Introduction

Are you motivated by images or words? If you are more interested in the power of the image and its meaning, this programme is for you. Images, whether moving or still, play a central role in shaping the world around us and the lives we lead. The MLitt Film and Visual Culture develops critical skills and theoretical understanding of visual culture in its social and historical contexts, through discussion and analysis of film, photography and theoretical writing.

This programme is studied on campus.

The MLitt in Film and Visual Culture develops critical skills and theoretical understanding of visual culture in its social and historical contexts through discussions and analysis of film, photography and theoretical writing.

Engaging with a wide range of material, including film, photography and digital media, the MLitt in Film and Visual Culture introduces you to the key ideas and debates which have shaped understanding of visual culture during the twentieth and twenty first centuries. Two core courses provide a grounding in theoretical perspectives and critical skills. Optional modules allow you to explore visual culture in different historical and cultural contexts and include a practice-based pathway. Core courses prepare you for your dissertation project, which allows for the sustained investigation of a topic identified by you, working in consultation with your supervisor. The course will be of interest to you if you are from the following background including: Film Studies, Cultural Studies, English, Modern Languages and Art History. It will also be of interest to you if you have a professional background in the visual arts and media.

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Key Programme Information

At a Glance

Learning Mode
On Campus Learning
Degree Qualification
MLitt
Duration
12 months or 24 months
Study Mode
Full Time or Part Time
Start Month
January or September

What You'll Study

Semester 1

Semester 1

You will take one core course and an optional course, which explores different modes and forms of visual culture in a range of cultural and historical contexts.

Compulsory Courses

FS5017 Introduction to Visual Culture and Theory

Introduction to Visual Culture and Theory (FS5017) - 30 Credit Points

This course will begin by taking a historical perspective to discuss some of the key interventions which have helped define visual culture as a field of enquiry, including work by Benjamin, Barthes, Burgin, Mitchell and Rosler among others. It will move on to explore some key theoretical concepts and paradigms, such as authorship, spectatorship, materiality, semiotics, digital culture and the archive.

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Optional Courses

Plus 30 credit points from the following options:

Narrative Within the Frame (FS5021) - 30 Credit Points

This theory-led practice-based course will investigate different narrative forms of image making, including paintings, photographs and films by different artists from a range of historical periods. We will be considering narrative form and content as shaped by subject selection, composition and framing, use of colour or black and white, and control of light. These themes will be considered from aesthetic, historical and theoretical perspectives. Through a series of seminars, video production and post-production workshops and screenings, students will learn approaches to moving image making that will culminate in the completion of a practice-based video project.

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Work - Based Placement in Film and Visual Culture (FS5025) - 30 Credit Points

Students will gain practical experience in the film industry and/or visual culture organisations, providing real work experience in preparation for the next steps following their degree.

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Mlitt Special Study in Film and Visual Culture (FS5026) - 30 Credit Points

This course is designed to allow the creation of a programme of individual study where other appropriate course options at masters level are not available. It will run at the discretion of the programme co-ordinator. In discussion with a designated supervisor students will be able to identify and design a programme of research and study, which may include the completion of an undergraduate course, with assessments appropriate to masters-level work, or which may be consist of a short programme of research conducted over one semester. This programme of study will be subject to approval by the convener of the relevant M.Litt programme. Where appropriate courses at masters level are available, this course will not run.

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Semester 2

Semester 2

You will take one core course and an optional course, which explores different modes and forms of visual culture in a range of cultural and historical contexts.

Compulsory Courses

Critical Analysis of Visual Culture (FS5517) - 30 Credit Points

Students will be introduced to the critical analysis of visual culture through discussion of classic studies from secondary literature across film, photography and visual culture. Students will identify and define a corpus of primary visual material in consultation with the course leader, to serve as the basis for student-led workshops and subsequent assessed coursework. Workshops will involve close analysis and discussion of specific examples, by way of preparation for the assessed essay and blog post. The latter will focus on a single image and will train students in writing for a non-academic audience.

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Optional Courses

On Documentary: History, Theory and Practice (FS5521) - 30 Credit Points

This course will explore the history of the documentary film and theoretical approaches for interpreting its context, allowing students to engage in production by putting into practice methodologies they have studied through a series of seminar discussions, workshops and screenings. Students will work in teams to research and video a project, utilizing the Media Lab’s facilities to complete the work through post-production.

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Work - Based Placement in Film and Visual Culture (FS5525) - 30 Credit Points

Students will gain practical experience in the film industry and/or visual culture organisations, providing real work experience in preparation for the next steps following their degree.

View detailed information about this course

Mlitt Special Study in Film and Visual Culture (FS5526) - 30 Credit Points

This course is designed to allow the creation of a programme of individual study where other appropriate course options at masters level are not available. It will run at the discretion of the programme co-ordinator. In discussion with a designated supervisor students will be able to identify and design a programme of research and study, which may include the completion of an undergraduate course, with assessments appropriate to masters-level work, or which may be consist of a short programme of research conducted over one semester. This programme of study will be subject to approval by the convener of the relevant M.Litt programme. Where appropriate courses at masters level are available, this course will not run.

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Sound Design for New Media (MU5509) - 30 Credit Points

This course introduces theoretical and practical aspects of sound design in a wide range of media, inclunding film, TV series, games and interactive platforms. Along with an in-depth analysis of sound design in films and TV series, such as Mirror by Tarkovsky, Gravity by Cuarón, and Weekend by Godard among others, students will acquire practical tools, technologies, and methodologies to create sound design for film and fixed media. Students are also introduced to Unity and FMOD, a game sound design framework used by AAA games, and encourage them to explore possibilites of sound design with new technologies.

