UCC Postgraduate courses

Film & Screen Media

Course Fact File
Duration1 Year Full-time
Teaching ModeFull-time
NFQ LevelLevel 9
Closing DateRolling deadline. Open until all places have been filled. Early application is advised.
Non-EU Closing DateOpen until all places have been filled or no later than 30 June. Early application is advised.
Start Date9 September 2024

Course Outline

Our MA in Film & Screen Media is a one-year taught course that offers students advanced-level critical skills in the discipline of Film & Screen Media, training in digital filmmaking, and transferrable IT/web skills.

This exciting MA combines film studies in theory, analysis, history and practice, with an emphasis on encouraging students’ academic skills and creativity (in critical writing; filmmaking; film/media journalism; cultural administration). Students will benefit from specialised tuition in the areas of film and screen media and digital filmmaking and may also avail of voluntary work for cultural projects and film festivals, such as the Fastnet Film Festival, Schull.

With its annual seminar series of visiting speakers and guest practitioners, as well as mentorship by resident UCC/Arts Council Film Artist, UCC Film & Screen Media gives students ample opportunities to meet and be taught by professionals and experts. We are also the only Irish partner in the European University Film Award — an award of the European Film Academy (EFA) and Filmfest Hamburg presented and voted for by university students across Europe — with one student gaining the opportunity to travel to Germany to participate in the Awards.

Programme Content

The MA in Film & Screen Media is a 90-credit programme with both a taught and a research component. Students take core modules and a selection of optional modules and complete either a traditional research dissertation or a practice-based project under expert supervision.

You can opt to complete a practice-based project, incorporating a short film/visual project and a reflective piece (40 credits) or a 16,000-word research-based dissertation (40 credits).

Our students avail of specialised tuition in the areas of film and screen media and digital filmmaking, and benefit from state-of-the-art facilities, that include large screen and surround sound system; Apple™ lab; digital cameras and industry-standard filmmaking equipment; and teaching and performance space, all located in the heart of one of the most beautiful University campuses in Ireland. 

Your can avail of a selection of option modules, in film studies, in filmmaking, in cultural/film studies, as well as a core module that offers advanced-level studies in film and screen media. In total students take 90 credits as follows:

Part I

  • FX6010 Irish Cinema: History, Contexts, Aesthetics (10 credits)
  • FX6017 Film and Screen Cultures and Industries (20 credits)
  • FX6018 Research Methodologies Seminar (10 credits)

plus 10 credits from the following:

  • GE6020 Questions of Adaptation and Adoption: ReWritings/ReViewings/ReReadings (10 credits)
  • FX6014 Introduction to Creative Practice (10 credits)**
  • MU6037 Music and Cinema (10 credits)

Part II 

  • FX6016 Dissertation in Film and Screen Media Studies (40 credits) OR
  • FX6019 Creative Practice Project (40 credits)


  • *FX6014 is an introductory module designed only for students that have not previously studied practical filmmaking.
  • Not all optional modules may be available in a given year.

Academic Programme Catalogue

See the Academic Programme Catalogue where you can search for the complete and up-to-date content for this course. Note that the modules for all courses are subject to change from year to year. For complete descriptions of individual modules, see the Book of Modules.

Course Practicalities

This full-time, one-year degree adopts a range of teaching methods and techniques, including traditional lectures, seminars, small-group tutorials, film screenings, practical labs, group work. You attend taught modules throughout the two teaching semesters (September to March), then focus entirely on your dissertation/project during the summer months. Some modules may involve some extra hours of self-directed filming and editing. Students may have opportunities to avail of voluntary work in film festivals or cultural events.  You are required to attend all classes and to prepare for seminar discussion by reading assigned materials and by viewing prescribed films.

Modules use a variety of forms of assessment including essay writing, oral presentations with technological support, portfolios, treatments, films and creative/practical projects. By being exposed to diverse forms of assessment, you acquire a broad set of discipline-specific as well as transferable skills that prepare you for different professions or for further study at postgraduate level in film or related areas. In addition to the taught modules, you can choose what kind of final project to undertake under expert one-to-one supervision, be it a research-focused dissertation or a creative practice-based portfolio.

