Screen Production - BA (Hons)

2025/26 Full-time Undergraduate course

Award:

Bachelor of Arts with Honours

Faculty:

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

School:

School of Communication and Media

Campus:

Belfast campus

UCAS code:

P594
The UCAS code for Ulster University is U20

Start date:

September 2025

Overview

Want to work in the film, television or creative industries? Then this is the highly practical, industry-facing degree choice for you.

Summary

The BA (Hons) in Screen Production is a highly practical, industry-facing, theory-informed degree, designed for those who want to work in the film, television or creative industries. You will study specialist skills modules in Cinematography, Editing, Screenwriting, Sound production, Fiction Film, Documentary, Live TV and Virtual Production.

Screen Production combines the craft skills needed for Fiction Film, Documentary, Live TV and Virtual Production with the kind of research, theoretical and critical skills that are essential for new entrants going into the creative industries. The BA (Hons) in Screen Production is taught in a brand new studio complex in Belfast's city centre.Students have access to an array of industry-standard equipment that will enable you to finish your work to festival or broadcast standard. You will be taught by academics and industry professionals with years of experience in screen production, giving you the skills and confidence you need to succeed in your future career. Many of the staff, including the technical staff, have a vast array of film and broadcast credits on award-winning content gained over the past 20 years.

Your creative work will be supported by learning about the ideas and histories that underscore the forms and genres that make up the world of contemporary film and television. The aim of this is to encourage you to be bold in your thinking and imaginative in your work.

Ulster University is one of the longest standing and most respected of providers of education in film, television and related media, supported by pioneering research and creative practice.

We’d love to hear from you!

We know that choosing to study at university is a big decision, and you may not always be able to find the information you need online.

Please contact Ulster University with any queries or questions you might have about:

  • Course specific information
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For any queries regarding getting help with your application, please select Admissions in the drop down below.

For queries related to course content, including modules and placements, please select Course specific information.

We look forward to hearing from you.

About this course

About

The BA (Hons) in Screen Production is delivered in a brand new studio complex in heart of Belfast's city centre. It is part of the Ulster Screen Academy, bringing together courses in film, television, interactive design and media, animation and gaming design. It is located in an exciting and dynamic part of the city known as the 'Cathedral Quarter'. Nearby are many of the biggest production companies in Northern Ireland and the campus is only a short distance from the famous 'Paint Hall' studios where Games of Thrones was filmed.

The BA (Hons) in Screen Production will introduce you to the widest possible experience of film and television production, combined with critical thinking to help you originate new content and unlock your creativity. We can help you develop the skills you will need to enter the industry with our innovative combination of production and theoretical modules.

The degree can be taken over three or four years. It will take four years if you decide to spend year three working in the industry on placement (earning a Diploma in Professional Practice)or if you chose to study abroad (earning a Diploma in International Academic Studies).

You will receive significant software training in non-linear editing using the Adobe Creative Suite for video, sound and VFX. We have a dedicated screening room with 5.1 surround sound and large Apple Mac labs offering full access to the Adobe Creative Suits software on campus. Our studio space is fully equipped with green screens, lighting desk and live broadcast facilities. We have a full range of 4k Blackmagic cinema cameras.Students can edit and colour grade their work in our dedicated editing suites. Uniquely, we also have a brand-new, state-of-the-art Virtual Production Studio.

Screens are part of our everyday life. We want you to be prepared to join a fast-growing, exciting and ever-changing industry that creates the content for all of the screens in our lives, big or small. Through practice-based learning, you will acquire the skills needed for digital film and television production combined with knowledge of how the industry works, and the writing skills to tell the stories you want to make.

The screen-based sector is one of the fastest growing sectors of the Northern Ireland economy. This programme has been developed with industry partners to ensure that it addresses current and future skills gaps in the sector helping to produce creative graduates who can help grow the local creative economy.

