Film & Digital Art BA (Hons)

UCA Farnham - 2021

Length of study:

Three years full-time


UCA Farnham

Entry requirements:

112 UCAS tariff points

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Course entry options:

September 2021

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UCAS institution code:


UCAS code:


Course overview

Our Film & Digital Art course at UCA Farnham is an alternative to traditional film production courses that bridges the gap between fine art and film by exploring the creative possibilities of moving image, photography and digital practices.

If you want to push the limits of technology, experiment creatively and learn the skills you need to produce work that responds to social, political, and cultural developments, then this is the ideal course for you.

We’ll teach you digital production skills and encourage you to work with curiosity, take risks, explore concepts and reflect critically on others’ work, as well as your own.

You’ll graduate with broad transferable skills that prepare you for a future in the creative industries – our graduates stand out because of their wide range of skills and ability to think beyond the boundaries of film.

The course has produced distinguished alumni and award-winners including Will McGregor, the director of BBC series Poldark and His Dark Materials.

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Course details

  • Year 1

    You’ll be introduced to key concepts of historical and contemporary visual culture, developing skills in film language, sound recording, postproduction and research.

    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

    You’ll advance your practical skills and will develop your own individual style. You’ll investigate the relationship between fine art practice and theory and the rapid expansion of digital technology.

    Your imaginative productions might be projected installations, multiscreen work, documentary, photography, animation, dance, film or any other medium.

    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 hybridisation. 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 create 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

    You’ll showcase your skills and interests and establish your future goals by proposing your own major project to lead onto a career in the creative industries, possibly as an entrepreneur, start-up or fine artist.

    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 and additional course costs

    Tuition fees
    The course fees per year for 2021 entry are:

    • UK students - £9,250 
    • EU students - £9,250 (see fee discount information)
    • International students - £16,950 (standard fee)
    • International students - £16,270 (full early payment fee)

    Additional course costs
    In addition to the tuition fees please see the additional course costs for 2021 entry.

    Further information
    Find out more about our course fees and any financial support you may be entitled to:

    These fees are correct for the stated academic year only. Costs may increase each year during a student’s period of continued registration on course in line with inflation (subject to any maximum regulated tuition fee limit). Any adjustment for continuing students will be at or below the RPI-X forecast rate.



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.

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.


Apply now

UK applications

Apply for full-time study - starting September 2020:

Apply for part-time study - starting September 2020:

Apply for full-time study - starting February 2021:

Apply for full-time study - starting September 2021:

Apply for part-time study - starting September 2021:

International & EU applications

If you are applying for more than one course in the UK please apply via UCAS, to apply direct to UCA please use the links below:

Apply for full-time study - Year 1 - starting September 2021:

Apply for full-time study - Year 2 - starting September 2021:

Apply for full-time study - starting September 2020:

Apply for full-time study - starting February 2021:

Apply for full-time study - starting September 2021:

Apply for full-time study - starting September 2021:

Apply for this course and other courses in the UK - full-time study - starting September 2021:

Due to visa requirements, this course is not available to students that require a Tier 4 (General) visa

If you have another category of visa please contact us: to find out if you are eligible to study.

If you're interested in joining Year 3 of this course, please contact our Admissions Team on +44 (0) 1252 892 960 or

When to apply:

We are still accepting applications for 2021 entry - get your application in now.
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.

For more information visit 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 / BTEC National 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 and EU 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

Don't meet the international entry requirements or English language requirements?

You may be able to enter the course through the following entry courses:

Pre-sessional English courses in the UK or China

UCA International Foundation courses

The UCA International College

Your portfolio

For this course, you’ll be required to submit an online portfolio via your UCA Applicant Portal. We’ll need to see a portfolio of work that should contain a showreel 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 and upload your portfolio will be provided once you have applied. If you receive an offer, you’ll be invited to attend an Offer Holder Webinar where you can meet the course team and learn more about the course.

More portfolio advice

Get in touch