To declare a major in Film, students must have completed a minimum of 30 units and have satisfactorily completed Film 10 or 20 with a grade of C or higher.
Student must receive C- or higher in all of the classes for the major in order for them to count towards requirements. Please note that courses for the major in which a student earns below a C- will not be counted, and the student will need to retake that class to have it count.
Student must have at least a 2.0 GPA in the major in order to graduate.
We do not offer a minor in Film, although we do offer a departmental Summer Certificate in Film & Media Industries and Professions.
Many Film & Media majors elect to complete a second major in addition to Film & Media. Students must be able to complete both majors within a within their given number of terms, or have a unit total of less than 136 units if pursuing additional semesters. Students can have no more than two courses which are counted towards both majors’ requirements. Students considering a double major should consult with their Undergraduate Major Advisors in each department.
Lower Division Requirements
12 lower-division units are required for the major.
Two courses are required of all majors:
- Film 10 (Film History and Form), 4 units, generally offered Fall, Spring, and Summer. This course is an introduction to the early history of cinema (from its nineteenth-century prehistory to the sound cinema of the 1930s) and to the interpretive skills necessary for close analysis of film. NOTE: this is a revised and renumbered version of Film 25A in the previous curriculum.
- Film 20 (Film and Media Theory), 4 units, generally offered each Fall, Spring, and Summer. This course is an introduction to the theoretical study of a range of media, including photography, film, television, video, and print and digital media.
One of the three following courses completes the lower-division course requirement:
- Film 30 (Film Aesthetics), 4 units, generally offered each Fall and Summer. This course familiarizes tudents with some of the major technological and aesthetic innovations of the past 80 years which have given rise to the cinema as we know it today. NOTE: this is a revised and renumbered version of Film 25B in the previous curriculum.
- Film 35 (Digital Media), 4 units, offered in Spring. This course examines the ways in which digital media first developed and have come to shape our engagement with contemporary culture, with a particular focus on aesthetics, form, and politics.
- Film 45 (Television Studies), 4 units, offered in Fall. This course provides an overview of the history of television as a dynamic set of technologies, industrial practices, and cultural forms.
- Film 25 (Introduction to Digital Video Production), 4 units, taught Fall and Spring as a studio course. (This course does not count toward the major elective requirement as it is a lower-division course.) NOTE: this is a renumbered version of Film 26 in the previous curriculum.
Upper Division Requirements
A minimum of 32 upper-division units are required for the major.
Upper-Division Core Requirement. Successful completion of three of the following four courses (12 units):
- Film 125 (Documentary Forms), 4 units, generally offered in Spring. Examines the ways in which documentary impulses and forms are present in various media—photography, film, video, new media. NOTE: this is a revised version of Film 128 (Documentary Film) in the previous curriculum.
- Film 135 (Alternative and Experimental Media Art), 4 units, generally offered in Fall. The course explores the international development of artist-made, experimental and avant-garde film, electronic or new media practices.NOTE: this is a revised version of Film 129 (Avant-Garde Film) in the previous curriculum.
- Film 145 (Global Media), 4 units, generally offered in Fall and Spring. This course focuses on topics in national, transnational, and global cinema, television, photography, and/or new media, examining the ways in which shared cultural discourses, institutions, histories, and modes of production are negotiated through various media practices within and between individual cities, nations, regions, and/or global networks. NOTE: this new variable-topics course could include some of the courses taught as Film 160 (National Cinema) in the previous curriculum.
- Film 155 (Media Technologies), 4 units, generally offered in Spring. This course focuses on the history, theory, and experience of old and new media technologies, examining the emergence and implementation of media technologies, the discourses surrounding them, their use by media institutions and/or artists, and the forms, styles, aesthetics, modes of address, and experiences they afford. NOTE: new course design for this curriculum.
Upper-Division Elective Requirement. Successful completion of a minimum 20 units of elective courses chosen from the following
- Film 170 (Special topics in Film and Media), 4 units, generally offered in Fall and Spring. NOTE: this is a renumbered version of Film 140 in the previous curriculum.
- Film 171 (Special Topics in Film Genre), 4 units. NOTE: this is a renumbered version of Film 108 (Film Genre) in the previous curriculum.
- Film 172 (Special Topics in Auteur Theory), 4 units. NOTE: this is a renumbered version of Film 151 (Auteur Theory) in the previous curriculum.
- Film 177 (Entertainment Law), 4 units. Taught in Summer only. Can be double-counted as a Film major requirement and FMIP certificate requirement.
- Film 180 (Introduction to Screenwriting), 4 units.
- Film 181 (Advanced Screenwriting), 4 units.
- Film 182 (Television Screenwriting), 4 units.
- Film 184 (Documentary and Nonfiction Film Production), 4 units.
- Film 185 (Narrative Production), 4 units.
- Film 186 (Advanced Digital Video), 4 units.
- Film 187 (Special Topics in Media Production), 4 units.
- Film 190 (Capstone Seminar), 4 units.
- Film 194 (Advanced Film Writing), 4 units.
- Film H195 (Honor’s Thesis), 4 units.
These opportunities may supplement the upper-division elective coursework, although only four units may be counted towards the 32 upper-division unit requirement for the Film majors.Students who have identified an external internship for which they wish to receive credit should consult with Jeffrey Skoller, the Undergraduate Faculty Advisor, regarding enrollment in Film 197B. Only 4-units of internship units. Film 197B: Film Study for Majors (3 units),
In addition, a list of pre-approved film elective courses and course descriptions drawn from course offerings by affiliated faculty across the campus is available each semester. The faculty Undergraduate Major Advisor (UMA) will distribute and post the approved list to Film majors each term. Students should consult with the UMA regarding course selections.
Up to two (8 units) pre-approved extra-departmental elective courses can be counted for credit towards the major, this also includes approved courses while taken abroad; all other courses must be taken within the Department of Film & Media.
*Of the 20 elective units required for the major, only one 4-unit course may be taken P/NP; all other courses must be taken for a letter grade.
All students in the major are required to submit a 3–5 page, double-spaced capstone statement to the department in the semester of graduation explaining their chosen path through the major, pointing to connections between the courses and projects undertaken, as well as noting particularly illuminating discoveries or achievements. The capstone statement is not graded but will be evaluated for its fulfillment of the requirement. NOTE: The Capstone Statements are not tied to the Capstone Seminars available as electives in a student’s senior year. Students are not required to enroll in a Capstone Seminar course in order to prepare their statements.