Year One – Much of your time in the first year will be spent learning the craft skills you need in order to create high-quality film and television outputs. You will study Cinematographyand Editing for Film & TV to develop camera and post-production skills for the screen. You will study Sound Production and Screenwritingto develop your storytelling and audio skillsfor Film and TV production. These are combined with two core modules in critical and theoretical aspects of screen production: Screen Theory and Screen Stories. In these modules you will be introduced to the core of TV production: compelling stories. You will also gain an understanding of how media affects the world around usand how culture and politics are embedded in the media we produce and consume.

Year Two – building on your technical and storytelling skills from year one, you will focus on our four core production areas: Fiction Film, Documentary, Live Television and Virtual Production. You will work in production groups with your fellow students to develop a wide range of creative outputs. You will experience a range of industry roles, therefore better understanding and focusing your career pathway. Alongside production modules, you will study Screen Identities where you will consider the cultural formation of the nation and the role of the film and television within it. You will explore traditions of representation and the power relations that give rise to them and the attempts to reimagine and rebrand cities, regions and nations in the context of globalisation and in an era of transnational media.

On completion of year two, you can opt to take a sandwich year, either undertaking a year-long placement in industry (earning a Diploma in Professional Practice) or studying in one of our partner institutions in America, Europe, or Asia (earning a Diploma in International Academic Studies).

Year Three/Four (after a year out) – In your final year of study, you will have the choice of working individually or in groups to develop an innovative Major Project in any of our four core production areas: Fiction Film, Documentary, Live TV or Virtual Production. Live TV projects must be group projects. This will allow you to graduate with a large portfolio of workin a range of industry roles helping to demonstrate your skills and knowledge in media production – making you as employable as possible.

Modules

Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.

Year One

Cinematography

This skills-based module combines the fundamental principles of cinematographyand camera craft in Film and TV with a critical approach to image-making for screen production. This module gives students the necessary core skills in camera and lighting operations for screen projects. Whilst students will study the role and function of the cinematographer in the professional production environment, the principal aim of this module is to provide the student with an understanding of industry-standard camera and lighting techniques and their close relationship with storytelling. It will consider how images construct and reinforce narrative meaning as well as support the overall aesthetic and visual language in Film and TV production. The organisational, managerial and decision-making skills of the professional cinematographerwill also be explored through practical assessments.

Editing for Film and Television

This module introduces students to the theory and practice of visual editing. Students will be introduced to key concepts related to visual editing practice such as meaning-making and narrative construction. These will be related to key movements in editing practice such as continuity editing, montage editing and postmodern editing. Students will develop their editing skills through hands-on editing workshops using Adobe Premiere CC and the production of an editing practice portfolio.

Screen Theory

This module explores critical ideas we can apply to screen culture – specifically Film and TV. The module will invite you to think about how screen culture is produced and consumed by applying a variety of media and cultural theories. You will be introduced to key intellectual figures whose thinking has helped us understand the social and cultural significance of screen images and stories. We do this because screens do not merely reflect society, nor should we think of them as innocent, transparent ‘windows on the world’. Rather, as this module will argue, there is a very intimate relationship between screen media and the world around us, to such an extent that screen culture plays a profound role in shaping that world and the social, human relationships within it. This means that people involved in screen production, in all its variety, should feel the weight of responsibility upon their shoulders every time they wield a camera.

Screen Stories

This module is about how we tell stories on screen. It begins by considering the style of the classical Hollywood period and it ends by considering the more demanding style of a deliberately political cinema. In between it raises questions about how genre and style shape the stories that we consume and produce, as well as issues surrounding authorship and spectatorship. The module will seek to impress upon you the cultural and political significance of the screen entertainment we make and consume. It will try to persuade you that the stories we enjoy on-screen resonate with us in profound ways that shape how we see and experience the world and therefore act in it. That’s why analysing these texts is so intriguing. It will make you more self-conscious with regards to what you watch, and hopefully influence your own screen productions.

