The Advantages To Earning A Film Degree
Creating a film generally requires hundreds of individuals with creative and technical talent and provides numerous employment opportunities for qualified professionals. Many professionals in television and film-making production find completing formal degree programs a tremendous basis for future career success. There are no industry standards regarding obtaining a degree as experience, creativity, talent, and professionalism are generally the most important issues pertaining to employability. Earning a film degree provides students with knowledge pertaining to the industry as well as hands on experience necessary to operate equipment, edit software, and be an important member of a film team. Film courses give students a broad understanding of all aspects of cinematography, from planning, financing, and directing a film to shooting, producing, publicizing, distributing, and post production tasks of a film. Students within a film degree program also gain a sound understanding of computers, business, and the history of the industry.
Many entry level film workers begin with small jobs like business, educational, industrial, or government films, documentaries, or music videos and advance to larger, more prominent productions. Many aspiring film professionals choose to expand their educational background by obtaining a degree while managing job or family responsibilities. Many students interested in a film degree find online degree programs one of the best paths to obtaining a degree, expanding knowledge, and propelling career goals. Many colleges and universities have developed innovative online programs in response to the growing demand of students managing obligations in addition to pursuing a degree. Most online degree programs are virtually the same as their traditional, brick and mortar equivalents. Online courses consist of a highly personalized educational experience and feature classes of 25 students who have 24 hour access to course materials and instruction. Online programs give students the added benefit of flexible course scheduling and one on one access with instructors and other students. Online degree programs are often one of the convenient, affordable, and quality educational experiences available.
What Students Learn Within A Film Degree Program
Students enrolled within a film degree program gain the skills and knowledge necessary to work as qualified professionals within the exciting, creative, and dynamic entertainment field. Film degree students gain a broad understanding of the history of film as well as the technical knowledge of equipment, computers, and other tools. An associate’s degree in film provides students with a versatile degree and sound educational basis for future career success.
Courses at an associate level include: video production, light and grip, production management and technology, 16mm production, video post production, script writing, digital FX for post production, motion graphics for the web, dvd authoring, audio engineering, video streaming for the web, documentary production, director’s craft, hands on camera and lighting, screenwriting, student producing, editing, acting for directors, art history, efficient shooting, digital video projects, casting, cinematography, 35 mm film making, synchronous sound editing, contemporary masters, advanced editing, critical film studies, entertainment industry seminar, and feature length film production. Graduates from an associate’s degree program may advance to employment or complete a bachelor degree program.
Bachelor level courses include classes like: English composition, behavioral science, creative writing, introduction to digital photography, computer science and the Internet, college mathematics, lighting, history of motion picture arts, public speaking, sound for film, storytelling, digital cinematography, directing, documentary film making, advanced lighting, HD production, makeup for motion pictures, art history, cinematography, production design, film production, art direction, postproduction, advanced postproduction, interpersonal communications, and producing. Graduates from a bachelor degree program may qualify for various industry jobs or go on to master’s degree programs.
Courses at a master’s level include: directing, editing, music videos, screenwriting and script writing for film and television, acting, film, commercial production, voice over, producing, film production, television production, production design, cinematography, digital cinematography, lighting, cinematography lighting, special effects, underwater filming, film makeup, and film costume design. Graduates from a master’s degree program in film generally qualify as experts in the field but may pursue a doctoral degree.
Doctorate degrees in film are rare though most offer courses in: film theory, film criticism, narrative studies, film history, American film, European film, non-Western film and television, television studies, media and society, film and television as a business enterprise, film and television production, new media, theory and method, historiography, contemporary film and television criticism, practice of teaching film and television, research design, film authors, media industries and the culture of production, media audiences and the culture of consumption, film and other arts, visual analysis, topics in american film history, experimental film, classical film theory, contemporary film theory, documentary film, fictional film, animated film, american television history, new media, film and society, television and society, visual perception, computer applications for film study, electronic culture, videogame theory, film criticism, television criticism, and culture, media, and society. Graduates who complete a doctoral degree program often advance to employment as instructors within colleges, universities, and film schools.
Prospective Jobs For Graduates With Film Degrees
The entertainment industry provides numerous (and glamorous) employment opportunities for creative individuals interested in film. Most graduates with film degrees often work behind the scenes in small films, educational productions, advertisements, and less prominent productions. Film graduates often work as audio engineers, directors, editors, grips, managers, and camera operators within the entertainment industry. Though many film graduates aspire to gain employment producing highly prominent Hollywood films, many find employment within other fields that are just as rewarding.
A film degree is versatile, particularly when students specialize their education with additional courses in related fields like animation, visual effects, video game development, film criticism, fiance, computer information technology, or journalism. Many graduates work as camera operators, arts administrators, cinema managers, editorial assistants, film producers, animators, film or video editors, video producers, information assistants, journalists, picture researchers, presenters on television or radio, television researchers, or even instructors within university settings. Graduates also gain employment within alternative career fields such as a film degree gives students a well rounded education necessary for a multitude of professions.
Students may, with additional education, work within fields like marketing, promotions, advertising, business administration, multimedia art, and even library science. Despite formal training offered through film degree programs, factors like: geographic location, professionalism, experience, talent, and creativity are key components to gaining a job within the entertainment/film industry. The best job prospects for entry level film degree graduates are often within small or independent film making businesses located within major cities, specifically New York and Los Angeles.
Salary Range For Graduates With Film Degrees
Earnings for graduates with film degrees vary tremendously. Salaries within the film and entertainment industry are dependent upon factors like: geographic location, education level, experience, organization of employment, duration of employment, and union affiliation. The U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics reports filmmakers and directors earn a median salary of $54,000 annually. Television, motion picture, and video camera operators generally earn median salaries ranging from $29,020 to $59,970 annually. Radio and television broadcasters generally earn $36,250 annually. Film and video editors have earnings ranging from $33,060 to $77,700 annually. Multimedia artists generally earn $58,250 annually. Many professionals within the industry have earnings which fluctuate and are based upon each film production.
Career Outlook And Advancement Opportunities For Film Degree Graduates
Careers within the film and entertainment industry are exciting, rapidly changing, and highly competitive. The U.S. Bureau of Labor And Statistics (BLS) predicts growth withing the video and motion picture industry to increase by 14 percent through the year 2018. The BLS expects an increase in demand for professionals qualified to work as computer specialists, multimedia artists, animators, programmers, digital film makers, film and video editors, broadcast and sound engineering technicians, and computer generated image technicians within the film and entertainment industry. High paying, prestigious jobs as writers, actors, producers, and directors within the entertainment industry are often difficult to attain as the number of applicants greatly outnumbers the available jobs.
As employment within the film and entertainment industry is highly erratic, job openings are expected to increase as many workers leave the industry in search of more secure employment. Many graduates, upon gaining entry level employment within the industry, earning experience, and establishing their reputation advance to more demanding assignments with greater responsibilities. Many also attract positions within larger film or television companies. Some graduates advance to freelance work within their own companies or become instructors within film schools and universities. Graduates who distinguish their work with creativity and style, adapt to constantly changing industry trends, and continually refine their skills often build a rewarding and lucrative career within the film and entertainment industry.