modules explore key concepts in filmmaking, and methodologies in film studies research, including practice as research.

    An important aspect of FLM7019 involves developing a proposal for the dissertation.
    For FLM7005 Dissertation (60 credits), students work independently to develop and realise a substantial research project, with the guidance of an assigned supervisor. This may take the form of a traditional written dissertation, a short film with reflective essay, or a screenplay with reflective essay, in accordance with the requirements specified for the module.
    Optional ModulesModules are subject to change. Not all modules will be available every year.
    FLM7008 Film Practice
    FLM7010 Screenwriting
    FLM7012 Political Film: Form and Conflict
    FLM7013 Film Industries and Digital Cultures
    FLM7016 Avant-Garde and Experimental Filmmaking
    FLM7017 Censorship, Regulation and Audiences
    FLM7020 The Film Soundtrack.

    Module descriptions
    FLM7008 Film Practice (20 credits; creative practice)
    This is a practice-based course on the methods, processes and creative competencies involved in the development of a film project. The emphasis in the module is on the combination of theory and practice within a workshop setting to develop project ideas into a coherent form that can be successfully researched, shot, edited and exhibited. Accordingly, the course uses different modes of teaching and learning which are designed to complement each other in order to develop skills and awareness of the development and management of film projects in preparation for production.

    FLM7010 Screenwriting (20 credits; creative practice)
    This is a practice-based course covering the methods, processes and research techniques involved in the development of a screenplay, with a particular focus on the short film format. The course uses different modes of teaching and learning which are designed to complement each other in order to develop skills and awareness of the writing process. Students are encouraged and enabled to develop material through a series of writing exercises and assignments. Moreover, they are introduced to different approaches, formulae and guiding principles recommended for successful screenwriting. Class time involves workshops, screenings and script analyses. Students will explore the conceptual and practical aspects of screenplay writing underpinned by in-depth class discussion and feedback. As well as contributing to discussions during class, students are expected to support their colleagues by offering constructive critiques of each other’s work as well as by actively participating in script readings and workshops as the semester goes on.

    FLM7012: Political Film: Form and Conflict (20 credits)
    In tracing the relations between film and political conflict, this module examines how images – representations – of society have competed for significance at different historical moments, from the revolutionary experiments of the early twentieth century to the radical counter-cultures 1960s, and beyond. Throughout the module students study a range of international films, addressing such questions as: How has film language been extended and transformed by the pressure of contemporary political commitments and social circumstances? How effective are different approaches to political filmmaking (propagandistic, realistic, allegorical, satirical, essayistic, avant-garde, etc.)? Is it ever possible for filmmakers to articulate an authentically radical – dissident, even – political vision by means of conventional and essentially conservative film forms? Does a corrupt polity or repressive state necessarily discredit films made under its influence, or auspices? How important are filmmaking groups or collectives to the ideological integrity of political cinema? How important is the distribution history of a particular film to an assessment of its political significance? What does it mean to make films politically?

    FLM7013: Film Industries and Digital Cultures (20 credits)
    This module aims to introduce students to the various practices of film industry through a specific focus on European cinema. Methods and theories supporting the critical study of media industries through a series of case studies covering such topics as the marketing, critical reception, distribution and exhibition of films, looking in particular at the impact of the digitalisation. In doing so, the course will also cover theories of national and transnational cinemas, globalization, marketing and production studies. Students on this module will engage with theorisations of the production, promotion circulation and reception of cinema, and will be required to analyse both theoretical texts and primary source materials in order to gain fuller understanding of these topics.
    This module also provides an overview of the methodological issues involved in the actual practice of carrying out research projects on the topics discussed. Students will learn about the various industrial approaches to understanding films and filmmakers, and gain the study skills necessary to conduct their own research project.

    FLM7016 Avant-Garde and Experimental Filmmaking (20 credits; creative practice)
    This module is intended to develop students’ creative skills and conceptual understanding of experimental filmmaking. The class is built around the development and production of a short experimental film.
    We’ll begin by exploring how we can characterise or define experimental film. We will then consider important historical forms of experimental film, which may include essay, lyrical, and/or landscape films, looking closely at examples. By understanding the ideas, approaches and techniques of filmmakers working in these forms, we will seek to extend and develop our own filmmaking practices, and formulate a project for production in class. After this, we will focus on particular areas of moving image practice, including image making and sound recording, and develop our craft skills in these areas as appropriate. An important aspect of the class will be presenting and discussing student work.

    FLM7017 Censorship, Regulation and Audiences (20 credits)
    This module will introduce students to the various practices of audience and reception studies, and the debates surrounding film censorship and the regulation of cinema. It will explore how film censorship works both as a concept and in practice. It will use controversial examples to explore representation of different taboos including sex, violence, religion and language. In doing so it will also pay significant attention to the role of the audience; it will explore how audience responses to specific films change over time, how liberalising trends in society affect responses to cinema, and the framework of regulation which limits or controls access to particular films. Related topics which will be explored include art house cinema audiences, fandom, cult cinema and spectatorship. Additionally the practices and methods of conducting audience research will be explored to consider how such research can help us to understand the experiences of viewing and to help us better understand the relationship between audience members and film texts. This module provides an overview of the methodological issues involved in the actual practice of carrying out research projects on the topics discussed. Students will gain the study skills necessary to conduct their own audience research project, as well as gaining presentation skills experience.