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Semester 3

Semester 3

Dissertation in Visual Culture

Compulsory Courses

Dissertation in Film and Visual Culture (FS5902) - 60 Credit Points

Candidates will be required to research and write a 12,000-word dissertation on a subject and in an area approved by the Programme Co-ordinator.

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Course Availability

We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

How You'll Study

The programme is delivered by means of seminars and workshops which are tutor- and student-led as appropriate.

Learning Methods

  • Individual Projects
  • Research
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops

Assessment Methods

Assessment methods include essays, reports and other coursework. The MLitt also requires a 15,000-word dissertation, while the diploma consists of coursework alone.

Why Study Film and Visual Culture?

  • The MLitt in Film and Visual Culture offers advanced training in the critical understanding of visual culture.
  • You engage with a wide range of material, including film, photography and digital media.
  • The course introduces the key ideas and debates which have shaped understanding of visual culture during the twentieth and twenty first centuries.
  • Two core courses provide a grounding in theoretical perspectives and critical skills. Optional modules allow students to explore visual culture in different historical and cultural contexts, and include a practice-based pathway. Core courses prepare students for their dissertation project, which allows for the sustained investigation of a topic identified by the student working in consultation with their supervisor.
  • The programme will be of interest to you if you have a background in Film Studies, Cultural Studies, English, Modern Languages and Art History. It will also be of interest to you if you have a professional background in the visual arts and media.
  • Students studying on the MLitt in Film and Visual Culture become associate members of GWW, University Centre for Visual Culture.
  •  The School of Language, Literature, Music and Visual Culture is at King's Campus, dating from 1459, the campus is a major tourist attraction and is part of 'Old Aberdeen.' The campus provides wide ranging visual culture dating back to its inauguration.
  • Members of the School of Language and Literature play a leading role in several specialised research centres at the University of Aberdeen, reflecting the diverse range of interests and areas of expertise of our staff. The centres bring together groups of scholars from a range of academic disciplines, and foster links with other universities.
  • There are a number of centres are based in the School, including the Centre for Celtic Studies, the Washington Wilson Centre for Visual Culture, and the Grierson Centre for Textual Criticism and Comparative Literary History.
  • The city of Aberdeen offers wide ranging visual culture such as museums, art gallery's with notable and well known artists, live music covering all tastes, theatre, and within wider Aberdeenshire there is a rich heritage sector with a castle trail, gardens, and architecture of note within the city and shire.
  • Aberdeenshire is unique in its history by being influenced by Celts, Anglo Saxons, Scandinavians, French and Belgians and many more cultures influencing languages, dialects, foods, architecture, and much more.

Entry Requirements

Qualifications

The information below is provided as a guide only and does not guarantee entry to the University of Aberdeen.

Students are normally required to have a good 2.1 degree (or its equivalent) in a subject of relevance to Film and Visual Culture, such as Anthropology, Art History, English, Film Studies, Media Studies, Modern Languages, Sociology or Theatre Studies.

Please enter your country to view country-specific entry requirements.

English Language Requirements

All students entering the University must provide evidence that they can use English well enough to study effectively at the University of Aberdeen.

Details of our English language entry requirements can be found on our English Language Requirements webpages. This programme requires that you meet the College of Arts and Social Sciences Postgraduate Standard level of English proficiency.

If you have not achieved the required scores, the University of Aberdeen offers pre-sessional English courses. Further details are available on our Language Centre website.

Nationals of some English-speaking countries or those who hold degrees from some English-speaking countries may be exempted from this requirement. Details of countries recognised as English-speaking can be found on our English Language Requirements webpages.

Document Requirements

You will be required to supply the following documentation with your application as proof you meet the entry requirements of this degree programme.

Degree Transcript
a full transcript showing all the subjects you studied and the marks you have achieved in your degree(s) (original & official English translation)
Personal Statement
a detailed personal statement explaining your motivation for this particular programme

Fees and Funding

You will be classified as one of the fee categories below.

Fee information
Fee category Cost
Home / EU / RUK Students £6,000
Tuition Fee for 2017/18 Academic Year
Home / EU / RUK Students £6,300
Tuition Fees for 2018/19 Academic Year
International Students £14,300
Tuition Fee for 2017/18 Academic Year
International Students £15,000
Tuition Fees for 2018/19 Academic Year

Additional Fees

  • In exceptional circumstances there may be additional fees associated with specialist courses, for example field trips. Any additional fees for a course can be found in our Catalogue of Courses.
  • For more information about tuition fees for this programme, including payment plans and our refund policy, please visit our InfoHub Tuition Fees page.

Funding Opportunities

The SFC Postgraduate tuition fee scholarship may be available for those classified as Home/EU fee status students for this programe. Visit the scholarship page for more information.

Our Funding Database

View all funding options in our Funding Database.

Careers

As well as providing research training to enable students to go on to pursue an academic career, this programme will also be of interest to those wishing to follow a career in arts management, curation and related fields.

Career Opportunities

  • Arts Manager
  • Film Producer
  • Web Developer

Our Experts

Programme Coordinator
Dr Amy Bryzgel
Dr Paul Flaig

Information About Staff Changes

You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

We Are Visually Programmed

We communicate and react to visual stimulation first and foremost, and analysing visual culture develops crucial understanding upon the arrival of the new digital visual revolution 

Get in Touch

Contact Details

Address
School of Language, Literature, Music and Visual Culture
University of Aberdeen
King's College
Aberdeen
AB24 3UB