MA Film & Screen Media

The MA in Film Studies lived up to my expectations; all the topics and films that were outlined at the beginning of the year were covered extensively, giving me a good knowledge of film theory.

Shaun O'Connor, Writer-Director

I was provided with many wonderful opportunities for growth during the MA, which included representing UCC in Hamburg for the European University Film Awards and becoming a UCC Lord Puttnam Scholar.

Casey Hynes, Press and Marketing Assistant IFI

I continue to recommend both the MA in Film Studies and the study of film as an education and career choice to the hundreds of students that I encounter.

Michael Twomey, English Teacher - Filmmaker

Find Out More


CKE02 MA in Film and Screen Media (Full-time)

The MA in Film and Screen Media is a one-year taught course that offers students advanced-level critical skills in the discipline of Film and Screen Media, training in digital filmmaking, and transferrable IT/web skills. This exciting MA combines theory, analysis, history and practice, with an emphasis on encouraging students’ academic skills and creativity (in critical writing; in 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 involvement 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 and 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.

The MA in Film and Screen Media programme reflects the broad spectrum of research profiles and interests of our staff and is designed to provide our students with advanced knowledge of the history, theory, and aesthetics of international film and the emerging field of screen media. With its combination of theory and practice, as well as its interface with the Industry, the MA offers students a programme of study that is simultaneously extensive, eclectic and in-depth.

The unique “stream” approach and range of learning methods of the MA means that students have greater flexibility in shaping the kind of programme they want, and can pursue their interests in theoretical and cultural studies, creative practice, critical writing, or the culture industry. Students 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. Topics covered in the programme include: amateur filmmaking: theory and practice; the essay film; archives and creative reuse; nonhuman animals on screen; music and cinema; writing on cinema; mobile filmmaking; new media & new technologies: theory and practice; feminism/gender studies and film; national cinemas; independent cinema.

In addition to the taught modules, students 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. Check out a selection of our graduates' work here: MA creative practice playlist.

The MA in Film and Screen Media is open to candidates with a BA degree in a Humanities subject, who have taken some undergraduate modules in Film and/or Media Studies and related subject areas, or who can demonstrate equivalent familiarity with and expertise in the subject.

For further information visit the MA online prospectus: or Contact:

Check out testimonials from some of our alumni Here.

Watch our promo video Here.

Check out a blog, written by MA student, Gabrielle Ulubay, who detailed her time on the course in 2018-19, and her experiences in Ireland as an International Student.



Closing Date for EU and non-EU Applicants: June 30th

Closing Date for EU applications: UCC operates a rolling system of applications and offers. Please see dates below.

a. Round 1:  January 16th

b. Round 2:  March 7th

c. Round 3:  May 3rd

d. Round 4:  July 1st

Keep an eye on our website for updates on all application dates.

Entry Requirements

An applicant will have a primary degree of at least Second Class Honours Grade I 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 degree in a suitable subject may also be considered. These applicants may be requested to submit a proposal and/or attend an interview.

All applicants must submit two references, one of which should be from an academic mentor or lecturer. These should be uploaded with your application.

Application Details

Course Code: CKE02 MA in Film and Screen Media (Full-time)

Application for our postgraduate programmes is online at Please check out the closing dates and entry requirements at Courses | University College Cork ( before making your application. The application fee is €50 (for up to two postgraduate programmes). You will be asked to upload documents, including two references (one of which must be academic), to support your application as part of the application process. You can upload documents to the application portal once you have submitted your application. If you have any questions on the application process, please contact us through our web enquiry form.

The supplementary candidate's statement

This statement must be completed as part of your application. It is very important that you complete it with care, and use it to tell us about your background, your profile and your motivation to study film with us.

Useful information on the supplementary statement is available from the file below (click the link to download). Your statement can be uploaded with your application. If you wish to submit usbs/disks etc. you can submit them directly to the MA coordinator.

Supplementary statement: information



Students take 90 credits as follows:

Part I

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

plus 10 credits from the following:

FX6014 Introduction to Creative Practice (Filmmaking) (10 credits)

GE6020 Questions of Adaptation and Adoption (10 credits)
MU6037 Music and Cinema (10 credits)

Note: Not all optional modules may be available in a given year.
Note: FX6014 is not available to students that have completed the BA in Film and Screen Media

Part II

Students choose between:

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


Core modules:

FX6010 Irish Cinema: History, Contexts, Aesthetics (10 credits)

The module's objectives are to provide students with an understanding of the evolution of film culture in Ireland within historical and contemporary discursive frameworks, and to develop abilities at understanding and analysing a series of indigenous films and foreign films about Ireland as cultural artefacts and artistic expressions.

