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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Design

Undergraduate Course: Contemporary Cinema (DESI08010)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 2 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryWe are moved by the moving image: the cinematic medium shapes our individual and collective experiences and understanding of the world around us in powerful and profound ways. This course helps students to better appreciate and understand the contemporary cultural and socio-political importance of film. It achieves this aim through three central routes. Firstly, a series of nine case studies of important international films released in British cinemas over the past five years illustrates and instantiates a diverse range of key aesthetic, ideological and industrial contexts that twenty-first century filmmakers both contribute to and challenge through the work they produce. Secondly, the weekly case studies are drawn from a range of cinematic traditions, including animation, live-action fiction and documentary filmmaking. Thirdly, and despite their diversity, each of the weekly case studies is taught in such a way as to equip students with some of the foundational critical skills and forms of knowledge associated with the academic study of film. These include: an understanding of the relationship between authorial intent, audiovisual technique and audience experience; an ability to locate and critique individual films within appropriate comparative contexts, such as directorial oeuvre and traditions of film genre; and an informed understanding of the varied range of critical traditions and methodologies that scholars past and present have brought to the study of cinema as both social institution and art form. This course is taught exclusively by filmmakers and film critics from Edinburgh College of Art of Art, School of Design; each case study session is supported by film screenings and seminar tutorials. Ultimately, this course enhances students appreciation of film form and many important critical and creative debates and trends within twenty-first century film culture.
Course description Not entered
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2016/17, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  105
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 38, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 9, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 5, Formative Assessment Hours 5, Summative Assessment Hours 3, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 136 )
Additional Information (Learning and Teaching) 3000 written case study 100%. mid semester formative feedback via 10 mins viva
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) One 3000-word written case study critique of a contemporary film of a student's own choosing: 100%.
Mid-semester formative feedback via 10-minute student verbal presentations on their individual choice of film case study.
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate an informed understanding of the possible social, emotional and intellectual effects of selected elements of audiovisual technique
  2. Appreciate the complex interactions between audio visual technique and industrial and ideological context within contemporary film culture
  3. Articulate a formally, industrially and socially aware written case study critique of one contemporary film of your choosing
Reading List
Dix, A. Beginning Film Studies (2008). Manchester: Manchester University Press.
Donald, J. and M. Renov (eds.) (2008). The SAGE Handbook of Film Studies. London: SAGE.
McLane, B. A. (2012). A New History of Documentary Film. New York: Continuum.
Nelmes, J. (ed.) (2007), An Introduction to Film Studies, 4th edn. London: Routledge.
Saunders, D. (2010), Documentary. London: Routledge.
Selby, A. (2013). Animation. London: Laurence King.
Wells, P. (2007). Understanding Animation, 2nd edn. London: Routledge.
Additional Information
Course URL
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Special Arrangements After you have discussed taking one of our courses with your Personal Tutor/ School Student Support Office, please contact us to enquire if a place is available at:
KeywordsCinema; Film Studies; popular culture; animation; documentary
Course organiserDr Jonathan Murray
Course secretaryMiss Karolina Mazur
Tel: (0131 6)51 5712
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