What Will You Study

Your degree recognises cinema’s role as a major cultural form and investigates film through a variety of approaches. You’ll examine cinema’s aesthetic, social and political importance in the context of an increasingly visual and media-orientated culture, while also investigating the intersections between contemporary art, theatre, dance, music, sound and film.

Film at Lancaster is a stimulating and intellectually engaging course which provides a framework for the close analysis of individual films. You will study cinema history and the social significance of films and will develop a detailed understanding of the techniques of film production. While  Film Studies is primarily an academic programme, students have the opportunity to make their own digital film in all three years of the course. We have excellent technical resources, including state-of-the-art digital editing equipment housed in Lancaster University’s Television Unit. You can choose from a range of specialist courses and will develop skills that can lead to postgraduate study and careers in the media, advertising and marketing.



You begin your degree with the module Introduction to Film Studies, which introduces you to a range of key critical approaches with an explicit focus on the meaning-making structures and techniques of film. You will expand your knowledge and understanding of a wide range of filmmaking traditions and be introduced to fundamental terms and concepts such as mise-en-scène, editing, narrative, acting, stardom, film sound and genre.

In addition, you’ll explore the key areas of cinema history, encompassing silent films, classical Hollywood cinema, French, German, Italian and Chinese cinema. In the third term, you will work in a small group to produce a short digital video. You will also take a LICA-wide module on modernism in the arts, and a third module from another LICA discipline or from a range of subjects offered across the University.

In your second year, you’ll take the core modules Global Cinema and Critical Reflections (Contemporary Arts Theory). You can also choose from a range of optional modules including Silent Cinema, Film Modernism and the Avant-garde, Politics and Ideology in the Cinema, Film and Comic Books, The Hollywood Musical, and Documentary Cultures, which uniquely combines the academic study of documentary cinema with the production of a short documentary video. 

In your final year you will work with a supervisor on the Film Dissertation, which may incorporate a practical element such as film. You will also choose several optional modules from a selection including Film Theory, Contemporary Hong Kong Cinema, The Cultural History of American Film and New Hollywood Cinema. In addition to these modules two vocationally orientated modules, LICA Work Placement and Creative Enterprise, are available in your second and final years.