Free Online Film Studies Courses

Film studies majors most often seek and find employment in the art-design-culture employment sector, as well as within the film industry itself. Today the term film studies is itself a bit of a misnomer since the scope of studies extends well beyond what is traditionally considered film. In fact, the vast majority of film studies majors will end up doing something other than directing major motions pictures. Instead they will end up as professional technicians, editors, or marketers, to name a few possibilities. Outlets for and uses of the generic catch all term film also includes newer media tools, like smartphones and tablets. However, the principles and methods of filmmaking still revolve around the core of telling a visual story people are interested in.

Sample Courses

Film studies courses are generally writing intensive in nature, as the ability to clearly express ideas to coworkers and the public is interwoven into film. So, as you might expect, the humanities play a significant role in many film studies programs. Another component of this degree will include hands on labor, regardless of what the student ultimately plans to do with their degree after graduation.

Possible Specializations

Film or specifically moving image film is now well into its second century of use, which presents a curatorial side to film: working as an archivist, historian and preservation. Other specializations range from production to distribution and writing and criticism to sales and marketing with countless variants in between. The roles film plays in buying, selling, educating and entertaining people are as diverse as the career choices within the ever growing field.

Associate

Associate’s degrees in film studies afford students the opportunity to explore this field often as an adjunct to a technical or skilled labor certificate program. Many film and video production trade and craft professionals will elect to earn an associate’s degree in order to enhance their understanding of their specific roles in the larger context of filmmaking.

Bachelors

Unlike many other majors where there are specific employment positions with a title that closely mimics the degree, you will find few that advertise for film studies majors. However, there are a great many jobs suited for individuals with this degree: archivists, restorers, salespeople and marketers. Bachelor degree holders in this field sometimes take advantage of professional apprenticeships and post graduate certification programs to supplement the degree.

Master’s

Master’s programs in film studies are less common than bachelor’s programs due in large part to the desire for greater specialization. Students pursuing this master’s level of study may also be interested in careers as curators of film collections, which are often associated with libraries, museums and film societies dedicated to specific periods or genres.

Ph.D.

A limited number of schools offer this highly specialized doctoral program from which most graduates pursue a career in academia as educators or curators of film collections. Most people who will pursue this degree will go into the program with a strong sense of their research goals and overall doctoral project.

Ideal Candidates for Film Studies

Film studies candidates often lie at polar opposites from each other due to the nature of film and the potential professional uses of this particular degree. Ideal candidates interested in art may reside on the opposite end of the spectrum from those interested in the business end of film, such as marketing and distribution. While film studies candidates may be contradictions of sorts, they often share a common core: a love of film and an appreciation for the many ways the medium connects with people.

Career Pathways

Unlike other programs, film studies does not lead to a single destination career but rather an expansive field of options. The many paths include writing, editing, directing and more. Another career track is business centric and includes production, distribution and finance. Yet another path leads to preservation and another to teaching a new generation.

The outlook for film and video editors over the next ten years is one of slower than average growth, with incomes slightly below the average at $46,280 per year. The outlook for producers and directors also indicates slower than average growth, but a significantly higher average income at $71,350. The outlook for archivists and curators reflects average growth and slightly lower than average wages.

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Get More Out of Your Online Film Studies Courses

The youngest daughter of the director and writer Orson Welles is giving film buffs a chance to buy some of his personal possessions, including a camera, scripts and photos from the set of Citizen Kane.

Beatrice Welles discovered the relics last year in boxes and trunks and decided to put them up for auction. She said her father would have preferred making the memorabilia available to film buffs and fans, as opposed to sending them to a museum.

The Guardian, The Guardian
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Film Studies in the News

Source: Holywood Reporter

Our Favorite Film Studies Blogs

Film Studies Journals & Trade Magazines

  • Journals

    • Animation Journal

      Since its inception in 1991 as the first of it's kind, each issue of this peer-reviewed journal on animation has focused on the history and theory behind great animation.

    • Film Philosophy Journal

      A peer reviewed journal since 1996, the focus of this international academic journal, published three times a year, has been on the philosophical review of film studies, aesthetics and international ...

    • Film Quarterly

      A long running peer reviewed journal published continuously since 1958, providing thoughtful analysis of films in the Hollywood model, independent work and avant-garde cinema.

    • Historical Journal of Film, Radio & Television

      Published by the International Association for Media and History, this is a fully peer reviewed journal, which endeavors to explore the historical impact of audio-visual media on politics and ...

    • Journal of Religion and Film

      A peer reviewed journal, exploring a nexus of film and religion through the analysis of how religion is portrayed in film and how religious concepts are incorporated in the interpretation of film.

    • Wide Screen Journal

      An open access journal committed to the study of movies, television and new media through a combination of academic essays, reviews, interviews and scholarly commentary.

  • Trade Magazines

    • New Empress Magazine

      A fiercely independent island in an industry steeped in mutual back-scratching, this magazine endeavors to provide thoroughly independent reviews and ...

    • Sight & Sound Magazine

      This UK publication is produced by the British Film Institute, a non-profit primarily focused on film reviews with an emphasis on smaller independent and art ...

    • Total Film

      This is a monthly magazine, featuring interviews with actors, directors, news and reviews about film and the film industry.

    • Universal Film Magazine

      A unique entry in the world of film and movie publications, this magazine is focused entirely on providing coverage of film festivals and the community of ...