Sound Production 1

This module introduces sound for Film and TV i.e. audio recording and production. Core concepts of sound for screen are addressed, including the association between sound and vision for storytelling. The module will cover a broad range of practice-based skills and the technical knowledge required for producing high quality sound in screen-based media. This will be balanced with creative design and the aesthetic considerations that make compelling and engaging soundtracks that support the narrative. The module will also introduce students to important historical developments in sound theory for screen media, the language of sound analysis and location parlance of production. The emphasis will be placed on good sound acquisition skills on location and audio editing in post-production. Students will use a range of equipmentand software to capture and manipulate sound, and in so doing begin to establish connections between story, image, sound design and emotion in film. This module will be delivered in the context of a lecture series and intensive practical workshops that considers these multifaceted aspects of sound production.

Screenwriting

Screenwriting is as essential to the development and production of on-screen drama as storytelling is to being human. This module introduces students to the process of screenwriting: its key skills and a range of aesthetic and technical considerations necessary in developing a script for screen. It presents this writing practice in context of an understanding of the history and theory of screenwriting and allows students to demonstrate their knowledge in this field by writing a short screenplay.

Year Two

Screen Identities

This module will introduce you to the role of film and television in the making of national and regional identities.Living and/or working in Belfast gives us an opportunity to offer some important and interesting insights into the making of national and regional identities, and the role of media representation and cultural expression in giving ‘us’ a sense of who ‘we’ are. The ideas that you will encounter in this module can be carried into and explored further through your own screen productions. In this module we will theorise identity and consider the cultural formation of the nation and the role of the film and television within it. We will consider traditions of representation and the power relations that give rise to them and the attempts to reimagine and rebrand cities, regions and nations in the context of globalisation and in an era of transnational media.

Documentary Film

This module introduces students to key concepts in relation to the history, theory and practice of the documentary genre. It will cover key movements in the genre such as cinéma vérité and direct cinema, alongside contemporary sub-genres such as Reality TV and the mock-documentary. The module encourages students to consider how the platform affects the content e.g. short-form broadcast content and long-form content on streaming services such as Netflix. Students will apply this knowledge to their own documentary practice by working individually or in groups to produce 2x2min short-form documentaries that demonstrate understanding of the codes and conventions of the expository and poetic forms. Students will also write a individual critical reflection on their developing documentary practice.

The Short Film

Short Films, as a delivery mechanism for a story, continue to be viewed by the film industry as both calling card for new film makers and as an area for experimentation. In addition to providing valuable experience, for students they are a demonstration of ability, creativity and potential. This module builds upon the skills and knowledge acquired in the Year 1 as itallows students to deploy and develop those skills and knowledge by working in groups to plan, write and produce a short film.It also enables students to critically reflect upon and understand their role(s), and the roles of others, within the production team. Moreover, the delivery of a short film utilises many of the transferable skills that are vital for those seeking professional employment in both the film and television industries. Students will formally pitch their scripts to a panel with accompanying visual and written material. The production teams will steer their projects through pre-production, production and post-production before screening the finished project. The ambition of this module is to create short films of sufficient creative, artistic and technical merit to allow for submission to student film festivals and competitions.

The Live Broadcast

One of the most complex, versatile, and exciting forms of television is a live programme that includes pre-recorded and/or live inserts. Whether your project is as small in scale as a two-camera regional news bulletin or as large as the opening ceremony for the Olympics, the core skills you need to master remain the same. The ability to successfully deliver a live television programme will equip you with the transferable skills necessary to deliver all other forms of broadcast television. Students who can deliver live programmes demonstrate that they can meticulously plan a project, work under pressure and deliver to deadlines timed to the second. This module introduces students to a multi-camera, studio-based, live television production environment. Students will work in small research teams to create insert material(video packages) and as such the module is an opportunity to consolidate core production skills learned to date. Students will also work in large production teams to create a half-hour live magazine style studio show - think of 'The One Show' as a structural template.

This module brings together skills in writing and research for factual based television programmes, presentation skills, editing, lighting, audio, producing, social media and camera craft. To enable the TV programme to be broadcast live, students must also engage with production theory such as compliance, editorial policy, clearance, copyright, the Broadcasting Code and Ofcom guidelines. Students must, therefore, learn to manage risk in all its forms as it relates to television production.

