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  1. #1
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    Hello all - first off, I apologise in advance if this is the wrong section to ask this question, I wasn't quite sure where this topic 'fit'!



    I want to take Film Studies A Level as a distance learning course - but a hard as I've tried I just can't find anywhere that does this course.



    Does anyone know where I could study A/AS Level Film Studies as a correspondence or online course?



    Thanks in advance.



    B

  2. #2
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    What a good question. I'd be interested to know myself.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Country: UK CaptainWaggett's Avatar
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    Have you checked Hotcourses? Searching for Online Learning and "film studies" gives some results.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the 'headsup; about Hotcourses...



    I've been through their database and - typically - the one institution that did offer A Level Film Studies as a distance learning course now doesn't!



    I'm really surprised that a topic as popular as Film Studies isn't more widely available as a distance learning A Level course. Sadly, there aren't any FE establishments in my locale that offer the course as an evening course either.



    So, what I have decided to do is to follow Tanya Jones's 'A-level Film Studies' textbook - doing the exercises and essays. Then once I have done this, Exeter University has a set of non-accredited Film Studies courses:-







    These would seem to be the best compromise, although I suspect they are of a little higher level than 'A' Level.



    My goal is to eventually do Exeter's MA in Film Studies.



    Hope the information above is of some help ------



    IF ANYONE IS PERHAPS INTERESTED IN WORKING THROUGH THE A LEVEL FILM STUDIES TEXTBOOK AS A COLLABORATIVE OR GROUP PROJECT PLEASE LET ME KNOW!



    Thanks.... B

  5. #5
    Senior Member Country: Scotland julian_craster's Avatar
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    <<My goal is to eventually do Exeter's MA in Film Studies>>



    I assume you find 'Film Theory' endlessly fascinating, rather than just enjoying films....if not, don't bother....





    You would need a full BA (Hons) with 2i minimum to do this



    I doubt if a FE college level or an A level) course would be acceptable for MA , unless standards have dropped so much in the last 10 years (which may be so.... ! )



    I would enquire from Exeter Uni now about what is acceptable to them for a MA student.

  6. #6
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    name='julian_craster']<<My goal is to eventually do Exeter's MA in Film Studies>>



    I assume you find 'Film Theory' endlessly fascinating, rather than just enjoying films....if not, don't bother....





    You would need a full BA (Hons) with 2i minimum to do this



    I doubt if a FE college level or an A level) course would be acceptable for MA , unless standards have dropped so much in the last 10 years (which may be so.... ! )



    I would enquire from Exeter Uni now about what is acceptable to them for a MA student.


    Hi there Julian, thanks for making a very good point...



    Actually, I enjoy films on both levels - both as entertainment and learning about the meaning behind them. In fact, learning about Film (theory or history) often enhances my enjoyment of watching a movie...



    I already have a media degree (a First in Design for the Screen), but this is a slightly different discipline and was taken some time ago - so the A Level would be the ideal re-introduction to Film Studies for me.



    Exeter's non-accredited pathway would also be very good preparation - in my case - for applying for the MA pathway, but you are spot on and anyone without an undergraduate degree (of 2 or above) would be advised to look into a BA level Film Studies course...



    But in either case, A Level Film Studies seems a very good first step.



    ....I have started the first exercise in the textbook, and it's really fun! Not dry or academic at all!

  7. #7
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    name='julian_craster']<<My goal is to eventually do Exeter's MA in Film Studies>>



    I assume you find 'Film Theory' endlessly fascinating, rather than just enjoying films....if not, don't bother....





    You would need a full BA (Hons) with 2i minimum to do this



    I doubt if a FE college level or an A level) course would be acceptable for MA , unless standards have dropped so much in the last 10 years (which may be so.... ! )



    I would enquire from Exeter Uni now about what is acceptable to them for a MA student.


    I did an MSc without having completed a BSc - but that's me, I always did prefer "the road less travelled by"



    I did it by showing them that my years of experience were the equivalent to a BSc (or more)



    Steve

  8. #8
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    name='Steve Crook']I did an MSc without having completed a BSc - but that's me, I always did prefer "the road less travelled by"



    I did it by showing them that my years of experience were the equivalent to a BSc (or more)



    Steve


    Absolutely Steve,



    A lot of postgraduate courses are open to those who can show appropriate 'real world' experience - they will often mention this on the course admissions page.



