Duration & study mode
1 year full-time, typically 2 years part-time
Business & Creative Industries
Course starting dates
Film City (Glasgow) & Ayr: September
Our MA Filmmaking course will provide a stimulating, supportive and professional environment in which you can freely yet rigorously develop your unique individual voice and equip you with the skills to transform dreams into cinematic realities.
The programme is designed to support those who wish to work professionally in the film industry either in fiction, documentary or experimental filmmaking, including immersive virtual reality productions.
You will make three films over the course of the year (a documentary, a fiction film, and then a graduation film in any genre). You will combine theory and production in these film practice modules, while also extending your knowledge and understanding of the context of filmmaking in two other classroom-based modules.
Teaching on this master's is undertaken by active and award-winning film practitioners. You will also have the opportunity to attend specialist industry events at the Glasgow Film Festival. Opportunities will also exist to learn from the professionals who work in Film City and, on occasion, for you to make use of the Film City facilities to complete post-production on your own films.
Our MA Filmmaking course allows you exclusive access to strands within the context of film festivals. It provides you with privileged access to industry visitors, and takes advantage of their presence in the country to run special industry events with our partners.
There will also be opportunities for you to learn from the professionals who work in Film City, and to make use of their facilities (facilities which no UK university can rival).
Placement opportunities are also likely to emerge through the Scottish Film Talent Network.
Recent industry guest tutors have included David Mackenzie (Director - Outlaw King, Hell or High Water), Peter Mackie Burns (Director - Daphne, Rialto) and Iain Smith OBE (Producer - Mad Max Fury Road, Children of Men).
With its academic base on the Ayr Campus, our course is also delivered from Film City Glasgow, the bespoke industry hub for twenty independent production companies and post-production facility houses. Film City Glasgow also boasts Scotland’s only Dolby sound mixing studio.
We welcome Scottish, UK and international students and consider all applicants on an individual basis.
Don’t worry if your qualifications are not listed here, we take a range of factors into account when assessing your application and are happy to consider other alternative combinations of qualifications and experience
If you are applying with an EU or non-EU qualification, please check our Postgraduate Entry Requirements page which gives more information about country-specific entry requirements.
Honours degree (minimum lower second) or equivalent. You will be required to submit a portfolio of relevant creative work (previous films or creative projects), a written statement (500-750 words), and attend an interview with the Course Leader either in person or via video conference.
Our course may in certain circumstances permit entry where specific professional or other experience is demonstrated and is deemed appropriate to the level.
For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level. The qualifications below must have been gained within two years of the start of your course.
General English language requirements at UWS: International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)
All stated English tests are acceptable for admission for both home/EU and international students for this programme:
For our research degrees (MRes, MPhil, PhD, DBA, DProf), applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:
For Health, Nursing & Midwifery courses that lead to professional registration with the Nursing & Midwifery Council, applicants are required to have an IELTS or Occupational English Test (OET)*.
For such courses, the IELTS score is as follows:
* Note that the Occupational English Test (OET) will now be accepted in addition to IELTS as proof of a Nurse's English Language Competence (Nursing & Midwifery Council, 2019).
For our Certificate of Higher Education courses, applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:
TOEFL IBT*: 78; no sub-test less than:
* Please note that TOEFL is still acceptable for admission to this programme for both home/EU and international students.
For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use TOEFL to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level courses. We therefore still accept TOEFL tests taken in the last two years for admission to this programme.
West African Senior School Certificate of Education (WASSCE) including acceptance of WAEC Scratchcard*
*UWS will accept a WAEC scratchcard confirming that an applicant has achieved C6 or above as evidence of meeting English language requirement from Nigeria if the student graduated within the last 5 years. After 5 years applicants would be required to provide the WAEC Certificate.
Applicants who do not meet the minimum English language requirements have the option to study one of our preparatory and pre-sessional English courses. The UWS courses available are:
By completing the full MA Filmmaking, you will make three short films – a documentary, a fiction film, and then a graduation film in any genre. You will combine filmmaking theory and production while also extending your knowledge and understanding of the context of filmmaking in other modules.
In addition, a recognised innovative feature of our course is each year we have guest filmmaker who works intensively with the students and a professional crew over the period of a week teaching them how to direct and work with actors.
For the Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) stage, you will study the following core modules:
Successful completion of the PgDip allows you to proceed to the master's module:
Masters Film Project (core, 60 credits) – students joining for Academic Year 2021/22 will receive £500 towards the cost of producing a final Masters project film.
