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Documentary: A Beginner's LibGuide: Documentary Schooling

This is a LibGuide that will provide various information on all things concerning Documentary.

Academic View of Documentaries

Looking to get into documentary filmmaking? Listed below are universities and colleges that offer such programs! 

Colleges & Universities for Documentary Filmmaking

Center for Documentary Studies

Undergraduate Degree

  • CDS offers courses in Documentary Studies to undergraduate students. Courses are taught by faculty members, adjunct instructors, visiting artist, and professional documentarians.
  • Documentary Studies courses provide community-based experiences using the mediums of photography, film and video, audio, narrative writing, and new media.
  • Certificate in Documentary Studies is a program for undergraduate students involving community-based research and fieldwork. Students must explore a particular issue, community, family, or individual working in one or more documentary mediums. More information about the Certificate program can be found here.
  • For more information about the undergraduate program at the Center for Documentary Studies (CDS) at Duke University, or questions regarding registration, contact the CDS Undergraduate Education Director: Christopher Sims, csims@duke.edu or 919-660-3689.

Graduate Degree

  • The Master of Fine Arts in Experimental and Documentary Arts (MFA/EDA) program, brings together the documentary approach and experimental production in analog, digital, and computational media.
  • A two-year program requiring 15 courses (37 credits) over 4 semesters; 10 required courses in prescribed sequence in 15 electives.
  • More information about program information, application guidelines, and portfolio guidelines can be found here

The Documentary Center

Graduate Program

  • An intensive six-month, nine-credit graduate documentary filmmaking program leads to a Graduate Certificate in Documentary Filmmaking.
  • Classes range from lectures to seminar discussions on issues related to all phases of documentary filmmaking.
  • More information about the program, application process, internships, tuition, and financial aid can be found here.

Documentary Media Studies

Graduate Certificate

  • The Documentary Media Studies program is a full-time, daytime, intensive one-year curriculum. The curriculum requires the completion of six courses (5 required and 1 elective; a total of 18 credits) in documentary history and theory and video production and post-production.
  • In addition to the basic qualifications, the application also requires a portfolio consisting of two (2) creative samples and a documentary project proposal. More information about the admissions process can be found here

Documentary Filmmaking School

Graduate Degree

  • The New York Film Academy offers a two-year Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree program in Documentary at their Los Angeles Campus.
  • In addition to the basic qualifications, the application also requires a creative portfolio to be submitted. More information about the admissions process can be found here

Documentary Media

Graduate Degree

  • The Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Documentary media is a full-time, two-year/six-term program that strives to maintain a connection to documentary traditions while encouraging innovative approaches to the making of new documentary works. The program is based in Ryerson University's School of Image Arts.
  • In addition to the basic qualifications, the application also requires a project proposal and a visual portfolio submission. More information about the admissions process can be found here

Documentary Film and Video

Graduate Degree

  • The MFA degree’s philosophy of the program is predicated on a paradigm of independent media that values artistic expression, aesthetics, social awareness, and an articulated perspective. Students become conversant with the documentary tradition as well as with alternative media and new directions in documentary.
  • The department admits 8 students each year to the program.
  • Application materials also require a writing sample as well as a portfolio submission. More information about admissions can be found here.  

Graduate School of Journalism: Documentary

Graduate Degree

  • Documentary at UC Berkeley is grounded in the values of professional journalism-accuracy, eloquence, aggressive research and reporting, strong writing, ethics and analysis-combined with the fundamentals of filmmaking craft.
  • In addition to the basic qualifications, application materials also include a personal history statement and three (3) journalistic work samples. More information about the admissions process can be found here

Documentary Filmmaking

Graduate Degree

  • The two-year MFA in Documentary Filmmaking program is uniquely focused on feature-length documentary storytelling.
  • In addition to the basic qualifications, a Creative Portfolio List is required for the application. More information about the admissions process can be found here

Colleges & Universities for Filmmaking

Undergraduate Degree

Graduate Degree

 

Created December 2018 by Melissa, Ann, and Alex. Pratt Institute.