    Which is quite handy! :)

  9. #9
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    I presume you're intending studying film in the hope that one day you'll have the qualification behind you to go on and make films? the trouble is, there are that many people doing media studies & film studies; I really wouldn't bother. The best thing to do is read, read and read some more while building up a professional portfolio of work in the form of shorts. Some of the greatest filmmakers never even went to film school.

  10. #10
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    name='Beaty1961']Hi there Julian, thanks for making a very good point...



    Actually, I enjoy films on both levels - both as entertainment and learning about the meaning behind them. In fact, learning about Film (theory or history) often enhances my enjoyment of watching a movie...



    I already have a media degree (a First in Design for the Screen), but this is a slightly different discipline and was taken some time ago - so the A Level would be the ideal re-introduction to Film Studies for me.


    If you're a mature or mature-ish student, as it sounds, with at least one degree; you may be accepted for an MA on the basis of your experience and aptitude and a personal interview. I was accepted at Westminster University for a media related MA despite having an unrelated teaching degree - but obviously it might vary. Worth checking though.



    I empathise with what you say about knowledge enhancing your film viewing experience. I've only recently started studying films analytically, as well as film culture and history, and I don't know why it's taken me so long! (Actually I do, it's because I've always been resolutely anti-academic.) Whatever the reason, it's opened my eyes to fresh avenues of exploration and shone a new light on old films I've enjoyed. Hope it works our for you.

  11. #11
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    name='nandywell']I presume you're intending studying film in the hope that one day you'll have the qualification behind you to go on and make films? the trouble is, there are that many people doing media studies & film studies; I really wouldn't bother. The best thing to do is read, read and read some more while building up a professional portfolio of work in the form of shorts. Some of the greatest filmmakers never even went to film school.


    Hi nandywell,



    No - I just enjoy learning about film.



    I wouldn't say my interest is a professional one, more a wish to look in greater depth into why films I like were made the way they were - and also to gain a greater understanding about those films I enjoy but don't quite understand fully, or don't understand at all...



    (I am a big David Lynch fan, so as you can imagine, there are quite a few of those! LOL)



    I know studying film to this degree might seem a little superfluous to some, and I don't feel I HAVE to to enjoy film. But it does give me a real buzz to find out something new about a movie I like.



    :)

  12. #12
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    name='sippog']I empathise with what you say about knowledge enhancing your film viewing experience. I've only recently started studying films analytically, as well as film culture and history, and I don't know why it's taken me so long! (Actually I do, it's because I've always been resolutely anti-academic.) Whatever the reason, it's opened my eyes to fresh avenues of exploration and shone a new light on old films I've enjoyed. Hope it works our for you.


    I think many of us are a little biased against academic forms of interests...



    I mean - I'll be honest - I HATED school! So the idea of taking a course as a 'leisure' choice is a bit strange.







    The way I look at Film Studies is rather simple (maybe over simplistic)...



    Studying Film is like making the step between an acquaintanceship and a friendship. I know a lot of people just from the pub who I would call acquaintances, and I don't know much about them and what they do out of the environment of the pub...



    But I have also made a few friendships from those I met in the pub, and now meet them outside the pub...



    This is like films - IMHO - you can enjoy films on the TV or in the cinema, and just leave it there. Or you can take it a bit further and read a bit about films or watch a documentary or two, or take a film studies course...



    That's when - to me - a film stops being an acquaintance and becomes a friend.



    (Er, I'm opening myself to all sorts of flaming here aren't I? LOL)





  13. #13
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    name='Beaty1961'] This is like films - IMHO - you can enjoy films on the TV or in the cinema, and just leave it there. Or you can take it a bit further and read a bit about films or watch a documentary or two, or take a film studies course...



    That's when - to me - a film stops being an acquaintance and becomes a friend.