    FLM7020 The Film Soundtrack (20 credits)
    This module serves as a guide to the film soundtrack offering a critical overview of its history, technical processes, aesthetics and key theoretical approaches in order to elucidate its expressive and narrative potential. In addition to delineating the processes of production and post-production, it explores the nuances of the film soundtrack, examining how its various elements such as dialogue, sound effects, foley sound, environmental recordings, soundscapes and music coalesce to form a complex audiovisual relationship with the image. Further to this, it will also explore key scholarly approaches to film sound in order to enhance critical understanding of film.

    People teaching you



    Senior Lecturer


    Teaching Times

    Morning, Afternoon and Evening. Part Time mode of study is over two or three academic years.

    Career Prospects

    This MA programme provides a qualification and professional development opportunities ideally suited to a career in film, television and other moving-image and broadcast media. It is also popular with students intending to or already working in education, research, and the wider creative industries sector.
    Recent graduates from this programme have gone on to work as freelance filmmakers, script editors, assistant producers, programme researchers, schedule coordinators, and teaching posts in Film and Moving Image Arts.

    Learning and Teaching



    Each module involves a weekly session of two to four hours, consisting of a mixture of lectures, seminars, workshops, and/or screenings.


    Assessments associated with the course are outlined below:

    Written assignments



    Practice-based exercises and projects

    Dissertation: students may choose to undertake a 15,000 word dissertation; or a short film with accompanying essay; or a screenplay with an accompanying essay; or an alternative creative project agreed with programme convenor and designated supervisor, with an accompanying essay. Written dissertations, creative projects and accompanying essays must be in accordance with the parameters specified for the FLM7005 module, including wordcounts.

  • Entry Requirements

    Entrance requirements

    Normally a 2.1 Honours degree or above or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences or a cognate discipline.

    A 2.2 Honours degree or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University may be considered if an applicant can demonstrate recent professional/exhibition experience in filmmaking, photography, or video arts, subject to portfolio submission and interview. The University's Recognition of Prior Learning Policy provides guidance on the assessment of experiential learning (RPEL). Please visit for more information.

    Applicants are advised to apply as early as possible and ideally no later than 12th August 2022 for courses which commence in late September. In the event that any programme receives a high number of applications, the University reserves the right to close the application portal. Notifications to this effect will appear on the Direct Application Portal against the programme application page.

    International Students

    Our country/region pages include information on entry requirements, tuition fees, scholarships, student profiles, upcoming events and contacts for your country/region. Use the dropdown list below for specific information for your country/region.

    English Language Requirements

    Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 5.5 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required. *Taken within the last 2 years.

    International students wishing to apply to Queen's University Belfast (and for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their course of study or research. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes.

    For more information on English Language requirements for EEA and non-EEA nationals see:

    If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this degree programme, INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for admission to this degree.

    • Academic English: an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
    • Pre-sessional English: a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English.

    INTO - English Language Course(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)

  • Fees and Funding

    Tuition Fees

    Northern Ireland (NI) 1 £6,650
    Republic of Ireland (ROI) 2 £6,650
    England, Scotland or Wales (GB) 1 £7,470
    EU Other 3 £18,200
    International £18,200

    1 EU citizens in the EU Settlement Scheme, with settled status, will be charged the NI or GB tuition fee based on where they are ordinarily resident. Students who are ROI nationals resident in GB will be charged the GB fee.

    2 EU students who are ROI nationals resident in ROI are eligible for NI tuition fees, in line with the Common Travel Agreement arrangements.

    3 EU Other students (excludes Republic of Ireland nationals living in GB, NI or ROI) are charged tuition fees in line with international fees.

    All tuition fees quoted are for the academic year 2022-23, and relate to a single year of study unless stated otherwise. Tuition fees will be subject to an annual inflationary increase, unless explicitly stated otherwise.

    More information on postgraduate tuition fees.

    Additional course costs

    All Students

    Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs which are not covered by tuition fees, which students will need to consider when planning their studies.

    Students can borrow books and access online learning resources from any Queen's library. If students wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow them from the University Library, prices per text can range from £30 to £100. Students should also budget between £30 to £75 per year for photocopying, memory sticks and printing charges.

    Students undertaking a period of work placement or study abroad, as either a compulsory or optional part of their programme, should be aware that they will have to fund additional travel and living costs.

    If a programme includes a major project or dissertation, there may be costs associated with transport, accommodation and/or materials. The amount will depend on the project chosen. There may also be additional costs for printing and binding.

    Students may wish to consider purchasing an electronic device; costs will vary depending on the specification of the model chosen.

    There are also additional charges for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.

    Film costs

    Students may incur costs attending and travelling to performances. The estimated maximum cost is £100 per year. Students may also incur some costs for props or costumes.

    How do I fund my study?

    The Department for the Economy will provide a tuition fee loan of up to £5,500 per NI / EU student for postgraduate study. Tuition fee loan information.

    A postgraduate loans system in the UK offers government-backed student loans of up to £10,609 for taught and research Masters courses in all subject areas. Criteria, eligibility, repayment and application information are available on the UK government website.

    More information on funding options and financial assistance.

    International Scholarships

    Information on scholarships for international students, is available at

  • Apply

    How to Apply

    Apply using our online Postgraduate Applications Portal and follow the step-by-step instructions on how to apply.

    Apply now

    When to Apply

    The deadline for applications is normally 30th June 2021. In the event that any programme receives a high volume of applications, the university reserves the right to close the application portal earlier than 30th June deadline. Notifications to this effect will appear on the Direct Entry Portal (DAP) against the programme application page.

    Terms and Conditions

    The terms and conditions that apply when you accept an offer of a place at the University on a taught programme of study.
    Queen's University Belfast Terms and Conditions.

    Download a prospectus