Lesson 2, Topic 1
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What to expect

November 29, 2018
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In general, the workload for a BA is quite intense as there are generally a lot of readings to do for Humanities courses, coupled with many essays, tutorial assignments and a few tests, depending on the subject.

Humanities degrees give students the tools to learn how to think outside the box, to deal with problems and find solutions as well as be critical and question the world around them

When studying Film & Media you can expect to learn the following:

  • Essay writing
  • Reading
  • Analytical skills
  • Critical thinking
  • Research skills
  • Ability to tailor writing skills for different audiences
  • Ability to develop ideas
  • Communication skills

The way of teaching ranges from institution to institution, but students can expect a mix between theoretical and practical learning.

From a film perspective students learn:

  • how films are made
  • how they are written
  • how they did the cinematography
  • the history of film
  • how to produce a film

The major offers a grounding in the history, theory and analysis of Film and TV.  Within the Film Production major there is also opportunity to practice screenwriting, production and direction. Some institutions are more focused on the theoretical than the practical work, whereas others are the opposite.

“During my  second year at UCT, I changed from a General BA to a specialisation in the Film & Media department (Screenwriting, to be precise). This allowed me to explore my passion for writing more intensely. I had an awesome, open-minded supervisor and total freedom in terms of the story I wanted to tell. Throughout my specialisation I continued my studies in Film & Media, since this is a requirement for the Film & Media major, but also enjoyed exploring interesting elective courses from other departments. These electives proved to be very useful bridges for Film & Media content analysis (Social Sciences, Religious Studies, etc.)”  

– Annique Bolliger (BA Film & Media Production, specialised in Screenwriting; Honours in Film & Television Studies)

From a media perspective students learn:

  • the different styles of writing within media production
  • how media influences society
  • the different forms of media.

Students are trained in writing and editing for a wide range of media. Some institutions are more focused on the theoretical than the practical work, whereas others are the opposite.

Specialisations include: news reporting, investigative journalism, freelancing, sports journalism, advertising, documentary, writing for television (soaps and sitcoms), youth culture and the media, writing for magazines, feature journalism and travel writing.