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Film Studies AS/A2 Level at Alton College

Course description

If you are passionate about film and enjoy analysing what you see, then Film Studies could be the course for you*.

In the AS you will study how films are put together in terms of lighting, sound, camera movement and special effects. You will explore the teen movie genre and cinema movements which represent a specific time and place (e.g. 1960s Britain). You will also learn about the process a film goes through from the earliest stage of production to its release at the cinema and the response of the audience.

In the A2 you will examine more closely the role of the director and carry out a study of World Cinema, focusing on a group of foreign language films. You will build on your knowledge of the film industry and analyse how mainstream cinema affects us on an emotional level.

Course content

Classroom activities are varied and you will learn through discussion, working in small groups and working individually. You will learn how to make notes from screenings, and plan and write essays, as well as being taught practical skills such as storyboarding and editing.

You will be expected to do 4 to 5 hours of homework each week - this may take the form of research, reading, or writing an essay.

Entry requirements

Students studying a 3 or 4 AS level programme should normally have achieved an average GCSE point score of 5.5 or above and at least a grade C in Maths and/or English (unless specified otherwise). Students with a point score between 4.5 - 5.5 will normally take a mixture of Subsidiary Diplomas and AS levels.

You do not need to have done any film or media studies before - but a genuine interest in the history of film is necessary.


AS Level
Exploring Film Form - coursework (40% of AS)
British and American Film - 2 hour 30 minutes written examination (60% of AS)

A2 Level
Film Research and Creative Projects - coursework (50% of A2)
Varieties of Film Experience: Issues and Debates - 2 hour 45 minutes written examination (50% of A2)

Financial information

All students will be expected to provide their own stationery, computer disks and calculators (where appropriate). Costs are outlined below:

While there are copies of all the films we study in the College library, some students find it useful to buy DVDs/videos of focus films.

Recommended: Textbook – approximately £20

If the costs of equipment, materials and trips may cause you financial hardship, you may wish to read through details of our financial support scheme on our website.

Future opportunities

Film Studies is a widely respected A Level, and one that develops a number of important skills - including written and oral communication. All universities accept Film Studies, and students have gone on to a wide range of courses and careers. Many of our students opt to carry on with Film at university - others have gone on to study English, Media, Art, Photography, and Philosophy. Several students have begun careers in the media by working as runners on film sets.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Alton College directly.

Last updated date: 05 August 2016

Key information