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Film Studies


If you are enthusiastic about cinema and would like to develop greater understanding and appreciation of films and acquire practical skills, then this course is for you.

You will study a wide range of films, both mainstream and independent, American and British, as well as non-English language films. You will learn about a variety of film forms including silent films, short films and experimental films. There is also practical coursework with students able to either make a film or write a screenplay and create a storyboard.

You will study and be assessed on the following three components, over a two-year period:

Component 1

Varieties of film and filmmaking (Hollywood 1930-1990; Contemporary Mainstream and Independent US film; British film)

(35% of qualification) This component assesses your knowledge and understanding of six films including La La Land and Trainspotting. Specialist topics include film spectatorship and looking at films from different ideological perspectives.

Component 2

Global filmmaking perspectives (Global Film; Documentary Film; Silent cinema; Experimental Film)

(35% of qualification) This component assesses your knowledge and understanding of five films including Daisies and Mustang. Specialist topics include experimental approaches to narrative and the importance of digital technologies in making documentaries.

Component 3

Production Coursework

(30% of qualification) - In this component students will apply their knowledge and understanding of how films are constructed to their own film or screenwriting.

  • Production: Either a short film (4-5 minutes long) or a screenplay for a short film (1600-1800 words) plus a digitally photographed storyboard of a key section from the screenplay.
  • Evaluative Analysis: An evaluative analysis (1600-1800 words) of the production in comparison with other professionally produced short films or short film screenplays.

Zak Thorpe

Studied at Varndean College: A Level Film Studies & BTEC Creative Media Production (2013-2015)

Progression: Employment

Course Essentials

Courses Available
A Level
Entry Requirements
How The Course is Assessed
70% exam, 30% coursework
Career Pathways
Students can progress to Film and related courses at university, as well as a wide range of other courses. This course will also give you a showreel created using industry standard software Adobe Premiere Pro when applying for production courses/work experience/apprenticeships
Transferable Skills
Communication; teamwork; project management; interpretation; planning; script writing; filming and editing.
Other Information
There are guest speakers leading sessions on scriptwriting eg Will Jewell (South Coast) and Study Days at Depot Cinema in Lewes where film experts guide you through some of the set films. Students are also eligible to apply to become Young Programmers at Depot where they can learn about cinema programming and film marketing.
Enquiries To
Lisa Wardle: lww@varndean.ac.uk