Film & Digital Art

BA (Hons) - UCA Farnham - 2019

BA (Hons) Film & Digital Art, previously titled Digital Film & Screen Arts, places an emphasis on exploring the creative and conceptual possibilities of film, photography and hybrid digital practices.

You’ll be encouraged to push the limits of technology, experiment creatively and develop innovative ideas for projects that will equip you for a future in the creative industries.

The Film & Digital Arts course encourages you to explore practical relationships with the still and moving image, considering the creative potential of new technologies to develop your own unique visual style.

This takes place alongside critical engagement, with both traditional and newly-emerging technologies that re-define our relationship with contemporary media and digital culture.

Our graduates leave us with exceptional technical ability and artistic vision so they can go on to make ground-breaking achievements in the creative industries.

Whether you want to become a filmmaker, an artist or choose a career with a range of digital skills, as are now widely desired by employers, our Film & Digital Art degree gives you the freedom to experiment and develop those creative, critical and transferrable skills that will give you the ability to stand out and even revolutionise digital content as we know it. 

Film & Digital Art is part of our School of Fine Art and Photography. On the course you’ll be encouraged to develop your contextual and theoretical knowledge of not only moving image, but also photography, media and contemporary art – all while reflecting on your own artistic practice.

With our extensive professional facilities and studios at your disposal, you’ll explore a variety of concepts and skills in the still and moving image by undertaking exciting practical projects and tasks. 

Technical workshops will help you build a professional production skillset and, as you move through the course, you’ll broaden your understanding and application of these skills by engaging with a range of interdisciplinary processes and ideas.

This will enable you to develop an imaginative and technically accomplished portfolio. Studies will include digital filmmaking, photography, visual effects, sound design, expanded film and installation art, dance film and interactivity.

You may also create music video, animation, documentary or fact-based film and short dramas that challenge convention. 

You’ll master the core skills and language of still and moving image practice – such as research, pre-production, lighting, composition, camera operation, sound recording, digital postproduction and compositing. You’ll also look at transmedia and hybrid disciplines in order to enhance your own artistic and professional digital production practices.

The emphasis of this course is on combining new ideas with creative exploration; to investigate and push the limits of advancing digital technology – from cinema and television, to online video platforms, mobile and beyond.

This course has change title for 2019 entry. If you are interested in studying it for 2018 entry please see the BA (Hons) Digital Film & Screen Arts course page.

Length of study:

Three years full-time


UCA Farnham

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Entry requirements:

112 UCAS tariff points

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Next event

28 Nov 2018 UCA Open Day

Pre-degree & Undergraduate

Course details

  • Year 1

    In the first year, you'll be introduced to the University and the technical workshops and facilities available to you. On the course you’ll learn the technical and conceptual skills that will give you a solid foundation from which to explore your areas of specialist activity. 

    Moving Image Culture: Understanding & Interpretation
    We’ll introduce you to the key concepts of historical and contemporary moving image culture. You’ll become familiar with technical innovations and conceptual transformations, and will consider the ideological institutions and cultural practices that shape the production and experience of cinema, computer games and networked media – including the politics of representation.

    Imagining Reality
    You’ll explore documentary practices as well as the representation of reality through formal approaches such as the poetic, observational, reflexive, expository and performative. You’ll cover a range of diverse methodologies which challenge the notion of the real from historical and contemporary perspectives, while developing skills in film language, cinematography, sound recording, post-production techniques and research methods.

    Experimental Media
    You’ll be introduced to experimental film, video and sound art, and will examine the inter-relationship between experimental moving image, cinema and fine art practice. You’ll produce a portfolio of experimental video and sound work, enabling you to explore theoretical concepts through practice. You’ll experiment with avant-garde forms and create work that challenges conventions.

    You’ll further develop your visual language and familiarity with lens-based practices by considering the core skills of photography and image manipulation. You’ll explore aspects of identity and develop an awareness of the constructed nature of the ‘self’ in relation to gender, sexuality, socio-economic status, ethnicity and community groupings. You’ll produce a series of images that create meaning through montage and sequencing, and you’ll make a multi-screen moving image work.

  • Year 2

    The second year focus is on finding your own specialist way of working and you’ll be encouraged and supported to start working more independently. During this year you may also have the opportunity to study abroad. 

    Cultures of Convergence
    You’ll investigate the relationship between contemporary art practice and theory, and the proliferation of new technologies over the past three decades. You’ll expand your understanding of digital convergence, and consider the formation of new social and cultural identities under the influence of new technologies and hybridization. You’ll cover issues such as the critical approaches to new media technologies, interactive multimedia, hybrid artistic practices, post-internet art, and the construction of identity and difference in the digital age.

    Innovation & Interference
    We’ll encourage you to be inventive and imaginative in your interpretation of conceptual themes, and to develop your critical thinking within the context of moving image and hybrid digital practices. You’ll produce two productions – which could take the form of expanded cinema, an experimental art piece, an installation, an expanded documentary or narrative, or a video dance composition. You’ll reflect upon and refine your work, considering audience and dissemination as key factors.

    Professional Toolkit
    This technical skills development unit will support the ongoing development of projects during the year. You’ll build on your existing skills to develop specialist knowledge of areas of moving image and digital image production. The specialist areas you choose to focus on may include: digital video editing, visual effects, sound design, 3D or 2D modelling and animation, coding for interactivity, digital photography and studio production workflow.