    (Er, I'm opening myself to all sorts of flaming here aren't I? LOL)


    Don't see how anyone could possibly take offence at that.



    What I find dismaying about a lot of the students I teach (admittedly only at FE and evening class level) is that they claim to be interested in film but they have almost no curiosity about stepping outside their (often very limited) frames of reference.



    They also, bizarrely in this media saturated age, are visually illiterate; they don't have the intellectual capacity to analyse or criticise what they see. I know I'm not alone in feeling this way; I've heard lecturers on university media courses say that students arrive without the most basic analytical tools.



    This lack of intellectual curiosity is a common factor in other areas and leads me to think that recent generations are actually being impoverished by the massive over-availability of media. Nothing seems to impress or leave a mark any more.



    It's not a case of being elitist or intellectually snobbish. It's being aware of what's on offer. I try and encourage my students to remain open; to sample at least one example of every genre and expand their tastes. A few of them actually listen.

  14. #14
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    I want to take Film Studies A Level as a distance learning course - but a hard as I've tried I just can't find anywhere that does this course.



    Does anyone know where I could study A/AS Level Film Studies as a correspondence or online course?

  15. #15
    Senior Member Country: Scotland julian_craster's Avatar
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    Another point to remember is that in the UK, nearly all MA students in Humanities subjects (like Film, Literature) are self-financing, with no loans or grants to rely on....this is very different to Science and Computing....



    This means that in some cash-strapped UK university departments (away from those universities that have the luxury of being academically selective about their intake...) , the ability to write a cheque for the fees that doesn't bounce will usually secure you admission to an MA....





    Am I being overly-cynical? I think not... Just read the Times Higher Education Supplement every week, as I do !



    Incidentally, if you go for a practically oriented course in film-making/production design (unlike the Exeter Uni one which is all theory - no practical element) , you may be eligible for a 'Career Development Loan' as this course would be more employment focused...



    Good Luck...

  16. #16
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    name='julian_craster']Am I being overly-cynical? I think not... Just read the Times Higher Education Supplement every week, as I do !



    Good Luck...


    Hi j_c:



    I don't think you are being cynical...



    I have long thought that the arts and humanities have been neglected and run down by successive British governments - preferring to focus on industrial, commercial or scientific courses.



    Yet the 'Arts' bring in a huge amount of both prestige and profit to the nation, but the short-sightedness of the government will not allow them to invest in these areas as their imaginations do not let them understand what the 'product' is.



    ...I'll stop here before I rant my way completely off topic!



    Suffice to say that the drought of creative courses in secondary schools as a 'feasible and productive course of education' discriminates against a large number of children and effectively throws many of them onto the scrap heap...



    Its very sad.

  17. #17
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    It strikes me that some of the senior members of this forum would be well capable of constructing a course in British Film Studies. Maybe it wouldn't have a formal qualification, but it could provide a superb grounding in the subject. What about it, fellows?

  18. #18
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    name='kezzy']It strikes me that some of the senior members of this forum would be well capable of constructing a course in British Film Studies. Maybe it wouldn't have a formal qualification, but it could provide a superb grounding in the subject. What about it, fellows?


    Ah, that's the difference between learning something useful - and learning enough to pass exams



    It's like when you learn to drive. First you have to learn how to pass the driving test(s). Then, when you've done that, you learn how to drive



    Steve

  19. #19
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    Hope you will forgive what is probably a bit of self-promotion here, but to support my study of the A Level Film Studies curriculum I have built a modest web site...



    The reason for this is because I can't find a formal evening class or distance learning course for this qualification, so I have decided to 'self study' using the course work from the A Level text book. It seems to make sense to keep a record of both my answers to the exercises and a diary of my thoughts which are my alternative to the 'classroom discussion' element of the course...



    If this is of interest to anyone here, here's the link: Film Studies blog - Journaling my study of film, cinema and directors



    I know the formal, or structured, study of Film isn't for everyone - but whatever your view, we are all Film Students to one degree or another so there may be something interesting here - and most of all, I would appreciate any comments you might have to add, or corrections where you feel I have answered a task incorrectly.



    Cheers....



    Beaty

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