FX6016 Dissertation in Film and Screen Media Studies (40 credits)

The dissertation consists of an intensive period of research on a specific topic and writing of dissertation under the guidance of a supervisor (or co-supervisors).

FX6017 Film and Screen Cultures and Industries (20 credits)

The course introduces students to different aspects of the study of Film and Screen Media cultures and industries, with a particular emphasis on the interface between modes of production and exhibition/dissemination. Some of the topics addressed may include: Conventions and practices (narrative and form; space and frame; alternative and avant-garde practices; genre); Archives and curatorship; new media; Cultural Industries; writing on film. As part of the study of cultural industries, this module may involve an optional placement.

FX6018 Research Methodologies Seminar (10 credits)

The objective of this module is to introduce students to the research skills and methodologies necessary for postgraduate work, with special emphasis on research in Film Studies, and to assist them in the identification and development of an MA dissertation topic.

FX6019 Creative Practice Project (40 credits)
The module consists of an intensive period of research and critical reflection and the development of creative/practice-based skills and the creation of a project, on a specific topic, under the guidance of a supervisor (or co-supervisor).

Optional modules:

FX6014 Introduction to Creative Practice (Filmmaking) (10 credits)

This module introduces students to the theory and practice of digital media production. Students will work within assigned groups on the production of a short film and a documentary.

GE6020 Questions of Adaptation and Adoption: Re-Writings/Re-Viewings/Re-Readings (10 credits)

The module objective is to introduce students to the burgeoning field of adaptation studies (also known as comparative adaptation theory) as a sub-discipline of comparative literature, and to apply existing scholarship in this field and its critical apparatus to a selection of literary, film and graphic texts. Students will gain a critical understanding of the "transmigration of ideas" across time, cultural, social, political and geographical boundaries, as well as back and forth across media. Relatedly, students will also be able to identify and apply the main principles of intertextual criticism.

MU6037 Music and Cinema (10 credits)

The course will offer an introduction to the rapidly emerging field of film music studies, providing students with the critical tools to address a number of key questions: what functions does music perform in film? How does it relate to image and dialogue? Do we actually notice music in the cinema?


Scholarships and Prizes

Fee discount 25% for returning international students

UCC's College of Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences is pleased to welcome back international students who may have attended UCC and taken modules in the College of Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences in the past and now wish to return to UCC to pursue a taught Masters programme in the College of Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences.

As an incentive, Non-EU graduates (with at least a Second Class Honours grade 1 (or equivalent) who attended UCC in the past (for a semester, a year, or longer) and are now progressing to a taught Masters programme in UCC's College of Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences are eligible for a 25% discount on the usual Non-EU taught Masters programme fee.

If you think you might be eligible for the 25% discount, please contact

For more details on other funding schemes, please check out:


Read on to find out what the graduates of the MA in Film Studies are doing, and how the MA has impacted on their lives and careers. You will also learn about their experience of our MA programmes.

Casey Hynes, BA in Film and Screen Media (2018), MA in Film and Screen Media (2021).  

In March 2021, I graduated with an MA in Film and Screen Media. I entered the MA in 2019, following a year-long break from academia after my BA in Film and Screen Media graduation, as a way to reconnect with film on a theoretical, practical and personal level. The MA in Film and Screen Media has been a fantastic way for me to build upon many of the things I had learned during my BA, such as practical filmmaking and film theory, and to develop and fortify skills such as independent thought, critical thinking and self-driven learning and study, while also allowing me to rediscover my love and passion for the art of film.

I was provided with many wonderful opportunities for growth during the MA, which included giving a talk to new undergraduate film students and helping at Open Days, assisting at conferences and symposiums, representing UCC in Hamburg, Germany as the Irish delegate for the European University Film Awards (an official category at the European Film Awards), as well as allowing me the chance to become a UCC Lord Puttnam Scholar for the academic year 2019/20 and to work under the guidance and tutelage of Lord David Puttnam.

Despite the sudden move to remote learning and study as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic and government restrictions, the MA degree continued to be a great experience for me as the staff and lecturers ensured we all were well supported and prepared for our individual thesis research, which culminated in October 2020.

