Film Studies

Film Studies

Inspiring and equipping young people to be able to access, enjoy, understand, create, explore, and share film in all its forms throughout their lives.

Curriculum Intent

To develop learners that are:

  • Critical thinkers
  • Adventurous creators
  • Expressive individuals
  • Sensitive contributors
  • Reflective practitioners
  • Active collaborators
  • Confident explorers
  • Informed participants
  • Discerning audiences
  • Enthusiastic advocates
  • Independent learners
  • Engaged citizens

Curriculum Vision: Creative, Critical and Cultural

The Film curriculum is engaging and coherent.

The film curriculum is enjoyable; it engages students and develops their curiosity through the use of both visual and written mediums. The students will experience Film Studies holistically. They will understand the relationships between discrete areas of film and the interrelated nature of the discipline.

The Film curriculum is student-centred and explores local and global contexts.

The film curriculum will develop individual student interests, passions, skills, and understandings. It will be designed with diverse types of learners in mind. The course will include materials that are both local and global; developing an awareness of how people and cultures are represented in film.

The Film curriculum is rigorous and broad in scope.

The curriculum covers a range of areas of film, through both theory and practice. Film is a collaborative, dynamic, visual, aural, synesthetic, and kinaesthetic practice, and the manner of teaching is appropriate to its form. Learning is through action and collaboration.

The Film curriculum is authentic and transparent.

The film curriculum is relevant and contemporary. The students engage with ‘real life’ material and processes that are employed by filmmakers. Students will understand their own contexts, create screenplays, and short films to fulfil their own intentions, considering their audience and the impact they wish to have on others.

The Film curriculum creates internationally minded, lifelong learners.

Using the BFI Film Education Framework and IB Learner Profile as vehicles, the film curriculum will create thoughtful and internationally minded young people. Students will examine the links between film and its context, and understand that the study of film is also the study of the world we live in.

The Film Studies curriculum intent will foster five key dispositions for lifelong learning: curiosity, empathy, aspiration, tolerance and enjoyment.

Intent in Action

Students will engage with the following learning experiences to activate the intent behind the Film curriculum:

  • Engage with film in all its forms.
  • Experience creative opportunities in filmmaking and screenwriting.
  • Experience film in the cinema.
  • Reflect on national and global cultures.
  • Discover film from the past.
  • Identify, question and reflect on ideas and values.
  • Experience the art of film.


Taught in: Years 10-11

What will I study?

You will study the following areas:

  • US Film 1930-1960
  • US Film 1961-1990
  • US Independent film
  • Global Film
  • Contemporary UK Film

You will study the following concepts:

  • Film Technology
  • Narrative & Genre
  • Representation
  • Film Style
  • Film Criticism

You will study the key elements of film form including cinematography, mise en scene, editing and sound. You will also study the contexts of your chosen films and what was happening when the film was made. What can the film tell us about history and society at that time?

How will I be assessed?

There are two exams at GCSE, each worth 35% of the qualification with the remaining 30% assessed by Production work. Each exam lasts 90 minutes and consists of three different sections:

Component 1: Key Developments in US Film

  • Section A: US Film Comparative Study
  • Section B: Key Developments in Film & Film Technology
  • Section C: US Independent Film

Component 2: Global Film – Narrative, Representation & Film Style

  • Section A: Global English language film
  • Section B: Global non-English language film
  • Section C: Contemporary UK film

Component 3: Creative Production (Non-Examined Assessment)

There is a creative production element which allows you to showcase the screenwriting skills you have developed during the course by producing a:

  • Film Extract Screenplay (with shooting script)
  • Evaluative Analysis

What skills will I develop?

Studying Film enables you to see the world in a completely different light and develop a wide range of transferable skills for further education, work and life:

  • Creative Thinking
  • Critical Thinking
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Film Analysis
  • Textual Analysis
  • Communication
  • Research skills
  • Literacy
  • Technical competencies (i.e. film editing)

Students of Film Studies are the students of the future, gaining the skills needed to develop healthy careers and great academic minds.

IB Film Studies

Taught in: Year 12 - 13
Exam Board: IBO

Film is a powerful and stimulating art form and practice.

The DP film course aims to develop students as proficient interpreters and makers of film texts. Through the study and analysis of film texts, and through practical exercises in film production, the film course develops students’ critical abilities and their appreciation of artistic, cultural, historical and global perspectives in film. Students examine film concepts, theories, practices and ideas from multiple perspectives, challenging their own viewpoints and biases in order to understand and value those of others.

DP film students experiment with film and multimedia technology, acquiring the skills and creative competencies required to successfully communicate through the language of the medium. They develop an artistic voice and learn how to express personal perspectives through film.

The film course emphasises the importance of working collaboratively. It focuses on the international and intercultural dynamic that triggers and sustains contemporary film, while fostering in students an appreciation of the development of film across time, space and culture. DP film students are challenged to understand alternative views, to respect and appreciate the diverse cultures that exist within film, and to have open and critical minds.

At the core of the DP film course lies the need for creative exploration and innovation. Students are challenged to acquire and develop critical thinking, reflective analysis and the imaginative synthesis that is achieved through practical engagement in the art, craft and study of film. Candidates will work within the following core syllabus areas;

  • Reading film
  • Contextualising film
  • Exploring film production roles

Standard Level/ Higher Level