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MA-Postgraduate Diploma Documentary Research for Film & Television

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  • Objectives
    At the heart of any successful documentary is great research to find and think critically about the characters, stories, archive, locations and visual style through which documentary is created. In this course we cover documentary history and theory by putting them into the contemporary context, - with substantial input from creative practitioners. We weave industry experience with academic insight across the field of documentary production; from docudrama to ethics and legal questions, investigative work to more artistic approaches. We focus on your creative and academic development to nurture documentary ideas you'd like to study and make, with exposure to a full range of documentary approaches. A new development on the course is a two-day practical workshop on camera, sound and directing, delivered by experienced professionals. This course is aimed mainly at people who want to work in the industry, as researchers, producers of documentaries, or for people who want to enhance their employability. But it will also be of interest to people who want to study documentary films from a more academic perspective. The course leader, Pratap Rughani, is an experienced award-winning producer of documentaries.
  • Entry requirements
    A first degree is not essential as equivalent professional experience can be considered. However, you should have a keen interest in documentary research and the desire to develop your own ideas. Some knowledge of general film and media theory and history is important, together with an awareness of current developments in the media. You should also know what kinds of documentary media interest you and why, together with an ambition to deepen your involvement in documentary research and/or production.
  • Academic Title
    MA/Postgraduate Diploma Documentary Research for Film & Television
  • Course description

    Year One

    -Documentary: Process & practice
    -Documentary: History & theory (1)
    -Documentary: Research approaches &  methodologies
    -Documentary: History & theory (2)
    -Elective Choice (A)  e.g. Camera workshop
    -Elective Choice (B)   e.g. Research placement
    -Applied Research: Narration, narrative scriptwriting -  script or narration

    Year Two

    -Ethics & Legal Issues
    -Applied Research: Investigative journalism and current affairs
    -Major Project - Individually supervised, you develop a full documentary feature or series idea to industry standards.

    Career Prospects

    Students go on to a range of production and acdemic research and film-making options; in the past two years alone a number of students have landed researcher/AP contracts and commissions for their ideas in broadcast and independent sectors. Much depends on individual focus and aspiration.

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