BA in Film Studies: Info on Bachelor's Degree Programs

Within a film studies bachelor's degree program, students learn to analyze the content of films. Programs also offer substantial coursework in moviemaking, often discussing digital and analog filmmaking techniques.

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Essential Information

To qualify for a four-year Bachelor of Arts in Film Studies program, applicants need to hold a high school diploma and possess strong creative and analytical skills. High school courses in creative writing, literature and the visual arts can prepare prospective enrollees for film studies coursework.

Since most film programs cover digital photography and editing, incoming students with previous computer experience may have an advantage over those with no computer skills. In addition, professional experience or a portfolio of independent work may also make candidates more admissible.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

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

Bachelor of Arts in Film Studies

Bachelor's degree programs combine training in the liberal arts with classes on cinematic technology and theory. Classes emphasize all aspects of cinema, including screenwriting, cinematography, film theory and post-production. Students gain a broad overview so that they can completely understand the art and industry, and then determine their own areas of interest.

Most film studies programs offer classroom instruction supplemented by hands-on filmmaking projects, even if students do not ultimately intend to make movies. Students get experience using modern technology, such as hard equipment and computer software. Internships are also typically a core component of bachelor's studies. The topics listed below are usually discussed:

  • Film editing
  • Digital cinematography
  • Screenwriting
  • Cinematic history
  • Film production

Popular Career Options

Graduates with a B.A. in Film Studies are qualified for careers in film production and criticism. They can find a variety of creative, technical or theoretical careers. Options in the industry include:

  • Film critic
  • Production assistant
  • Screenwriter
  • Film director
  • Film theorist

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of film and video editors and camera operators will increase 11 percent from 2014 to 2024, which is faster than average compared to other occupations. Producers and directors will see a job growth of 9 percent. Based on 2015 BLS reports, film and video editors made an annual median salary of $55,740, while producers and directors earned $68,440.

Continuing Education Information

Many schools offer graduate programs in film studies at the master's and doctoral degree levels as well. Some of these programs emphasize a particular technical aspect of filmmaking, such as cinematography, screenwriting or editing. Other programs mainly cover the theoretical and critical facets of cinema, preparing graduates for careers in academia and film theory.

Creative and analytical individuals with a passion for film can build a solid professional foundation by enrolling in a four-year film study bachelor's degree program, which offers in-depth theoretical courses and direct experience in filmmaking.

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