Students prepping to shoot a scene in the film studio

BFA, Film Production: Courses

BFA, Film Production: Courses

Downloadable PDF of Course Sequence document
BFA Film Production Student Code of Conduct document
Film Production (BFA) – Suggested Program Sequencing
Year Courses Additional Requirements
2 courses from Social Science
2 courses from Language or Science
1 of: CMAF-2400, CMAF-2410, or CMAF-3410
3 additional courses*
2 of: FILM-3200, FILM-3300, FILM-3400, or FILM-3700
5 additional courses*
3 of: FILM-4110, FILM-4200, FILM-4300, FILM-4400, FILM-4600, or FILM-4910
5 additional courses*
*Additional courses must include the following: Two courses from any area of study, excluding Arts; Five courses from any area of study, including FILM; Six courses from any area of study, excluding FILM.
FILM 1001Film Studies I. An introduction to basic concepts in film theory and aesthetics. A study of the history of film with a focus on the dominant artistic and commercial forms, theoretical analyses, genre classifications, and evolving technologies.
FILM 1100: Film Production I. A study of the art and craft of film production through lectures and hands-on exercises. A survey of the stages of production, key artistic roles, and concepts of visualization and cinematic storytelling.
FILM 1110: Film Production II. A study of fundamental artistic and technical film production skills in all stages of production and post-production. Practical learning exercises build upon the artistic work created by students of Film Production I and students complete all phases of production of a short film project.
FILM 1900Film Business and Professional Practice I. A study and practice of behavioural skills such as active listening, conflict resolution, running effective meetings, addressing ethics, etc., relevant to the film industry. A team environment will be used as we study interpersonal dynamics as they relate to roles in film production.


FILM 2100: Film Production III. An intermediate study of the practical considerations and creative strategies employed in film production and post-production. Areas of focus include narrative techniques and production methods. Activities include conceiving and creating short films.
FILM 2200: Documentary Production I. An introduction to documentary storytelling techniques and production methods through the creation of a short documentary film. Focus is on competencies in all phases of documentary film production.
FILM 2300: Screenwriting I. An introduction to the craft of screenwriting with an emphasis on core concepts such as structure, character development, plot, theme, tone and dialogue. Writing exercises focus on the skills necessary to translate visual and story ideas into script format.
FILM 2400: Cinematography I. An introduction to theories and methods of cinematography that covers traditional and contemporary camera technology, techniques, and lighting.
FILM 2500: Sound I. An introduction to the artistic, theoretical, and technical aspects of film sound through all phases of the film sound process.
FILM 2600Film-Editing I. An introduction to the art, craft, and technology of film editing through a series of practical exercises that cover a variety of styles and genres.
CMAF 2400: Cinema History I (Pre-War). The course charts the early history of the cinema from its inception to World War II: film starts at the turn of the century, the silent film era, the introduction of sound, and the decline of the studio system. Films are examined as technical, industrial, commercial, artistic, and most importantly, as historical artifacts. Industry, audience, and the development of cinematic language are viewed within an international framework and their local cultural context.
CMAF 2410: Cinema History II (Post-War). The course examines films from the post-war period to the present: the heyday of the classical Hollywood narrative and challenges to its dominance from European neo-realism and the avant-garde film movement are considered. Films are viewed as influenced by and reflective of social upheaval of the sixties, as well as their consolidation within distinct but mutually influencing categories of mainstream and alternative cinema. An important consideration is how films can either paper over or expose social fractures along the lines of gender, race, sexuality, and nationalism.
CMAF 3410: Media Aesthetics. An intermediate study of principles and tools to understand the formal qualities of visual signification within the broader contours of visual culture. Students learn aesthetic and technical terms, rules, conventions, and social assumptions used to construct meaning-across media forms and platforms-through sound, still and moving images, texts, or graphics. The course offers a conceptual grounding for producers, consumers, and critics of media culture.
The Armouries original spiral staircase is now a hanging sculpture


FILM 3100: Film Production IV. An intermediate to advanced study of the creative approach and technical practice of film production drawing on scripts developed in Screenwriting I or Screenwriting II. Students engage in a hands-on, practiced-based integration of film theory, artistic, and technical knowledge.
FILM 3600: Film-Editing II. An intermediate study of the historical, aesthetic, and theoretical aspects of film editing and post-production. Topics may include film editing technique, narrative construction, and post-production skills.
FILM 3800: Producing. A project-based study of pre-production and planning processes for film production, within an examination of the roles and responsibilities of the production department. Topics covered may include budgeting, resource planning, logistics, and regulatory issues. 
FILM 3200: Documentary Production II. An intermediate study of key artistic, craft, and narrative concepts associated with documentary film. Through the production of a short film, students explore approaches to documentary authorship, professional practice, and ethics.
FILM 3300: Screenwriting II. An intermediate study of scriptwriting to develop and refine writing and visual storytelling skills. A workshop-based approach that includes peer review, pitch presentations, and analysis of texts.
FILM 3400: Cinematography II. An intermediate study of cinematography with a focus on technical knowledge in film lighting, camera operation, camera support, and grip techniques.
FILM 3700: Directing. A study of the art and craft of film directing. Hands-on activities will focus on screen language and the relationship between a director, creative collaborators, and actors or subjects.


FILM 4100: Film Production V. A project-based study that develops professional capacities in all phases of the production process and synthesizes theoretical and practical learning. Drawing on scripts developed in Screenwriting II or Screenwriting III, students will create films that showcase their advanced production skills.
FILM 4900: Film Business and Professional Practice II. A study of the scope and nature of the Canadian film industry, with a focus on professional, business, and interpersonal skills necessary for entry into the media industry workplace. Topics may include career pathway identification, self-marketing, professional communication, and the respectful workplace.
FILM 4110: Commercial and Industrial Film Production. A project-based study of industrial film genres such as advertisements, training, and industrial videos, corporate film, and social media assets. Topics may include client management, brand research, and professional communication.
FILM 4200: Documentary Production III. An advanced, project-based study of the art of craft of documentary storytelling, including notions of conventional and non-conventional documentary modes. Students complete all phases of production in the creation of a documentary short film.
FILM 4300: Screenwriting III. An advanced, workshop-based study of screenwriting with a focus on narrative craft, theory, and in-depth analysis of texts. Students further develop writing and storytelling skills and cultivate short film scripts toward a final pitch presentation.
FILM 4400: Cinematography III. An advanced, project-based study of the art and technology as well as the professional practice of cinematography with a focus on technical, conceptual, and aesthetic lighting skills for both studio and field locations.
FILM 4600: Film-Editing III. An advanced, project-based study of the art, technology, and professional practice of film post-production. Students complete the post-production of a film from Film Production IV, Film Production V, or Documentary III, using contemporary professional protocols and workflows.
FILM 4910: Film Marketing. This course introduces students to marketing fundamentals in all phases of film production related to the market realities of distributing a film for an audience. Topics may include audience taste, market viability and current trends, distribution strategy, emerging platforms and channels, pricing and promotion.
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Note: The university offers courses, in addition to those listed above, in film production, film studies, film theory, and film history. Please see the University Calendar ( for additional courses coded as FILM, CMAF, or other Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences. There are also disciplinary and interdisciplinary minors such as the existing minors in CMF, History, English, Political Science, etc.; or the future minors in Film Studies, Popular Culture, Indigenous Studies, or Race and Ethnicity Studies.
Updated: November 25, 2020
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