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Free Online Cinematography Classes, Lessons & Course Materials

See our list of the top free online cinematography courses. Learn about what courses are available, what topics they cover and whether you can use them to get college credit.

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Free Online Cinematography Course Info

The following free online courses don't offer college credits or access to instructors. Due to the hands-on nature of film production and cinematography, the materials available online sometimes are not the same as those in the original courses. Users also may need to download specific software programs like iTunes to access all available resources. However, users won't need to register, make tuition payments or attend classes at set times.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Cinematography and Film Production
  • Film and Cinema Studies
  • Photography

Free Online Cinematography Class List

New Jersey Institute of Technology

  • Documentary Studies examines the process of making documentaries through 10 video lectures. The original course required students to complete their own documentary projects. In order to be successful in this course, learners can benefit from having backgrounds in English, social science and history. Students should be prepared to purchase 7 texts in order to complete the readings.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

  • Introduction to Video looks at recording and editing videos as tools for personal expression. Learners need access to a digital video camera and Final Cut Pro® software to complete the film projects. Students also might want to buy the listed textbooks in order to complete readings. Aspiring cinematographers have access to several project examples for reference purposes.
  • Studies in Film looks at the relationships between literature and film, with the assistance of multiple purchased or borrowed books and movies. PDF-format study materials are available for all 11 units. Examining the important narrative techniques embedded in films can help those who are looking to become filmmakers.
  • Understanding Television examines the evolution of the technology and culture behind American television. Readings rely on 3 required texts, article selections and additional recommended sources; viewings of older television programs might also be necessary. Students have access to assignments and sample examinations.

New Mexico State University

  • Movie Making Basics covers makeup artist tips, making a movie with no budget, film-scoring tips, editing for commercials and tips for screenwriting. Some of the videos provide screenshots that can show students how to use editing and screenwriting tools.

Tufts University

  • Producing Films for Social Change shows students how to make documentary films on a variety of social issues. The course covers topics like camera filming, directing and interviewing skills. The course provides a class schedule with assignments, as well as examples of student work. Some assignments in the original class may not be applicable to free online users.

Wesleyan University

  • Western Movies: Myth, Ideology and Genre surveys the development of the Western genre and the myth of the frontier. The 18 video lectures on iTunes focus on the cultural and historical contexts related to a wide assortment of Western movies. The course can assist those who are looking to produce genre films.

University of South Wales

  • Film Production investigates the roles of film directors and producers. Students may access the 5 audio podcasts through iTunes. The resources contain interviews with filmmakers on how they've produced, marketed and distributed their films.
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Popular Schools

The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

  • What is your highest level of education?

    • Master of Arts in Film and TV
    • Master of Arts in Film and TV - Producing
    • Master of Arts in Film and TV - Script Writing
    • Master of Fine Arts in Script and Screenwriting
    • Master of Arts in Communication - Media & Arts Management and Promotion

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    • B.S. General Studies - Fine Arts
    • A.S. General Studies - Fine Arts

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    • Associate in Arts (AA)

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