As a result of my wonderful year of studying again in the Department of Film and Screen Media, I have now added 2 more short films to my body of work; my own practical thesis project and a collaborative documentary ‘Romantic Ireland’s Dead and Gone’, made with my fellow Puttnam Scholars, which premiered at the 65th Cork International Film Festival in November 2020.

Following the end of my MA, I secured a position as the Marketing and Administration Intern and Schools Coordinator at the Cork International Film Festival, where I now currently work as the Marketing and Fundraising Assistant. I am also an editor and staff writer for the Be Nothing Club website, alongside some of my fellow BA and MA Film and Screen Media graduates.

No matter what field or career I choose to pursue within the areas of film and creative media in the future, I know that the MA in Film and Screen Media has not only given me the skillset, knowledge and drive to follow my goals, but has also provided me with a great number of friends, colleagues and connections who I will carry with me into the future. Whatever I choose to do, my MA in Film and Screen Media will help to get me there.

Amy O'Callaghan, BA in Film and Screen Media (2017), MA in Film and Screen Media (2018).  

I graduated from the MA programme in 2018. Having already completed the BA in Film & Screen Media, I found the MA to be a wonderful culmination of my studies, allowing me to fully utilise the skills that I gained throughout my BA. I greatly appreciated how the MA differed to the BA in that independent thought and research were more actively encouraged, allowing me to focus more on the areas of film theory that I was interested in, while still continuing to study the many fascinating modules that were provided to us, including Music and Cinema, which I would not have had the opportunity to study in my BA. (Watch Amy's final year thesis film here.)

During the MA I was fortunate to be offered the opportunity 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. The trip was incredibly fun and I really enjoyed the chance to visit Hamburg. It also helped me gain new skills, such as writing press releases, which I still utilize in my post-college work. 

Since finishing college, I have mainly worked in marketing and social media. I worked as a marketing intern for the Cork Film Festival, doing everything from social media to content writing to helping organize the festival’s secondary school programme. I also worked as a web content creator and graphic designer for a Cork-based business. While not specifically film-related, that job utilised many of the skills I gained in college, including writing, graphic design and photography.

Right now,  I am working freelance as an illustrator and I occasionally write articles on film, with further aspirations to be able to write professionally as well as work within the film festival sector. A thing I like about the MA programme is that there is no straight goal or occupation at the end, such is the case with other courses. Rather you are equipped with a large variety of skills spanning multiple disciplines. There’s a sense of freedom to this in that you can apply what you know to a multitude of situations and jobs spanning everything from education to production, marketing, archival work and so much more. It is still technically early days for me, but I know for certain that whatever path and occupation I stay on, what I learned throughout the MA programme will stand to me in whatever I do.

Rachel Gough, BA in Film and Screen Media (2017), MA in Film and Screen Media (2018).

The MA in Film and Screen Media is a truly fantastic course. The mix of practical filmmaking and more traditional teaching practices always kept things fresh and engaging and the modules and learning opportunities offered as part of the course proved invaluable to broadening my understanding of cinema and my skill base as a filmmaker. 

In addition to this, the faculty of the Film and Screen Media department are all top of their game. Their passion for their subjects and their specialism in their respective fields is infectious and they are always happy to point the way and aid students in their research.
Its also worth mentioning the great buzz in the department, where small class sizes encourage a warm and friendly atmosphere. 

I was also delighted with the freedom given to students to follow their own interest throughout the course, but particularly in regards to the selection of a PhD topic. It was so liberating and gratifying to be able to bring to bear the skills acquired during the year on a topic which I found so fascinating. 

After I completed my MA in Film and Screen Media I made the decision to undertake a PhD in the same field. My MA solidified my passion for cinema and the tuition and opportunities which I received during the MA gave me the expertise and confidence to take it further. I couldn’t recommend this course enough. 

Angela Carew, MA in Film Studies (2014). Now an Executive Assistant with the Cork Film Festival.

I thoroughly enjoyed studying for the MA in Film Studies. There were several interesting module choices to choose from. I always looked forward to these modules and gaining a deep understanding of film in a variety of ways.

The most challenging part of the course for me was the thesis; however, it was definitely the most rewarding. All of the MA staff were very supportive and through their help I was able to complete my thesis of which I am proud.

I am currently working for the Cork Film Festival as an Executive Assistant. The skills I gained throughout the MA have served me well throughout my time there. A lot of what I do is research, and all of the essays and especially the thesis have given me a great background in research skills.  I also need to use organisation and presentation skills, which I learned from preparing myself for my essays and thesis, and of course, the number of presentations we did with the use of PowerPoint. 