VFX and Virtual Production I

Visual Effects, or VFX, are usually associated with summer blockbusters - where story content has often been replaced by visual spectacle - but they are actually a staple across all the screen industries. VFX play an often invisible key role in supporting genres as diverse as War, Period Drama, Westerns, Thrillers and Musicals, offering access to stories and narrative ideas that cannot be addressed in any other way. Understanding VFX is essential to working in the modern screen industry. This module will introduce students to a range of digital VFX storytelling technologies such as After Effects and Virtual Production. Working in groups or as individuals, you will study a range of narratively focused but visually-realised VFX techniques, which will increase your skills as moving-image storytellers. This will also significantly enhance your employability whilst providing unique material for a showreel. Practical skills and theoretical understanding are linked in a written critical reflection on your developing VFX practice.

Year Three

Industrial Placement: Media (DPP) (This module is optional)

This module provides students the opportunity to experience life as a professional media practitioner by undertaking a placementover the course of the academic year. They will be expected to conduct themselves professionally and act as an ambassador for the University during this period. They will be supported by an academic Module Coordinator.

Media: Study Abroad (DIAS) (This module is optional)

This module provides an opportunity to undertake an additional academic year of study outside the UK. Those who successfully complete it get an extra qualification - the Diploma in Academic Studies (DIAS).

Year Four

Major Project I: Pre-production

This module will act as the culmination of students' creative, technical and theoretical study across the 3 years of their degree where they are given the choice of working individually or in groups to plan and research a Major Project in any of our core production areas: Fiction Film, Documentary, Live TV or Virtual Production. Live TV projects must be group projects. Students will produce a creative pre-production portfolio that evidences the creative and theoretical approaches that will underpin their projects as well as evidencing solid pre-production planning skills.

Major Project II: Production

In this module students will have the choice of working either individually or in groups to create a final year Major Project in any of our key production areas: Fiction Film, Documentary, Live TV or Virtual Production. Live TV projects must be group projects. Students will identify and analyse the theoretical and ideological underpinnings of their work by writing a 3000-word creative analysis of their Major Project.

Sound Production II (This module is optional)

This module allows students to further enhance their sound production skillsdeveloped in first and second year. Students will work in groups to create a sound-led short film and will also write an individual reflection on their production. The module focuses on the language and art of crafting engaging sound that supports the narrative goals of screen-based media. It introduces theoreticaland conceptual strategies that help you to consider how sound can function within cinema and provides an opportunity to develop skills that will enable you to realise your ideas.

VFX and Virtual Production II (This module is optional)

This module allows you to further enhance your VFX skills developed in Year 2. With a focus on narrative and VFX, and green screen techniques, you will work in groups to create a short VFX sequence. You will also write an individual critical reflectionon your production. This module will include a masterclass in the Virtual Production studio around halfway through the semester where you will consider how you might incorporate VP into your practice as a storytelling device.

Screen Analysis (This module is optional)

This module is an opportunity for students to focus on research and critical writing skills whilst demonstrating your ability to be self-motivated and independent in your learning. You will have the opportunity to explore a topic of your choice related to your degreeand will work towards producing a piece of written research on this topic under the supervision of the Module Coordinator.

Counter Screens (This module is optional)

Film and TV are powerful media that reproduce and uphold dominant narratives; however, they can also act as important spaces where counter-narratives develop that challenge dominant ideologies. In this module you will develop understanding of how film and TV encourage us to question the status quo and allow new norms to develop. With a focus on gender, sexuality, race and (dis)ability, by engaging with film and TV that might be considered ‘counter’ cinema e.g., ‘Promising Young Woman’ (2020), 'Gods Own Country' (2017), ‘The Boys’ (2019-present), students will expand their knowledge of how these media act as transformational societal forces. You will apply key theories and concepts learned in class to regular screenings, gradually working towards completing a creative portfolio evidencing your learning from, and engagement with, the film/TV content. You will enhance your learning further by analysing a film/TV clip via a group presentation.

