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An Introduction to Film Studies

An Introduction to Film Studies

This online course is ideal preparation for students embarking on studies of film, media, communications, or related subjects.

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Course Summary

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Film and cinema are ubiquitous elements of modern life. Yet the technologically advanced movies that we enjoy today have taken years to evolve, going back even to hand-shadow plays performed centuries ago, and it is only through understanding the roots of modern cinema and man’s desire for moving pictures that we can appreciate the beauty of film today.

This course is designed to guide students through the evolution of film and cinema from its ancient origins in hand shadows all the way through to modern-day blockbusters. It also introduces students to the special phrases and terms used by those within the film industry and teaches methods for critically analysing a piece of cinema, with a view to enabling students to write their own film review by the end of the course.

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Course Details

During the course, students will…

By the end of the course, students will be able to…

Syllabus

Tutorial 1: The Beginnings of Film (1 - 1.5 hours)

This tutorial takes you through the first part of the history of film, looking at film’s development from moving images and hand shadows right through to the French New Wave movement of the 1960s. Along this historical journey, you will also encounter the origins of cinema with the invention of the movie camera and the arrival of the classic Golden Hollywood era.


Tutorial 2: 1970s to the Present Day (1 - 1.5 hours)

This tutorial picks up where the previous tutorial left off. It begins in the post-classic Hollywood era with the rise of American independent film-making before moving on to discuss the impact of the blockbuster and the availability of videotapes and DVDs. The tutorial ends with a consideration of more recent technological advances in HD and 3D effects.


Tutorial 3: World and Transnational Cinema (1 - 1.5 hours)

This tutorial explores two different, but related, forms of cinema. World Cinema explores how films differ from country to country, whereas Transnational Cinema investigates what factors enable these differences to cross national borders. However, the two concepts are often handed somewhat nebulous definitions, so this tutorial will attempt to provide you with a definitive understanding of what both World Cinema and Transnational Cinema entail.


Tutorial 4: Writing Film Reviews (1 - 1.5 hours)

This tutorial looks more closely at film criticism and journalism. It considers two very different styles of film review in an attempt to give students an understanding of what constitutes good cinematic critique. It ends by offering useful practical advice as to how to get film reviews published.


Key Details

Technical Requirements Courses work best on desktops/laptops with fast, broadband internet connection.
They may also be used on tablets/iPads, though there may be some loss of functionality.
Please note that Flash Player must be installed for courses to function.
Course Pre-requisites Advanced/fluent level of English
Enthusiasm for Film and Media
Course Level For students applying/thinking of applying to university to study Film or Media
Difficulty Easy
Prior Knowledge No prior knowledge is required to take this course, just enthusiasm for the subject!
Fees £29.99
Workload 4-6 hours (further independent study is encouraged)

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Single License

£29.99


What's included?

  • Access to interactive course content
  • Discussion boards, exams, resources
  • Personal learning profile
  • Course certificate
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3 Month Membership

£89.99


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  • Access to all 30+ courses for 3 months
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  • Personal learning profile
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6 Month Membership

£129.99


What's included?

  • Access to all 30+ courses for 6 months
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  • Discussion boards, exams, resources
  • Personal learning profile
  • Course certificate
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