I highly recommend the MA in Film at UCC. 

Ruth Harrington, MA in Film Studies (2006). Now a Teacher

I knew upon entering into the MA that I wanted to be a secondary school teacher. I wanted to teach film which is now on the English course differently to how I was taught and I also wanted to come up with a film studies module for Transition Year. The MA provided me with ideas about how to choose films and how to analyse them, how to edit and how to present them.

After the MA I did the H.Dip. in Education and have been a secondary teacher ever since in a boys school. Every interview I did I was asked about the MA in Film Studies, and it has really helped me with teaching. The pupils connect with film and they love learning about the techniques a film employs. They also can express themselves a lot better using a film analogy.

The MA in Film Studies certainly lived up to my expectations. It was my favourite year in UCC having completed Arts, a H.Dip in Education and a counselling course. It was so interesting and informative and I have recommended it to everyone interested in film.

Shaun O’Connor, MA in Film Studies (2006). Now a filmmaker

Since completing the Master in Film Studies, I have been working as a director and editor of short films and music videos. My work has been screened and won awards at various film festivals. My film Nietzsche No. 5 won the award for Best Comedy at the Fastnet Short Film Festival 2011 and the Audience Choice Award at the Kerry Film Festival. Tearing Strips won the award for Best Comedy Under 5 Mins at the Charlie Chaplin Comedy Film Festival in Waterville, Co. Kerry. My music video for Conspiracy by Echogram won the award for 'Sexiest Video' at the 2011 Irish Music Television Awards. Also, I recently taught a weekend workshop in UCC on "Making DSLR Music Videos”. My work can be viewed at

The MA in Film Studies lived up to my expectations; all the topics and films that were outlined at the beginning of the year were covered extensively. The MA gave me a good  knowledge of film theory, which I have utilised when proposing video work to various clients. I thought that the exposure to and analysis of so many films that I’d never heard of was really great.

Jody Bartley, MA in Film Studies (2010). Now working at Dig Media Inc., Vancouver

I thoroughly enjoyed the whole course. I loved the content, the classes, the syllabus. I learned so much—my friends hate going to the cinema with me now! The family atmosphere that the lecturers encourage was one of the highlights for me; entering into the Film Studies department, one really feels as if they are taking a huge step up from undergrad level.

In November 2010, I moved to Vancouver, bc as part of the Generation Emigration, as the Irish Times have labelled it! After six months I was hired by Dig Media Inc. I am now production coordinator for the Resource Investing News Network. I love my job and it challenges me every day, it is very relevant to the city as Vancouver is a mining hub. We are currently rebranding to the Investing News Network to be launched in May. We base ourselves on the principle of producing original, unbiased content and provide education to investors. It isn’t the Arts section of The Times but it is one hell of a stepping stone.

They enquired about my MA in depth during my interview, so it was definitely my selling point. Rest assured, I haven’t given up on the North Hollywood film industry as of yet, I will keep chasing that rainbow!

Michael Twomey, MA in Film Studies (2010). Now a Teacher of English and a filmmaker

As a teacher of English I now use as much film as I can in class and find that students respond with great enthusiasm. I use film as a text but have also held film studies class exploring sound, lighting and camera work. I found it very encouraging how accessible film language is to young students and how comfortable they are with offering opinions on a wide range of film topics. I am currently shooting a film noir with first years, which encompasses scripting, acting, make-up, props and editing in a whole class project. I continue to recommend both the MA in Film Studies and the study of film as an education and career choice to the hundreds of students that I encounter.

In a more direct context related to learning from the MA I have taken a lot of inspiration into my own filmmaking and have been influenced by the films I watched on the course. Lighting, sound and in particular, space has played a major role throughout the editing process. I feel I now have a confidence with the language of film that previously had its source in instinct only and while instinct is the purest form from which art is driven, ultimately knowledge gives it direction.

Mikey Shinnick, MA in Film Studies (2011). Now working in an insurance company, and planning further study at graduate level

I chose to do the MA in Film Studies because I wanted to further my experience in the field of film and I wanted to further my education to achieve an MA.

The quality of the teaching and delivery of programme were excellent. All the teaching and delivery were detailed and extremely enjoyable. Each lecturer was very open and appreciative of debate and comments with regards to all topics which we studied.