Associate awards

Diploma in Professional Practice DPP

Diploma in International Academic Studies DIAS

Attendance

This course must be completed as a full-time degree over three years or four years should you opt to take a placement or international study year.

In line with the University’s attendance policy, attendance at all taught sessions is compulsory. It is expected that you will engage not only with the taught elements but also with independent learning.

Start dates

  • September 2025

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

Students are assessed through creative production outputs, written essays and presentations.

Attendance and Independent Study

The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.

Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:

  • Attendance and Independent Study

    As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until close to the start date and may be subject to some change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days and periods of attendance will be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.

    Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10, 20, or 40 credit modules (more usually 20) and postgraduate courses typically 15 or 30 credit modules.

    The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Teaching and learning activities will be in-person and/or online depending on the nature of the course. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.

    Postgraduate Master’s courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.

    Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.

  • Assessment

    Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be a combination of examination and coursework but may also be only one of these methods. Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes.  You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessments. This feedback may be issued individually and/or issued to the group and you will be encouraged to act on this feedback for your own development.

    Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification, the assessment timetable and the assessment brief. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.

    Normally, a module will have 4 learning outcomes, and no more than 2 items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised. The module pass mark for undergraduate courses is 40%. The module pass mark for postgraduate courses is 50%.

  • Calculation of the Final Award

    The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6, (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).

    Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Master’s degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.

    All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study.

    In Masters degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.

    Figures from the academic year 2022-2023.

Academic profile

The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 60% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.

Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (19%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (22%) or Lecturers (57%).

We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic and learning support staff (85%) are recognised as fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) by Advance HE - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.

The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise.  The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff.  This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.

Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.

Figures from the academic year 2022-2023.

Belfast campus

Accommodation

High quality apartment living in Belfast city centre adjacent to the university campus.

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Student Wellbeing

At Student Wellbeing we provide many services to help students through their time at Ulster University.

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Modules

Here is a guide to the subjects studied on this course.

Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.

Year one

Screen Stories

Year: 1

Screen Stories will invite students to explore how film and television dramas resonate with us in profound ways that shape how we see and experience the world, and therefore act in it. The module sets out to establish some key categories of screen analysis - classic narrative, trans-narrative forms, genre, questions of style, auteur and the ideology - and it provides students with many examples of how to analyse the film and television drama. By being better placed to analyse screen drama, the module strives to make students more self-conscious about the aesthetic choices they make in their own screen productions.

Cinematography

Year: 1

The module is an introduction to the essential skills of video production and the moving image. It allows students to acquire skills in video production, lighting and the moving image and develop a portfolio of short films which showcase their technical skills and competencies within a broader context of linear storytelling.

Sound Production 1

Year: 1

This practice based module considers core concepts in sound for screen and the association of sound and vision in storytelling. The module brings together the core practical skills needed for good location sound and the history and theory of sound for screen. It will also consider a range of technical and aesthetic considerations in producing sound for screen based media. Students will be introduced to sound capture and software manipulation for post production as well as techniques for studio and location sound recording.

Screenwriting

Year: 1

Screenwriting is as essential to the development and production of on-screen drama as storytelling is to being human. Complimenting the student's understanding and knowledge acquired during Storytelling for Screen, this module introduces students to the process of screenwriting; its key skills; and a range of technical, aesthetic considerations in developing a script for screen. It presents this writing practice in context of an understanding of the history and theory of screenwriting, and allows students top demonstrate their knowledge in this field.

Screen Theory

Year: 1

This module will invite students to think historically and critically about what appears in cinemas, on television and the various mobile devices that entertain and inform us. Students will be introduced to key intellectual figures whose thinking has helped us to understand the social and cultural significance of the media in all its variety. In this respect, the module underpins the screen production elements and helps students to understand the social formation of screen forms, and the theoretical and critical debates relevant to them. Students will look at semiotic, psychoanalytic and political economic approaches to understanding what appears on screen; they will look also at ideology, power and pleasure as these pertain to the media and screen cultures in particular.

