BA/BA (Hons) Film and Media

This eclectic and inspiring course will give you the expertise to succeed in a variety of careers. You will learn practical filmmaking skills and have your critical thinking faculties sharpened to a fine point.

Why QMU?

  • Learn from staff with international film-making experience. Staff member Walid Salhab’s Kelpies film, for example, premièred in New York as part of Scotland Week.
  • Our BA/BA (Hons) Film and Media offers a unique opportunity to study the forces that shape the media, alongside giving you the practical skills to make a difference.
  • See your work on the big screen: a selection of students’ films are screened annually at an end-of-year show at an Edinburgh cinema.
  • You’ll learn in our specialist on-campus facilities including digital editing suites 
  • Students have access to the University's Business Innovation Zone and many of our students have gone on to create their own production companies.

On this course you will: 

  • Study film as an artistic and commercial enterprise, as well as various media institutions and the debates surrounding them. You will engage in deep critical thinking about culture, media and society as a whole. 
  • Develop real-world technical skills in film and media production, teamwork, academic research, project management and a variety of forms of communication.

The film and media that we create and consume reflects our individual identities, our local and national cultures and the political players on the global stage. Our film and media degree will help you examine these topics using rigorous academic discipline and practical filmmaking techniques. Graduates are well equipped for careers in the creative industries and beyond.

You can opt to study for an honours degree over four years or an ordinary degree over three years. You will complete a range of modules each year as outlined.

Year One

You will:

  • Be introduced to key concepts in film and media studies, including the emergence of cinema and the establishment of national broadcasting systems, and concepts such as narrative, popular culture and citizenship.
  • Learn the basic principles of filmmaking, in terms of editing, framing, composition, lighting and story.
  • Participate in our annual student film competition, the Silver Swans, where we screen a selection of the best student films and award prizes.


  • Studying Cinema
  • Media Analysis
  • Studying Media and Communications
  • Media and Communications Industries
  • Media Production: Skills and Techniques
  • Media Production: Video Project

Year Two

You will:

  • Develop your knowledge and understanding of film and media studies, thinking more critically about the film and media we produce and consume.
  • Strengthen your film and media production skills and develop more complex stories on film and in media.
  • Apply your skills to real-world situations with our ‘Client Project’ module, where you will pitch and complete a media project for a business or charity.


  • Film Genre Popular Media Cultures
  • Disruption in the Media and Cultural Industries
  • Media Production: Storytelling
  • Media Production: Online Journalism
  • Media Client Project

Year Three

You will:

  • Learn important research skills to prepare you for Year Four and life beyond University.
  • Develop a plan for your post-University creative career and understand working in the creative industries.
  • Choose specialist film and media options in, for example, animation, the video essay, screenwriting, filmmaking and photography.
  • Have the opportunity (subject to availability) to study for one semester at a university overseas. For more information, visit Exchanges and Study Abroad.


  • Creative Entrepreneurship
  • Global Film Cultures
  • Media, Politics and Culture
  • Developing a Research Project
  • plus two options

Year Four

You will:

  • Choose further specialist film and media options in, for example, animation, the video essay, screenwriting, filmmaking and photography. 
  • Complete a written or creative practice dissertation. Creative practice dissertations can be in film, photography, screenwriting or a video essay. You can choose a group filmmaking dissertation that adds another dimension if you want to specialise in a particular production role such as director, writer or editor.


  • Dissertation
  • Modernity on Screen
  • plus three options

Year Three and Four options

Options may include:

  • Communicating in Organisational Settings
  • Communication, Arts and Activism
  • Experiential Learning Placement
  • Film and the Family
  • Film Festivals
  • Photography and Visual Culture
  • Photography Practice
  • Playwriting
  • Playwriting 2
  • Political Communication
  • Popular Music
  • Radio and Audio Media
  • Reputation Issues and Crisis Management
  • Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror
  • Scotland on Screen
  • Screenwriting
  • International PR
  • Student Initiated Module
  • The American West in Popular Culture
  • The Only Way is Ethics
  • The Video Essay
  • Video Production
  • World Animation

Teaching, learning and assessment

You will be taught in lectures, seminars and in practical workshops. We have superb on-campus resources, and media production equipment, including a recently-upgraded film editing suite and dedicated production and photography area equipped with a green screen and on-site lighting equipment. You will be assessed in a wide array of ways across the course, including presentations, reflective diaries, blogs, videos, essays and some written exams.

Exchange opportunities

Yes. The 'Year Three' tab has more information.


You will graduate as a critical maker and consumer of media. You will be technically competent in the field, with rounded practical skills and ready to succeed in the career of your choice.

Our graduates are making names for themselves in film and television production, media research, PhD and academic research, public relations, marketing, advertising, arts and cultural management. Employers including the Edinburgh International Film Festival, Edinburgh Filmhouse, Channel 4 and the Leith Agency have snapped up their skills and attitude.

Entry requirements

Scottish Higher: Standard - BBBB, Minimum - BBCC

A Level: BCC

Irish Leaving Certificate: H2 H2 H3 H3

International Baccalaureate: 28 points

International: IELTS of 6.0 with no element lower than 5.5

Required subjects: English, Media Studies, or Film Studies preferred at Higher/A level or equivalent. English required and Maths preferred at Nat 5/GCSE.

Am I a Widening Access student?: We apply the minimum entry criteria to applicants who meet one or more contextual factor. To see if this would apply to you, please refer to the access and application page.

Mature/Access: Related Access course. Visit our College Leavers and Mature Students Advice page for more information. We welcome applications from mature students with relevant qualifications and/or experience.

Direct Entry:

Year Two

HNC in a related subject with B in the graded unit
Scottish Higher: BC at Advanced Higher in relevant subjects plus BB at Higher
A Level: BBB in relevant subjects

Year Three

HND in a related subject with CB in the graded units

For details of related HNC and HND courses, visit our College Leavers and Mature Students Advice page

Teaching staff, class sizes and timetables

For more information, please visit ‘How we teach and how you’ll learn’.

Specialist facilities film

Open Day presentation

Please note:

  • The modules listed here are correct at time of posting (Feb 2022) but may differ slightly to those offered in 2023. Please check back here for any updates.
  • The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our 2023/24 Entry Terms and Conditions (Undergraduate).
  • Teaching staff may be subject to change.

Course Overview

3 or 4 years full-time
Start Date
September 2023
On campus
Study Abroad
School of Arts, Social Sciences and Management
Fees & Funding
SCQF Level

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Student Story

Calum Duff If you’re interested in this course, I’d say go for it! It has really helped me shape a better understanding of film making and build my knowledge of real world applications.

Find out more about Calum's story