Film Studies Grants & Scholarships

  • Grants

    • Academy Nicholl Fellwoships

      Deadline: April 10th

      Award Amount: $35,000

      Awarded by the Oscars Foundation, up to five of these awards are made annually for the purpose of encouraging new screenwriters.

    • Bridging Cultures Through Film

      Deadline: June 11th

      Award Amount: Based on budget

      Provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the purpose of this grant is to support documentary filmmaking on topics that examine international and transitional themes in the humanities.

    • From The Heart Productions

      Deadline: April 30th

      Award Amount: Up to $500,000

      The Roy W. Grant supplies funding for shorts, independent films and documentaries that are unique with compelling storylines that tackle lesser known topics and historical subjects.

    • Resist

      Deadline: Various

      Award Amount: $4,000

      Founded in 1967 in opposition to the Vietnam war, Resist continues today promoting social justice and a more equal distribution of power and money provides funding for films that focus on change.

  • Scholarships

    • Francis D. Lyon Scholarship for Film Students

      Deadline: March 15th

      Award Amount: $2,500

      This scholarship is funded by a gift from Brother "Pete" Lyon and is administered by the Phi Delta Theta Fraternity and is available to fraternity members who ...

    • John Dales Scholarship Competition

      Deadline: March 15th

      Award Amount: Determined Annually

      This scholarship is expressly for the benefit of children and SAG-AFTRA members who will be attending fully accredited schools and majoring in some aspect of ...

    • Ronald G. Perrier Endowed Scholarship

      Deadline: Varies

      Award Amount: $500

      St. Cloud University awards this scholarship to declared film studies minors or majors who have complete at least 12 credits in film and have a GPA of 3.0 or ...

    • The Eleanor Perry Writing Award

      Deadline: N/A

      Award Amount: $3,000

      This award is available to either graduate or undergraduate women at UCLA for an original screenplay that depicts women in either current or historical ...

    • The Frank Capra, Jr, Film Studies Scholarship

      Deadline: October 1st

      Award Amount: $1,000

      This merit based scholarship is awarded by the University of North Carolina, Wilmington to individuals who are at least juniors having completed 59 credits or ...

    • The Meredith Mac Rae Memorial Scholarship

      Deadline: Varies

      Award Amount: $3,000

      Administered by Chapman University, this award is presented to the female graduate student in the MFA program whose essay is selected by the committee after ...

Film Studies Internships

  • American Film Institute Video and Technical Internship

    Deadline: Varies

    During this internship the successful candidate will be assisting the technical director with logging and editing video during the festival as well as providing general administrative support.

  • Chicago Filmmakers

    Deadline: Varies

    The Filmmaker Intern Services program intern will be assisting members and students in a variety of ways including; equipment management, organization, research and more.

  • Cinema Chicago

    Deadline: Varies

    This unpaid three month internship is for students who wish to obtain hands-on experiences through work – unpaid positions may lead to paid seasonal positions during the fall season.

  • Disney Animation Studios – Talent Development Program

    Deadline: Varies

    This internship is open to graduating students within three years of graduation for a period of 3-6 months in a paid position that affords participants the ability to test the depth of their skills.

  • Documentary Film Program

    Deadline: March 21st

    The Sundance Institute is offering this paid internship ($8/hr) in Los Angeles. Candidates are expected to work 20 hours per week providing support to the program's artist support program.

  • Green Planet Productions

    Deadline: Varies

    Award winning documentary filmmaker Green Planet is offering three month internship programs for which participants will receive course credit upon satisfactory completion.

  • Lucas Film

    Deadline: Varies

    This pioneering film and production company opens internships throughout the year and is currently seeking candidates for their Jedi Master Program which is a paid internship in Singapore.

  • Paramount Pictures

    Deadline: Varies

    This motion picture studio offers paid internships to current graduate students who are working toward a degree MFA and undergrads who are entering their junior or senior year.

  • PBS – POV

    Deadline: Varies

    This longest running documentary series on PBS is currently seeking several interns for various responsibilities for the winter/spring and summer production cycles.

  • Pittsburgh Filmmakers Equipment Office

    Deadline: Varies

    Production services interns will be asked to work in all aspects of the production team both on and off sets for a total of 126 unpaid hours with stipends available intermittently for work as a grip.

Film Studies Student & Professional Organizations

  • Student Organizations

    • International Student Film Organization

      The organization has 3 primary goals: to serve as a means of connection among students and the industry; to improve visibility of student film; and to ...

  • Professional Organizations

    • American Film Institute

      The institute has two primary functions at opposite ends of the spectrum – to preserve the rich film heritage, including cataloging and archiving film, and to educate the next generation of ...

    • Association of Independent Video and Filmmakers

      Since its inception in 1978, AIVF has been a fount of information and advocacy for independent, grassroots and activist media-makers. AIVF became a non-profit in 2007 and continues its advocacy.

    • Directors Guild of America

      Started in 1936 by top directors who came together to protect their own creative and economic rights, it has since grown to become the premier representative of directors and their teams.

    • Motion Pictures Editors Guild

      The guild represents more than 7,300 independent freelance and staff post production professionals and has done so for more than 100 years as Local 700 of the IATSE.

    • Producers Guild of America

      The guild is a non-profit association representing 6,000 members. Their goal is to ensure members producing in television, film and new media work together to assist one another.

    • SAG-AFTRA

      Formerly two separate organizations, the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Actors, they have since merged to form a single group representing performers.

    • Society for Cinema & Media Studies

      This is a scholarly organization committed to fostering an appreciation of film, television and their related media through scholarly criticism.