Editing for Film and Television

Year: 1

This module introduces students to the theory and practice of visual editing. Students will be introduced to key concepts relating visual editing practice such as meaning-making and narrative construction. These will be related to key movements in editing practice such as continuity editing, montage editing and postmodern editing. Students will develop their editing skills through hands-on editing workshops using Adobe Premiere CC and the production of an editing practice portfolio.

Year two

Documentary Film

Year: 2

This module introduces students to key concepts in relation to the history, theory and practice of the documentary genre. It will cover key movements in the genre such as cinéma vérité and direct cinema, alongside contemporary sub-genres such as reality television and the mock-documentary. The module encourages students to consider how the platform affects the content e.g. short-form broadcast content and long-form content on streaming services such as Netflix. Students will apply this knowledge to their own documentary practice by producing 2x2min short-form documentaries that demonstrate understanding of the codes and conventions of particular forms: expository and poetic.

Screen Identities

Year: 2

Screen Identities introduces students to the historical and contemporary debates about national screen cultures and cultural identity. The module seeks to develop students' sociological and cultural understanding of questions of identity on screen.

The Short Film

Year: 2

In the Short Film module students will produce a 10 minute short fiction film, that draws upon skills already developed previously including sound production, cinematography and screenwriting. The module will seek to build an appreciation of the form as a powerful storytelling medium but also as a development tool for the artist and an industry tool to seek out new talent in fiction filmmaking. The module introduces students to a variety of short fiction film, television drama genres and styles; crime, soaps, comedy, documentary drama, realism, modernism and postmodernism. It invites students to produce a short drama for screen that observes generic codes and conventions of the cinema.

The Live Broadcast

Year: 2

A live television programme module that explores the skills and knowledge required to create live broadcasts. Following the full production cycle of live programme making for television, students get a direct engagement in industry practice, develop enhanced team working skills, an awareness of best practice in industry and build links with the wider community and broadcast industry.

VFX and Virtual Production 1

Year: 2

In this module students will work with green screen and LED monitors, camera tracking technology and computer generated photorealistic virtual worlds to enable them to discover exciting new visual effects techniques for use in their own work and in the industry today. The module will enable students to create new types of content and add value to their portfolio whilst enhancing their own employability and learning experience.

Year three

Industrial Placement: Media

Year: 3

This module is optional

This module provides students the opportunity to experience life as a professional media practitioner. They will be expected to conduct themselves professionally being an employee of a company and an ambassador for the University during this period. They will be supported by an academic coordinator.

Media: Study Abroad (DIAS)

Year: 3

This module is optional

This module provides an opportunity to undertake an additional academic year of study which is spent outside the UK. Those who successfully complete it get an extra qualification - the Diploma in Academic Studies (DIAS). Students will develop an enhanced understanding of the media and engage with it first-hand in international contexts. The opportunity to generate educational and cultural networks will be available to the student.

Year four

Major Project I: Pre-production

Year: 4

This module will act as the culmination of the students' theoretical study across the 3 years of their degree where they are able to independently plan and research a major project in the key practice areas of drama, documentary or a Live TV (Multi-cam) Project. Students will individually produce a portfolio that evidences the theoretical and professional pre-production planning and processes that underpin their Major Project.

Major Project II: Production

Year: 4

In this module students will create a final year screen production project under the guidance of an appointed member of Media Studies staff in the key practice areas of drama or documentary. Students will identify and analyse the theoretical and ideological underpinnings of their media practice by writing a 3000-4000 word textual analysis of their major project.

Screen Analysis

Year: 4

This module is optional

This module is an opportunity to focus on research and critical writing skills whilst demonstrating the student's ability to be self-motivated and independent in their learning. The module will explore a topic of the student's choosing related to the area of Screen or Media Studies and key skills needed to deliver this work will be delivered over two semesters with research skills being taught by academics and projects supervised throughout. Students will learn to author extended essays and develop research proposals. The module offers students a more traditional pathway through the Screen Production degree at level 6 and the opportunity to produce a dissertation appropriate to stage.

