Two students using filming equipment


Cinematography *

* subject to final UWE approval

Please note that new student recruitment to this course has been suspended for the September 2018 intake. Applications for 2019 should be made from September 2018. If you would like information about our alternative courses, please visit the MA Documentary Production or MA Radio Documentary course pages.

About this course

Entry year:
Course code:
Film and Journalism
Bower Ashton
One year
Programme leader:
Abigail Davies
Key fact:
An industry partnered MA developing creative, professional cinematographers with a critical understanding of film culture and business.

Page last updated 21 March 2018


Why study MA Cinematography?

MA Cinematography is aimed at creative graduates and existing filmmakers wishing to develop their cinematography skills to a professional level. A highly practical course, it is underpinned by relevant contextual studies.

Offered as a full-time, the course will enable you to develop as a creative, knowledgeable, disciplined practitioner equipped to step into a wide range of camera and lighting roles within a constantly evolving film and television industry.

You can expect to build solid technical skills across a range of camera equipment and formats, as well as an understanding of advanced lighting and aesthetic principles. Importantly, you will learn how to connect with and communicate stories through cinematic language.

Real world insights

Our exceptionally strong relationships with high calibre industry partners will enable you to advance as a strong, creative image-maker in the expanding world of twenty-first century filmmaking. The course will be delivered in purpose-built new facilities housing industry standard technologies.

No other city outside London has such a concentration and diversity of media companies. Bristol has been identified by government as the core city for creative industries and technology and innovation, making it an excellent location for this field of study.

Industry-ready skills

By providing crucial insights into the film business, the course will help you develop a range of transferable skills, enabling you to confidently and professionally collaborate with a creative team in a film, TV studio or on location. Practical live briefs and other exciting industry-integrated learning opportunities will foster resourcefulness and enterprise to help you stand out in today's market.

Exploring the ethical considerations of media production, from broadcast compliance codes to sustainable filmmaking, will ensure you are equipped to make considered decisions on how your work engages with and incorporates diverse communities.

A wider view

Alongside practical skills, you will develop a deep understanding of film history and theory from leading academics and industry practitioners in the field. You will benefit from the strong base of practice-led research within the Faculty, which has an international reputation through its Research Centres.

Cinema screenings, master-classes, events and festivals will be at the heart of the curriculum. You will meet internationally renowned cinematographers and film professionals at Cinefest, UWE's own International Festival of Cinematography - the only one of its kind in Western Europe. 

You will also have the opportunity to participate in our unique cutting-edge camera tests, developed in collaboration with the Cinematography Mailing List, giving unrivalled access to the most up-to-date advances in camera technology.  

Watch: The learning and teaching experience



Course structure will be available shortly.

Learning and Teaching

The course offers a varied and engaging schedule of study including academic lectures, practical instruction, seminars, and masterclasses with working cinematographers. Guest speakers will introduce and contextualise work. You will also have the chance to attend field trips to camera rental houses, production facilities and laboratories.  

You will be encouraged to attend film festivals to gain unique perspectives on industry practice. Screenings and discussions will enable students to analyse and critique a range of film and moving image work and the practice of classic and contemporary cinematographers.  

Throughout the course, you will undertake both group and individual project work supported by tutorials, mentoring, workshops and independent study. Part of your final assessment will be based on the production of a body of cinematic work.

You will have access to all relevant teaching and learning materials via Blackboard, UWE's online learning portal, as well as and the university's extensive online library resources.

See our full glossary of learning and teaching terms. 

Study time

Offered as a full-time course, contact time averages at 18 hours a week, although this will vary widely depending on the module and focus of study. For instance, there will be some full weeks of teaching activities and other weeks where contact time is limited to three hours of project supervision.

Over the course of the year, you will be expected to carry out a significant degree of independent study, attending relevant screenings and events and undertake substantial cinematography practice.  


We will make use of a variety of assessment tools throughout the course, including essays, reflective diaries, presentations, portfolios, coursework and a professional practice report.

See our full glossary of assessment terms.



Placements are an essential component of the course, enabling you to put your skills into practice in real world settings while gaining invaluable professional experience.

You may want to pursue work-integrated learning opportunities relevant to your areas of interest, which will contribute to the development of your professional development plans.


Optional field trips and site visits will be available as part of the taught programme, providing excellent insights into the film and TV industry.

Study facilities

You will use the new Production Studios at City Campus, Bower Ashton. With state-of-the-art facilities focused around filmmaking, animation and photography, you will have the use of two large, flexible studios designed for film and television production and photography, three moving image practice studios, a substantial media equipment store, loans desk and a student production hub. 

New specialist post-production facilities include six digital production labs for picture and audio editing, digital animation and VFX, six specialist edit suites, two colour grading suites, two dubbing theatres, a sound production studio and a stop-motion facility.

Learn more about UWE Bristol's facilities and resources.


Careers / Further study

Successful graduates will be equipped to work in a wide range of film industry contexts, in roles such as Director of Photography, Lighting Cameraperson, Lighting Director Camera Operator, Camera Assistant, Digital Loader, DIT and Camera Trainee. 

Other career options include events and theatre lighting, grip work and post-production, as well as independent filmmaking and working with film organisations such as the BFI, Creative England and other regional film agencies. This Masters is also an excellent path of study for those pursuing academic work or who wish to go on to Doctoral level study.

Our award-winning careers service helps you develop your employment potential through career coaching, a vacancy service for internships, placements, jobs, global opportunities, volunteering and community activity plus support for entrepreneurial activity, and access to employer events.


Full Time Course

FeesAmount (£)
Home/EU-Full Time-Award Fee9500
Home/EU-Full Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)792
International-Full Time-Award Fee13000
International-Full Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)1083

Supplementary fee information

The additional costs listed are those that students could reasonably expect to incur during their studies and are for items not covered by the standard tuition fee. These could be materials, text books, travel, clothing, software or printing.

For information about funding for postgraduate courses see our fees and funding pages.


Entry requirements

The course is aimed at graduates and existing filmmakers wishing to develop their creative cinematography skills to a professional level and underpin their practice with rich and relevant contextual studies.

Candidates should normally have a relevant good honours degree. Those without a degree but who possess significant filmmaking experience, and who can demonstrate a commitment to reflecting on their practice, are also eligible. Students with a lower class of relevant degree or students holding a degree in an unrelated field may also apply but will need to demonstrate compelling motivation to study on the course as well as some relevant experience.

International students are especially welcome as we have a commitment to global film education.

All candidates invited for interview must be able to demonstrate their cinematic flair and experience via a practical portfolio.

English Language Requirement

If your first language is not English, you normally need a minimum score of 7.0 in IELTS (including 7.0 in the written element) or equivalent.

For further information

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