I found the freedom of choice with what a student chose to study particularly liberating and extremely rewarding. The amount of guidance given to us on what thesis topic to chose was perfect because it led us to consider all the options on our own berth.

The MA was everything I hoped it would be. It opened my appreciation and love for film to a whole new level. The education that it has provided me will provide a set of skills I will no doubtedly be using for the rest of my life. From the research methods to the analytical reading of all cinematic movements, it will be a lesson greatly learned. I would recommend the MA to anyone who’s interested in the medium of film. It is a great MA that spans across many disciplines of study. Film can often be the most informative type of media we have in our world today, as it can provide an eye into a life or lives we would never see.

Brid Buckley, MA in Film Studies (2007). Now studying for an MA in Creative Writing

I was very happy with the quality of the teaching and the delivery of the programme. I thought there was a broad range of areas of film theory covered. A good chronological basis on the history of the development of film was covered. I appreciated that we were allowed audit extra classes if we liked. I am doing an MA in Creative Writing at the moment and I think the MA in Film Studies helped me develop analytical skills which I can now utilise in this course. 

Gemma McCarthy, MA in Film Studies (2005). Now working in administration at UCC

I was really looking forward to the course, and I came away satisfied. It encouraged me to continue to pursue my interest in film one way or another. Before I began the MA, I was worried that I would not know as much as others in the class, as an MA is so much more specific than a general degree, and it was also a small class. However, I had nothing to worry about, as we were all at pretty much the same level, and there was an opportunity for everyone to have their say whenever we discussed topics in the class.

Probably the most rewarding aspect of the whole MA was finally completing my dissertation. It’s so rewarding when you finally see it bound and complete. I actually really enjoyed the research process itself, particularly as I was writing on a topic I was truly interested in. I do think that completing a dissertation gave me new confidence in myself and the belief that I could achieve other things, be they study related or not, if I put my mind to it. You learn to work by yourself and become quite self-disciplined.

I keep my interest in film alive by participating in local film projects now and again; discovering new film genres and styles via the MA has been a great inspiration for how to tell a story on screen.

John, MA in Film Studies (2005). Now studying psychiatric nursing

The MA lived up to my expectations and it was a very enjoyable year. I have since moved on to a different discipline but find the research skills I developed to be currently indispensible. Also, my critical skills have been developed and I have discovered films and areas of interest I would never have encountered before.

I am now studying psychiatric nursing. Several of the skills learned during the masters benefit my studies—group therapy sessions often involve cinema, and research topics I encounter are easier to deal with due to the skills I learned.

David Mullane, MA in Film Studies (2009). Now film festival programmer

I joined the Corona Cork Film Festival staff in my final year of my BA and have remained there since in two positions: OutLook Programmer (programming the LGBT strand of the festival) and Jury Liaison Officer (responsible for the jury members and the awards process). I have also worked for two years as the festival's Industry Officer, liaising with MEDIA Desk Ireland. In March 2012, I became Festival Programmer of GAZE Film Festival, Dublin and delivered the twentieth edition of Dublin's LGBT film festival, which was its most successful festival to date. I am still in this position and continue to work for Corona Cork Film Festival also.

I was satisfied with what I achieved and gained from the MA in Film Studies. There was a large team of lecturers and tutors, with varied teaching styles and approaches and there was a generous choice of modules offered which allowed you to tailor your experience of the course to suit you.

The most rewarding aspect of the MA was the coursework and the rigours of same, especially the presentations we made, which really served to improve our public speaking and presentation skills. I often use these skills in my work now. Also, my knowledge base of film history is invaluable in my film programming profession.

Shane Twomey, MA in Film Studies (2008). Now a teacher

Last year I did the Postgraduate Diploma in Education from UCC, and I taught for the year while doing that. This year I’m doing some substitution in the same school, and trying to do a couple of courses in things that I’ve always wanted to do: filmmaking and production. In terms of teaching English in secondary school, media studies is on the Leaving Cert curriculum, so the MA in Film Studies definitely helps with that.

Aside from the hands-on filming aspect, I got everything I could want out of the course, and I’d do it all again in a heartbeat. I expected an informative, worthwhile, enjoyable year and that’s exactly what I got.

If you are a graduate of the MA in Film and Screen Media, please get in touch and let us know how you're doing! Email:

Department of Film and Screen Media

Scannánaíocht agus Meáin Scáileán

O'Rahilly Building University College Cork Ireland