Virtual Production and Visual Effects 2

Year: 4

This module is optional

This module is a pioneering module in the use and application of real time visual effects for film and television. The module is one of the first of its kind in the UK and Ireland in Virtual Production. In this module students will work with green screen and LED monitors, camera tracking technology and computer generated photorealistic virtual worlds to enable them to discover exciting new visual effects techniques for use in their own work and in the industry today. The module will enable students to create new types of content and add value to their portfolio whilst enhancing their own employability and learning experience.

Year six

Virtual Production and Visual Effects 2

Year: 6

This module reflects a growing awareness of how visual effects are now common to all genres and levels of production across the screen industries. Anchored in a hybrid pedagogic approach which embeds technical workshops within a critical framework of theoretical considerations, screenings, dialogic lectures, workshop exercises and student-centred problem-based learning will create a matrix of situated learning. Using a Kolb (2013) Learning Style model, suited to the level of learning, it uses concrete experience of screenings, reflective analysis, technical demonstration, peer interaction and individualised or collaborative project-based problem-solving work to create authentic assessment of practical and intellectual assimilation. By completion students will be able to demonstrate their learning by creating a short VFX 'cold open' and by producing a piece of reflective writing which critically evaluates their understanding of the field.

Standard entry conditions

We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.

A level

Grades BBB

Applied General Qualifications

RQF Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma / OCR Cambridge Technical Level 3 Extended Diploma

Award profile of DDM

We will also accept smaller BTEC/OCR qualifications (i.e. Diploma or Extended Certificate / Introductory Diploma / Subsidiary Diploma) in combination with A Levels or other acceptable level 3 qualifications.

To find out if the qualification you are applying with is a qualification we accept for entry, please check our Qualification Checker - https://www.ulster.ac.uk/study/entrance-requirements/equivalence

We will also continue to accept QCF versions of these qualifications although grades asked for may differ. Check what grades you will be asked for by comparing the requirements above with the information under QCF in the Applied General and Tech Level Qualifications section of our Entry Requirements - https://www.ulster.ac.uk/study/entrance-requirements/undergraduate-entry-requirements

Irish Leaving Certificate

120 UCAS tariff points to include a minimum of five subjects (four of which must be at higher level) to include English at H6 if studied at Higher level or O4 if studied at Ordinary Level.

Irish Leaving Certificate UCAS Equivalency

Scottish Highers

Grades BBBCC

Scottish Advanced Highers

Grades CCC

International Baccalaureate

Overall profile is minimum 26 points (including 13 at higher level)

Access to Higher Education (HE)

Overall profile of 65% (120 credit Access Course) (NI Access Course)

Overall profile of 24 credits at Distinction and 21 credits at Merit (60 credit Access Course) (GB Access Course)

GCSE

For full-time study, you must satisfy the General Entrance Requirements for admission to a first degree course and hold a GCSE pass at Grade C/4 or above in English Language.

Level 2 Certificate in Essential Skills - Communication will be accepted as equivalent to GCSE English.

English Language Requirements

English language requirements for international applicants

The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.

Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.

Additional Entry Requirements

There may be limited places available for Y2 entry. Should there be availability personal statements (along with academic qualifications) will be used in the selection process.

Acceptable alternative qualifications include:

Pass HND with overall Merit to include 60 distinctions in level 5 credits/units may be specified.

Pass HNC with overall Distinction to include 90 distinctions in level 4 credits/units may be specified.

You may also meet the course entry requirements with combinations of different qualifications to the same standard as recognised by the University (provided subject requirements as noted above are met).

Exemptions and transferability

The University will consider applications for entry with advanced standing on the basis of experiential learning, prior certificated learning and where articulation arrangements exist (i.e. on the basis of the Northern Ireland Media Academy agreement).