    Study Abroad (optional)
    This optional unit will allow you to spend time in an overseas educational institution.

  • Year 3

    The third year will see you achieve a greater level of independence with self-managed research, study and practice, resulting in a final major project and a written dissertation. 

    This unit consists of a substantial period of sustained, individually negotiated research on a subject that is likely to be related to the contextual and/or theoretical concerns of your discipline or chosen area of practice, towards the provision of a structured written argument.

    Resolution 1
    This unit focuses on research development and pre-production. You’ll demonstrate your capacity for sustained and high quality work in group and/or independent study. You’ll develop a robust major project proposal and pilot outcomes – determining the subject, range and scope through supportive negotiation with your tutor. You’ll pitch your idea and begin the pre-production process.

    Resolution 2
    You’ll build upon the development of your work in Resolution 1 to produce a fully resolved body of high quality work, which you can confidently disseminate into the public domain – whether through exhibition, portfolio or other presentational form. You’ll further develop an understanding of the professional context and career potential of your talents and creativity, while reflecting upon your ideas and objectives. You’ll come away with a vibrant portfolio of work and a clear idea of your future goals.

  • Study abroad

    This course offers the opportunity to study abroad for part of your second year. To find out more about studying abroad as part of your course please see the Study Abroad section:

  • Fees

    Find out all about the fees for studying with us, as well as the grants, loans and other financial support you may be entitled to:


At UCA Farnham there are purpose-built film studios with dedicated technical support from industry specialists; Sound editing and mixing suites which include software such as Avid Media Composer, Symphony Nitris and Pro Tools; an on-campus media store with good supply of 16mm, super 16mm, digital HD video cameras and high-end sound recording equipment to hire and digital media suites with Macs and PCs with latest programmes for film editing as well as general design work.

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What our students say

Course connections

On this course, you'll be exposed to a world of opportunities

  • Industry links

    As a student on this course, you'll benefit from our strong industry links, which cover a broad range of sectors. We regularly host visiting lecturers who share their experiences and expertise, giving you a great opportunity to make contacts and gain invaluable insights into areas that interest you, as well as contextualise your studies. Recent guest lecturers have included: 

    • Commercial film and video directors
    • Music video companies
    • Visual effects artists
    • Experimental filmmakers
    • Video artists.

    We also have close connections with post-production facilities, games companies, production companies and art venues.

  • Careers

    We've produced a host of distinguished alumni, including national award winners. A number of recent graduates have gone on to work on Hollywood movies, BBC television programmes, and on projects with companies such as:

    • Cartoon Network
    • Boomerang
    • Conran Design Group
    • pd3
    • Incentivated
    • M&C Saatchi Mobile
    • Tiger Aspect Productions
    • Double Negative
    • The Mill
    • Framestore
    • Jim Henson's Creature Shop. 

    Roles include film and video directors, lighting camera ops, sound ops, producers and production managers, digital film editors, digital visual effects artists, CGI animators, sound designers, games designers, phone app creators, flash animators, experimental film and video artists, installation artists and digital photographers.

    DFSA graduates have also started their own companies, with recent successes including Kode Media, Bright Stem and This Place.

  • Further study

    You may also like to consider further study at postgraduate level.


How to apply - 2019 entry

I am a UK or EU citizen ...

I am not a UK or EU citizen ...

When to apply:

If applying via UCAS the application deadline is the 15 January. If applying directly to us, you can apply throughout the year but we recommend you apply as early as possible so you have time to arrange accommodation and visas.

More information:

Go to our how to apply pages

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

Along with your portfolio, the standard entry requirements* for this course are:

One of the following:

  • 112 new UCAS tariff points, see accepted qualifications
  • Pass at Foundation Diploma in Art & Design (Level 3 or 4)
  • Distinction, Merit, Merit at BTEC Extended Diploma
  • Merit at UAL Extended Diploma
  • 112 new UCAS tariff points from an accredited Access to Higher Education Diploma in appropriate subject
  • 27-30 total points in the International Baccalaureate Diploma with at least 15 IB points at Higher level, see more information about IB entry requirements.

And four GCSE passes at grade A*-C and/or grade 4-9 including English (or Functional Skills English/Key Skills Communication Level 2).

Other relevant and equivalent Level 3 UK and international qualifications are considered on an individual basis, and we encourage students from diverse educational backgrounds to apply.

*We occasionally make offers which are lower than the standard entry criteria, to students who have faced difficulties that have affected their performance and who were expected to achieve higher results. We consider the strength of our applicants’ portfolios, as well as their grades -  in these cases, a strong portfolio is especially important.

International entry requirements

To view the equivalent entry requirements for your country please select it in the list below.

Pick Your Country

Non-UK equivalent qualifications

English language requirements

Your portfolio

For this course we will require you to attend an Applicant Day and email your portfolio for assessment in advance. We’ll need to see a portfolio of work that should contain a show reel of moving images (maximum of five minutes) and/or a portfolio of visual work (photography, drawings, animations, web pages, etc.) We’re always impressed by students who show self-motivated projects they’re working on beyond their coursework, as this is an indication of real enthusiasm. Further information on how to compile a portfolio and the specific requirements for examples of work to be included will be provided on the Applicant Portal after you apply.

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