Your study and assessment will involve the topics below:
You will make a documentary film under the direction of the core course team, exploring the boundaries of documentary film practice, and its intersection with:
You will gain a professional insight into the contemporary film industry. You will study every aspect of the planning and logistics of complex low-budget film shoots, from concept to new distribution models and marketing, placing these key activities within their economic and artistic context.
You will make a short fiction film under the direction of an invited filmmaker, who will launch the module with an intensive one-week workshop, and remain available over the rest of the trimester to follow your progress and mentor your project.
You will undertake an industry-standard development process, in which you prepare your final Masters film project under the supervision of leading professionals active in the practice of the short film form.
You will undertake a major creative project – either fiction or documentary or immersive film – under the guidance of the course team.
Find out more about the structure, learning outcomes, compulsory and optional modules in this course.
The MA Filmmaking benefits from strong connections with the Scottish film industry, including access to services at Film City Glasgow and skills development support for students from film executives from the BFI & Creative Scotland-funded Scottish Film and Talent Network (SFTN). On graduating you will be in a privileged position to access industry funding for their future film projects, and develop viable professional careers.
Recent Filmmaking graduates have worked at the Cannes Film Festival, the Scottish Documentary Institute, the Amsterdam International Film Festival (IDFA) as well as picking up awards for their films at festivals internationally.
Our MA Filmmaking degree will support your development of working professionally in the independent and world cinema sectors of the film industry either in:
£6,500 cost per year of study
£6,500 Cost per year of study
£6,500 Cost per year of study
£16,000 Per year of study
£1,215 per module (20 credits)
£1,215 per module (20 credits)
£1,215 per module (20 credits)
£7,000 Cost of study
£10,765 Cost of study
£10,765 Cost of study
£16,400 Cost of study
£1,000 Cost per 20-credit module of study
The cost of attending university is an investment in your future career.
In addition to tuition fees and living expenses, some courses involve extra costs like study materials, field trips, equipment and uniforms.
Fortunately, there is a great deal of financial support available to help students meet the cost of their study. This ranges from:
The sections below provide details of additional costs that your course may involve along with any financial support that may be available.
You can also find additional information in our Postgraduate Money, Fees & Funding section.
Students on certain degrees will incur some additional costs not covered by their tuition fees. These could be for things like specialist equipment, study materials, work placements, graduation, membership of relevant organisations or costs related to carrying out fieldwork.
For students on course with an element of fieldwork, there may also be extra costs for travel and accommodation.
Please contact the course leader for details of the additional costs associated with this course.
Tuition fees are calculated based on where you are from and what you are studying. Some courses also involve additional costs, such as mandatory field trips, equipment or studying abroad.
Scottish students studying at postgraduate level at UWS are entitled to various funds and support towards tuition fees and living costs.
English, Welsh and Northern Irish students studying at postgraduate level at UWS are entitled to various funds and support towards tuition fees and living costs.
EU students studying at postgraduate level of UWS may be eligible for SAAS funding, as well as support to meet the costs of childcare and various sources of additional funding.
There are several scholarship and incentive schemes available to international students studying at postgraduate level at UWS, as well as support to meet the costs of childcare and various sources of additional funding.
UWS administer a range of discretionary and childcare funds. These are designed to support students who are experiencing financial difficulty or struggling to meet the costs of childcare.
Becoming a student can have an impact on your entitlement to certain benefits. It may mean you are no longer eligible to claim a benefit you have been receiving, or your new income from student funding may affect the amount you are able to receive.
If there isn’t a statutory source of funding for you or your course, or you are in need of additional financial support, you may wish to consider more alternative sources of funding such as trust funds and scholarships.
Choosing to become a student can have a big impact on your budget and you may need to reassess your spending to account for a reduced income. We’ve put together some guidance to help you manage your money and make the right financial choices for you and your family.
All students should apply directly to the University through our online application system. Before you apply, you should check that you meet our entry requirements and you should have all your supporting documents ready.
The first stage of the process is to create a profile; you don't have to complete the application in one session - you can complete it in stages by saving each section and return to complete it at a later date.
You will need to upload documents with your applications, which may include transcripts and degree certificates.
Most courses don't have a formal closing date, but they will close when they are full; apply early to avoid disappointment. There may also be funding deadlines that apply to you.
Before you begin your application, it is important to read the Postgraduate & Post-Experience application step-by-step guide for a smooth process.
An ATAS certificate is not required for overseas students applying for this course.
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