Careers & opportunities

Career options

Career options

Illustrative graduate roles include:

  • Directors and producers
  • Writers and researchers
  • Cinematographers and camera operators
  • Production designers and production managers
  • Vision mixers

Relevant progression routes within the University include MA Journalism and MSc Digital Media Communication. In addition, the school aims to develop specialist postgraduate programmes that will serve as a relevant progression route across the various programmes within the Ulster Screen Academy. Across the UK and Ireland, there are further opportunities for relevant postgraduate study. Illustrative examples include:

  • Screenwriting for Television and Film (Royal Holloway)
  • Creative Documentary by Practice (UCL)
  • Global Digital Cultures (SOAS)
  • Global Creative and Cultural Industries (SOAS)
  • Film Curation (Glasgow)
  • International Film Business (Exeter)
  • Post Production in Film and Television (Solent)

Work placement / study abroad

On successful completion of Year 2, you have the opportunity to take the optional module Diploma in Professional Practice (DPP). This provides an opportunity for you to gain first hand practical experience within a professional environment prior to your final year of study. This module links the education experience to the real life situation of practice in the creative industries.

You also have the opportunity to take the other optional module, Diploma in International Academic Studies (DIAS). This optional module provides an opportunity for you to undertake an extended period of study outside the UK and Republic of Ireland, developing an international perspective and an appreciation of cultural sensitivities which are desirable qualities in any graduate. You will develop an enhanced understanding of the academic discipline whilst generating educational and cultural networks.

Apply

Start dates

  • September 2025

Fees and funding

Additional mandatory costs

Software for editing film and television projects will be provided when on campus as part of the significant facilities supplied to students to support their learning. Students wishing to edit film/sound/video away from the edit suites and off-campus may need to consider a student subscription to the Adobe Creative Suite. This is a small monthly cost and heavily discounted to students at university. Please see the Adobe UK website for accurate educational pricing. It is not a requirement.

Students will need to buy a USB 3 External Hard Drive for storing film rushes and completing their assessments. This size of storage should be at least 2TB and will cost between £50 and £90 as a one-off fee. The university does not supply these drivers and these can be bought freely.

It is important to remember that costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges) and normal living will need to be covered in addition to tuition fees.

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses (in addition to tuition fees) we make every effort to highlight them above. We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals, as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free Wi-Fi are also available on each of the campuses.

There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as a part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs, as well as tuition fees.

See the tuition fees on our student guide for most up to date costs.

Contact

We’d love to hear from you!

We know that choosing to study at university is a big decision, and you may not always be able to find the information you need online.

Please contact Ulster University with any queries or questions you might have about:

  • Course specific information
  • Fees and Finance
  • Admissions

For any queries regarding getting help with your application, please select Admissions in the drop down below.

For queries related to course content, including modules and placements, please select Course specific information.

We look forward to hearing from you.


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Disclaimer

  1. Although reasonable steps are taken to provide the programmes and services described, the University cannot guarantee the provision of any course or facility and the University may make variations to the contents or methods of delivery of courses, discontinue, merge or combine courses and introduce new courses if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Such circumstances include (but are not limited to) industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key staff, changes in legislation or government policy including changes, if any, resulting from the UK departing the European Union, withdrawal or reduction of funding or other circumstances beyond the University’s reasonable control.
  1. If the University discontinues any courses, it will use its best endeavours to provide a suitable alternative course. In addition, courses may change during the course of study and in such circumstances the University will normally undertake a consultation process prior to any such changes being introduced and seek to ensure that no student is unreasonably prejudiced as a consequence of any such change.
  1. The University does not accept responsibility (other than through the negligence of the University, its staff or agents), for the consequences of any modification or cancellation of any course, or part of a course, offered by the University but will take into consideration the effects on individual students and seek to minimise the impact of such effects where reasonably practicable.
  1. The University cannot accept any liability for disruption to its provision of educational or other services caused by circumstances beyond its control, but the University will take all reasonable steps to minimise the resultant disruption to such services.