UCL was the first university to establish a Film Studies Programme in the UK. We have particular research strengths in cinema history and in an exceptionally broad range of cinemas. Our core faculty utilise a wide array of theoretical approaches to screen media in the classroom and in their research: from film theory and political economy to cultural studies and critical media studies. We offer modules in cinemas from Europe, East Asia, Africa and the Americas.
Modes and duration
Tuition fees (2021/22)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.
Fee deposit: All full time students are required to pay a fee deposit of £1,000 for this programme. All part-time students are required to pay a fee deposit of £500.
A minimum of an upper second-class Honours degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.
The English language level for this programme is: Advanced
UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
About this degree
The programme covers the history of cinema and a wide variety of global cinemas, and related conceptual approaches to the study of screen media. It is designed to provide students with advanced knowledge of both the history of cinema and media and its contemporary developments, and with the skills, concepts, methods and theories required for the study of cinema and media at graduate level.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of two core modules (30 credits and one non-credit bearing), three optional modules (90 credits), and a dissertation (60 credits).
Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MA in Film Studies.
Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.
Please click here for the current list of compulsory and optional modules for this programme.
All MA students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 12,000 words.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, and film and video screenings. The core modules are assessed by essays and examinations, which together count for 20% of the final mark. Optional modules are assessed by essays (40%), and the dissertation makes up the final 40%.
For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.
All prospective students can apply for the UCL Graduate School Open Scholarships.
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
Graduates from the MA in Film Studies have pursued various careers, including: academic research and teaching; careers within media arts (writing, directing, editing); print and media journalism; arts and museum management; multimedia authoring and digital design; film preservation and curating.
Former students of this programme have gone on to careers in education and publishing and a wide variety of careers in the media arts, including film production, festival programming, and film curation with organisations including the BBC, the Barbican Centre, the Athens International Film Festival, and the London Film School.
Why study this degree at UCL?
Each year, we welcome students from all over the world to our Film Studies MA. Under the aegis of UCL's Centre for Multidisciplinary & Intercultural Inquiry (CMII), students spend a year amongst a thriving, cross-disciplinary community of cinema scholars and research students.
We have particular research strengths in film history, film theory, and in an exceptionally broad range of national and regional cinemas.
UCL has made a major commitment to refurbishing its multimedia infrastructure for the study of film and related media. This includes building a significant collection of print and visual materials and new facilities for teaching and for film and media screenings.
What our students and staff say
"UCL is a research-intensive university, one of the best in the world. Students and faculty are from many different countries, and take seriously our history of being a progressive and radical institution that seeks to make the world a better place. It has world-class academics and research infrastructure; and is literally minutes away from some of the best libraries and cultural resources."
Professor Lee Grieveson
Professor of Media History
"I am interested in the novel, narrative technique, literary theory and theories of gender. I have worked on the interaction of fact and fiction in the novel, on the relationship of female and national identity, and on the representation and ethics of shame. I’m currently working on an interdisciplinary project with German historians looking at the reverberations of the Second World War in Europe. I have benefited particularly from being in a department (German) that is in itself interdisciplinary, as well as from the growing interactions between colleagues within and across the faculties. These interactions are becoming more possible, not least through the establishment of the Centre for Multidisciplinary and Intercultural Inquiry (CMII), of which I am currently Chair, but, crucially, the impact of the Faculty Institute of Graduate Studies (FIGS), now extended to two faculties, Arts & Humanities and Social & Historical Sciences. "
Professor Stephanie BirdGerman MPhil/PhD, Comparative Literature MPhil/PhD, Film Studies MPhil/PhD, Language, Culture and History MA, Comparative Literature MA, Film Studies MA
Professor of German
Application and next steps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
This programme requires two references. Further information regarding references can be found in our How to apply section.
There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.
Who can apply?
The programme is suitable for students with a first degree in film, media, or cultural studies or other relevant discipline in the humanities or the social sciences who wish to develop an advanced understanding of the place of cinema in the world, either as a suitable foundation for further research or as a professional qualification in its own right.
- All applicants
- 31 May 2021
Candidates are advised to apply much earlier than the general UCL deadline.
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Film Studies at graduate level
- why you want to study Film Studies at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to this programme
- how your personal, academic and professional background meets the demands of a challenging academic environment
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.
UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.