Teaching staff

The MA is taught by Film and Screen Media lecturers based in the Department of Film and Screen Media, School of Film, Music and Theatre; by PhD and Post-doctoral Researchers in Film and Screen Media at UCC; and by lecturers based in other Schools and Departments including German and Music.

With its Masterclass Series of visiting speakers and guest practitioners, as well as mentorship by our resident UCC/Arts Council Film Artist as part of UCC Creative, UCC Film and Screen Media provides our students with ample opportunities to meet and be taught by professionals and experts.

Why Choose This Course

The MA in Film & Screen Media’s distinctive blend of theory, creative practice, and industry links is unique in Ireland. Students will benefit from state-of-the-art facilities, that include large screen and surround sound system; Apple™ lab; digital cameras and industry-standard filmmaking equipment; and teaching and performance space, all located in the heart of one of the most beautiful University campuses in Ireland. 

Placement or Study Abroad Information

Students may have opportunities to avail of volunteering work with one of our Industry partners (Cork Film Festival; Schull Fastnet Film Festival; European University Film Award - EUFA). 

Skills and Careers Information

Students of the MA in Film & Screen Media will avail of a range of modules that combine theory/analysis with practice. The emphasis is on equipping students with transferrable skills in digital filmmaking, IT, and writing. Film and Screen Media offers a dynamic interface with the Industry and students can avail of cultural industry placements and masterclasses and tuition from Industry professionals. 

What can I do after I graduate with an MA in Film Studies?

Graduates of our master’s degree have developed careers in media and filmmaking, in cultural industries (including the programming and administration work with major film festivals); second and third level teaching/lecturing; journalism (national and international); library information. While studying on the MA in Film & Screen Media students have the opportunity to avail of placements within the Industry that will equip them with transferable skills and professional experience. 

Occupations associated with the MA in Film Studies degree:

  • Film and Media Industries
  • Cultural industries
  • Journalism
  • Teaching
  • Academia
  • Event management
  • Public Sector

Read what some of our graduates are doing now:

Benjamin Rupprecht, MA in Film and Screen Media

I started the MA in Film and Screen Media after I did my BA in Theatre and Media Studies in Germany and worked for nearly three years in the German film industry. Being from there, the decision to move to Ireland and proceed my academic and future professional career on the island came through a general interest in the progressive developments of the current Irish film industry. As I wanted to deepen my academic understanding of film and enhance my research skills after my three-year break from studying, choosing the MA in Film and Screen Media at UCC seemed like a perfect fit and has entirely met all my expectations. One of my main goals in the one-year course, was to find a space to experiment in practical filmmaking with likeminded individuals outside of an industry driven context. I definitely found this creative freedom in the well selected group of fellow course mates and in the diverse opportunities the programme offered. Especially the “Introduction to Creative Practice” course provided us with great chances to learn through the diverse short film assignments, always driven by its collaborative approach as a key to every aspect of filmmaking.

The theoretical focus of the course helped with gaining a better understanding of cinematic language in general and its cultural relevance. Besides a deeper dive into Irish film history, the course offered a wide focus on international film traditions and in the comparably short amount of time that a MA course provides, covered a wide range from academic research and film critics to documentary and fictional film making.

During my degree, I also had the honour of being selected as a participant of the Lord Puttnam Scholarship. The six seminars taught by Film Producer & Chair of Atticus Education, Lord David Puttnam, and the task to shoot a short film together over the summer, gave me both the courage and inspiration to proceed my career as a filmmaker and focus more on my own projects.

It has also been through a recommendation from the UCC Film and Screen Media Department, that I now ended up finding my first gateway into the local film industry and just finished my first Irish job as an assistant director for the fourth season of BBC’s The Young Offenders.

