Film Programming and Curating MA
Birkbeck, University of London
Key Course Facts
A first of its kind, this MA in Film Programming and Curating explores the diverse ways in which films are selected and presented to an audience. Studying in the heart of London, one of the world’s leading media hubs, this course takes full advantage of its location to help you build professional networks, visit various sites of exhibition (from galleries and museums to film festivals and cultural centres) and learn about contemporary film programming and curatorial practice.
The course provides a strong academic foundation and relates the latest theoretical thinking to critical practice. It encourages an independence of intellectual thought and spirit, equipping you with the necessary skills and historical and critical knowledge to nurture film and film culture. The course offers a historical, intellectual and conceptual understanding of film programming, curatorial practice and moving image culture. The curriculum involves:
theories of spectatorship, the audience and the changing conditions of film reception
sites of exhibition and the architecture of the filmic experience
the role of the archive, film canons and the exhibition of great collections
the practicalities involved in programming a film and locating audiences for it.
The course combines these strong historical, theoretical and academic foundations with site visits across London, as well as providing internships at leading cultural institutions and film centres, such as the ICA and BFI. You will have the chance to programme events for organisations as diverse as BFI Education, the Korean Cultural Centre and other film centres around London.
Our teachers are internationally distinguished academics, while visits from cultural practitioners will introduce you to experienced film programmers, curators and art practitioners. Making full use of the opportunities offered by our proximity to London’s vibrant film culture, this course provides a first step towards building a career in film programming and exhibition, or for further research into the cultures of curating and curatorial practice.
The award-winning Birkbeck Cinema is central to the course, where most of our classes take place. The cinema is equipped with 35mm and state-of-the-art DVD projection, which offers you an opportunity to experiment with programming and watch films in the best possible conditions. Located in central London, in the heart of historic Bloomsbury, Birkbeck is within easy reach of cinemas and galleries, as well as facilities such as the British Film Institute and the British Library.
You will receive accreditation, sponsored by Birkbeck, to the BFI London International Film Festival and the Edinburgh International Film Festival.
The Birkbeck Institute for the Moving Image (BIMI) runs a busy, intellectually stimulating programme of events, including conferences, screenings and film-related events of all kinds, which students on this course are more than welcome to attend. You will have the opportunity to participate in and attend the Essay Film Festival, jointly run by BIMI and the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), with free admission to events hosted at Birkbeck.
The School of Arts offers a number of bursaries for postgraduate students.
The School of Arts is an official partner of the ICA in London. Opportunities for students have included a year’s free membership of the ICA, private views, discounts on all talks and events, free members' screenings and £3 cinema tickets on Tuesdays, up to 25% off ICA Artists' Editions and a monthly e-newsletter.
Entry Requirements / Admissions
Requirements for international students / English requirements
IELTS academic test score (similar tests may be accepted as well)
- Mphil / PhD
Get advice on which foundation courses are best for you to still be able to join Film Programming and Curating, MA.
A second-class honours degree (2:2 or above), or overseas equivalent.
You are required to complete a 700-1000-word written exercise by choosing a film that you have recently seen and explaining how you would programme it for an audience.
Tuition Fees Film Programming and Curating MA
|England UK||£9030||year 1|
|Northern Ireland||£9030||year 1|
Additional fee information
Average student cost of living in London
|Water, gas electricity, internet (at home)||£50|
|Takeaways / food deliveries||£30|
|Going out / entertainment (excl.alcohol, food)||£24|
|Holidays and weekend trips||£78|
|Transport within city||£17|
|Self-care / sports||£20|
|Stationary / books||£13|
|Mobile phone / internet||£13|
|Cable TV / streaming||£7|
|Average student cost of living||£1092|
London costs approx 34% more than average, mainly due to rent being 67% higher than average of other cities. For students staying in student halls, costs of water, gas, electricity, wifi are generally included in the rental. Students in smaller cities where accommodation is in walking/biking distance transport costs tend to be significantly smaller.
Positions of Birkbeck, University of London in top UK and global rankings.
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What students say about studying Film Studies in the UK?
About Birkbeck, University of London
Birkbeck, University of London (BBK) was established in 1823, and takes a different stance towards admissions than many other universities. Applicants are encouraged by BKK to apply even if they don’t possess the traditional qualifications normally required, as applications here are also considered based on an assessment of your knowledge on the subject, and any work experience you might have. Being located in the very centre of London, students will have all the advantages of the city’s public transport connections, as well as the chance to live in such a diverse and vibrant city with all that it offers.
Where is this programme taught
|Program||University||Student satisfaction||Unemployed||Dropout||Tuition (UK)||Tuition (International)||UCAS Tariff||City|
|Film and Media with Integrated Foundation Year BA (Hons)||University of Sunderland||89%||0%||10%||£9250||£13000||102||Sunderland||On campus Full-time|
|Film Production BA (Hons)||Canterbury Christ Church University||70%||0%||7%||£9250||£14500||113||Canterbury||On campus Full-time|
|Dance and Film & Visual Culture BA (Hons)||Liverpool Hope University||71%||10%||20%||£9250||£11400||106||Liverpool||On campus Full-time|
|Film and Literature MA||University of Essex||71%||10%||20%||£8760||£18800||106||Colchester||On campus Full-time|
|Film & Visual Culture and Human Biology BA (Hons)||Liverpool Hope University||71%||10%||20%||£9250||£11400||106||Liverpool||On campus Full-time|
|Film and Television BA (Hons)||University of Bristol||39%||0%||0%||£9250||£24700||132||Bristol||On campus Full-time|
|Film & Television Studies/Spanish MA (Hons)||University of Glasgow||87%||5%||2%||£27750||£79290||182||Glasgow||On campus Full-time|
|Screenwriting and Film with Foundation Year BA (Hons)||Sheffield Hallam University||76%||1%||15%||£9250||£14415||113||Sheffield||On campus Full-time|
|Film Studies and Media BA (Hons)||University of Keele||80%||0%||10%||£9250||£15500||107||Newcastle under Lyme||On campus Full-time|
|Creative Enterprise (Film Pathway) MA||University of Reading||80%||0%||10%||£9250||£18650||107||Reading||On campus Full-time|