Run by School of Arts, Culture and Language
20.000 Credits or 10.000 ECTS Credits
Organiser: Dr Dyfrig Jones
Overall aims and purpose
On this short practical documentary filmmaking short course you'll learn the creative principles and technical skills needed to produce a short documentary film. In addition you will engage with some of the theoretical and ethical questions related to documentary filmmaking.
You'll learn self-shooting skills, with a focus on shooting interviews, and on learning the fundamentals of observational filming. You'll also be given opportunities to explore alternative forms of documentary storytelling, using sound, still images and archive footage.
By the end of the module, you will have completed work on a documentary film of between 5-10 minutes in length, as will have written about the filmmaking process.
During the first half of the module students will be given formal instruction in both documentary theory and media practice. This part of the module will examine the ways in which theoretical viewpoints influence the work of practitioners. It will also give students instruction in some basic media production techniques. In addition, the workshop sessions held during the first part of the course will allow students to undertake pre-production work on their final projects, in consultation with the tutors.
During the second half of the semester, the emphasis of the module will shift, and the timetabled sessions will be used to provide advice and guidance to students on the developments of their documentary film projects.
Submitted work is of an outstanding quality and excellent in one or more of the following ways:
Has originality of exposition with the student's own thinking being readily apparent. Provides clear evidence of extensive and relevant independent study. Arguments are laid down with clarity and provide the reader with successive stages of consideration to reach conclusions.
Submitted work is adequate and shows an acceptable level of competence as follows:
- Generally accurate but with omissions and errors.
- Assertions are made without clear supporting evidence or reasoning.
- Has structure but is lacking in clarity and therefore relies on the reader to make links and assumptions.
- Draws on a relatively narrow range of material.
Submitted work is competent throughout and occasionally distinguished by superior style, approach and choice of supporting materials. It demonstrates:
- Good structure and logically developed arguments.
- At least in parts draws on material that has been sourced and assessed as a result of independent study, or in a way unique to the student.
- Assertions are, in the main, backed by evidence and sound reasoning.
- Accuracy and presentation in an appropriate academic style.
Very Good (60%+)
Submitted work is competent throughout and distinguished by superior style, approach and choice of supporting materials. It demonstrates:
- Very good structure and logically developed arguments.
- Draws on material that has been sourced and assessed as a result of independent study, or in a way unique to the student.
- Assertions are backed by evidence and sound reasoning.
- Accuracy and presentation in an appropriate academic style.
Critically interrogate the process of media production in relation to media production theory
Demonstrate an advanced ability to discuss and analyse the collaborative nature of documentary media production
Demonstrate advanced technical skill in one aspect of documentary media production
Demonstrate an advanced understanding of the processes by which documentaries are produced
Teaching and Learning Strategy
During the first half of the semester, lectures will focus on instruction, with the module tutors providing information about key aspects of documentary film production. During the second half of the semester, the lecture will become more interactive in nature, and allow students to discuss the development of their work with the tutors and with each other.
During the workshop the module tutors will work closely with students to examine creative work that they have produced or are in the process of producing, Tutors will provide feedback on any work that has been completed, and guidance on how to improve and develop any work in progress.
During the private study periods, students will spend time researching, preparing and writing their essays, as well as on the pre-production, production and post-production elements of their film practice.
- Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
- Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
- Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
- Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
- Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
- Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
- Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
- Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
- Safety-Consciousness - Having an awareness of your immediate environment, and confidence in adhering to health and safety regulations
- Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
- Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
- Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others
Subject specific skills
- Extract and synthesise key information from written and/or spoken sources in English / Welsh and/or the target language. (Benchmark statement 5.14)
- The ability to organise and present ideas within the framework of a structured and reasoned argument in written and/or oral assignments and class discussions. (Benchmark statement 5.14)
- Critical skills in the close reading, description, reasoning and analysis of primary and secondary sources in the target language and/or English or Welsh (incl. filmic, literary and other sources). (Benchmark statement 5.13, 5.14, 5.15)
- Competence in the planning and execution of essays, presentations and other written and project work; bibliographic skills, including the accurate citation of sources and consistent use of conventions and appropriate style in the presentation of scholarly work. (Benchmark statement 5.10, 5.14, 5.15)
- The ability to gather information, analyse, interpret and discuss different viewpoints and to place these in a wider socio-cultural and/or geo-historical and political and/or socio-linguistic context and to revise and re-evaluate judgements in light of those of the course leader, certain individuals or groups studied and/or fellow students. (Benchmark statement 5.13, 5.15 and 5.16)
- The ability to write and think under pressure and meet deadlines. (Benchmark statement 5.15)
- The ability to work creatively and flexibly both independently and/or as part of a team. (Benchmark statement 5.15).
- The ability to grasp and discuss how films reflect objective or subjective positions in their treatment of their subject matter. (Benchmark statement 5.7 and 5.10)
- The ability to comprehend, critically engage with and apply relevant theoretical concepts to materials being studied. (Benchmark statement 5.10)
- The ability to engage in analytical, evaluative and original thinking. (Benchmark statement 5.14)
- The ability to organise and present ideas and arguments in presentations, classroom discussions and debates. (Benchmark statement 5.14, 5.16)
- The ability to develop and manage an independent research project in English/Welsh. (Benchmark statement 5.10, 5.15, 5.16)
- Sensitivity to and critical evaluation of key cinematic techniques and the use of cinematic imagery and language. (Benchmark statement 5.10)
Resource implications for students
Talis Reading listhttp://readinglists.bangor.ac.uk/modules/uxs-3157.html
Reading list already exists in Talis - Documentary Filmmaking