Amy O'Callaghan, MA and BA in Flim and Screen Media

Having already compled the BA in Film & Screen Media, I found the MA to be a wonderful culmination of my studies. It allowed me to utilise skills gained during my undergraduate, while allowing greater focus on independent thought and research, allowing me to focus more on the areas of film theory that I was interested in, as well as apply this theory to the creation of a short thesis film as opposed to the standard

written thesis, which challenged me creatively and allowed me to improve my filmmaking skills in direction, camera and editing.

One of the best opportunities I received during the MA was the chance to travel to Germany as the Irish student jury member for the European Film Awards. During my stay in Hamburg, I met other film and media students from throughout Europe, and was able to gain a fascinating insight into the film industries of other European countries as well as a broader image of European cinema as a whole.

Since finishing college, I’ve worn many hats. After finishing the MA, I was very lucky to be able to work as a marketing intern in the Cork Film Festival, doing everything from social media to content writing to helping organise the festival’s Post-Primary school programme. This work introduced me to the Irish Film Institute and its education department, where, years later I now work as an Education Officer, promoting film education and media literacy and delivering an extensive film programme for Primary and Post-Primary students. In my job, I pull from what I learned in my BA and MA everyday, be it for film programming, developing educational materials, graphic design or managing the more technical aspects of our film programme including file management and delivery. A thing I like about the MA and BA programmes is that they equip you with a large variety of skills spanning multiple disciplines, which in turn can be applied to a multitude of jobs, including education, production, marketing, archival work and so much more, providing a great sense of freedom that I’m sure will stand to me for the rest of my career.


An applicant will have a Second Class Honours, Grade I in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8 or equivalent) in the Humanities. Successful applicants will normally have evidence of successful performance in undergraduate modules taken in Film Studies and/or Media Studies and/or practical/professional expertise or qualification in the area.

Applications from students with a Second Class Honours, Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8 or equivalent) in a suitable subject may be considered under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). These applicants may be requested to submit a proposal and/or attend an interview.

All candidates must satisfy a Selection Committee and must provide two written references.

For Applicants with Qualifications Completed Outside of Ireland

Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements. For more information see our Qualification Comparison page.

International/Non-EU Applicants

For full details of the non-EU application procedure visit our how to apply pages for international students.

  • In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.
  • Note that not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above. For more information contact the International Office.
English Language Requirements

Applicants who are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university-approved English language requirements. Vsit our PG English Language Requirements page for more information.

Fees and Costs

Postgraduate EU and International Fees 2024/2025

See our Postgraduate EU and Non-EU (International) Fee Schedule for the latest information.


If your course requires a deposit, that figure will be deducted from your second-semester fee payment in January.

Fee payment 

Fees are payable in two equal instalments. First payment is at registration and the balance usually by the end of January.

How can I pay? 

See different options on our How Do I Pay My Fees? page.


See the Contact Us section on the Fees Office page.

How To Apply

1. Check Dates: Check the opening and closing dates for the application process in the fact file boxes at the top of the page.

2. Gather Documents: Scanned copies of supporting documents have to be uploaded to the UCC online application portal and include:

  • Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC.
  • Any supplementary items requested for your course if required.

3. Apply Online: Apply online via the UCC online application portal. Note the majority of our courses have a non-refundable €50 application fee.

Any questions? Use our web enquiry form to contact us.

Additional Requirements (All Applicants): Please note you will be required to provide additional information as part of the online application process for this programme. This will include the following questions:

  • Please describe your motivation and readiness for this programme
  • Please enter all relevant work experience that will support your application.
  • Please detail your research interest(s).
  • In addition to your previously declared qualifications, please outline any additional academic courses, self-learning and professional training relevant to your intended programme.
  • Please describe your portfolio of work or achievements.
  • Please upload a portfolio of relevant work.
  • After the application is submitted, you will be required to enter the names and email addresses of 2 referees (one academic and the second professional/experience) and request 2 references from the application portal.

The closing date for non-EU applications is Open until all places have been filled or no later than 30 June. Early application is advised.

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For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact