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Digital Film Production with a Foundation Year - BSc (Hons)

Currently viewing course to start in 2025/26 Entry. Switch to 2024/25 Entry

Are you interested in a career making films and videos? This Digital Film Production with a Foundation Year ensures you will develop a range of academic and technical skills relevant to technology in film. You’ll explore filmmaking fundamentals such narrative, composition and film theory to camera testing, designing digital production workflows and post-production....

  • Level Foundation
  • Study mode Full Time
  • Location City Centre
  • School Birmingham School of Media
  • Faculty Faculty of Arts, Design and Media

This course is:

Open to International Students

Overview

Are you interested in a career making films and videos? This Digital Film Production with a Foundation Year ensures you will develop a range of academic and technical skills relevant to technology in film. You’ll explore filmmaking fundamentals such narrative, composition and film theory to camera testing, designing digital production workflows and post-production. On this course, you’ll develop a broad range of technical and creative skills with the support of our cutting-edge facilities and software, including our four professional TV studios in The Parkside Building.

About the Foundation Year

The Foundation Year course option enables you to study for our BSc (Hons) degree over an extended full-time duration of four years by including a Foundation Certificate (year one of four). The Foundation Certificate provides a broad study programme that underpins the follow-on degree. To progress to the next year of your degree, it is necessary to achieve a pass in all of the modules of the Foundation Certificate.

This course is open to International students.

What's covered in this course?

This Digital Film Production degree with foundation year focuses on fundamental technical concepts, including the physics of sound and light being captured during production (and the tools and approaches used to do this), as well as the techniques used to digitally store and manipulate both images and audio in post-production.

The course aims to produce well rounded filmmakers with a mix of technical, creative and business skills, able to work with digital video in a variety of industries. To achieve this, as well as its focus on the process and practice of producing films, the course covers a range of important subjects, such as visual composition, narrative design, production design, the film business and cross-platform productions.

This course is taught in the heart of Birmingham across our City Centre Campus which boasts an active and accessible film-making community. You will be studying on the same campus as undergraduates studying a range of arts, including acting, music, photography, fashion and theatre, which means that there will be lots of opportunity to collaborate with other students to develop your skills and build a portfolio of work.

You’ll also have opportunities to engage with industry, allowing a number of flexible paths to gaining work experience, including: basing selected modules around work experience, taking a placement year and working on commercial productions within the University.

Accredited By

This course is accredited by:

  • Athena Swan Bronze Award

The course definitely helped me with so many aspects of film and video production. From creating budgets for jobs, to understanding the technical functions of various cameras, right through to delivery formats for the projects. I certainly came out with a larger skill base and experience in filmmaking.
Josh Birch

Why Choose Us?

  • We’re ranked 1st in the UK for Film Production and Photography (Guardian League Table 2024).
  • Brand new facilities at STEAMhouse - This state-of-the-art building will become the new home for its School of Computing and Digital Technology from the start of the 2022 academic year. Based at our expanding City Centre Campus, this unique centre will give you access to outstanding facilities and teaching spaces, as well as opportunities to collaborate with people and businesses across multiple sectors and work on real industry-based projects.
  • Outstanding facilities  - Our  Centre for Digital Media Technology is equipped with over 1,200 sq m of facilities including two film/television studios, four multi-track recording studios, post-production suites, a BOLT JR+ high-speed camera robot, and several editing and grading stations.  
  • Knowledge of the fundamental aspects in film production  - Explore the technology and physics of film production, from working with light and sound, to understanding how different production and post-production tools affect images and sound you capture.      
  • Highly employable graduates - Move quickly into key production roles with the combination of technical knowledge and practical production experience from your course. Our graduates have gone on to work at the BBC.
  • Gain first-hand experience in industry - You will have the opportunity to network and make contacts with people in industry, gain work experience and to take a placement year between your second and final year.

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work with companies such as:

  • Ashfields
  • Christopher Smith
  • Creative Video

And in jobs such as:

  • Film Production and Technology
  • Film Maker
  • Production Assistant

Open Days

Join us for an on-campus Open Day where you'll be able to learn about this course in detail, chat to students, explore our campus and tour accommodation. In the week before the event, we’ll post you an event programme to plan your day and find your way.

Next Open Day: 29 June 2024

Book Now

Entry Requirements

These entry requirements apply for entry in 2025/26.

All required qualifications/grades must have been achieved and evidenced at the earliest opportunity after accepting an offer to help confirm admission and allow for on-time enrolment. This can also include other requirements, like a fee status form and relevant documents. Applicants can track their application and outstanding information requests through their BCU mySRS account.

Essential requirements

80 UCAS tariff points

If you have a qualification that is not listed, please contact us.

Fees & How to Apply

Please select your student status to view fees and apply
  • UK Student
  • International Student

UK students

Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.

Award: BSc (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2025

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees

International students

Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.

Award: BSc (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2025

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees

Access to computer equipment

You will require use of a laptop, and most students do prefer to have their own. However, you can borrow a laptop from the university or use one of our shared computer rooms.

Printing

You will receive £5 print credit in each year of your course, available after enrolment.

Field trips

All essential field trips and associated travel costs will be included in your course fees.

Access to Microsoft Office 365

Every student at the University can download a free copy of Microsoft Office 365 to use whilst at university and for 18 months after graduation.

Key Software

You will be able to download SPSS and Nvivo to your home computer to support with your studies and research.

Key subscriptions

Subscriptions to key journals and websites are available through our library.

Free Adobe Creative Cloud licence

Students studying on this course can request a free licence to install the entire suite of applications on up to two personal devices, including access to Photoshop, Premier Pro and After Effects.

Project materials (mandatory)

This course includes project work that requires you to develop and produce a portfolio or collection. You'll be expected to provide the materials for use in your individual major projects; costs will vary depending on the materials selected.

Specialist equipment (mandatory)

This course requires the purchase of specialist equipment, including a high-capacity portable hard drive, headphones, SD card reader and small torch. 

Excess printing (optional)

Once you have spent your £5 credit, additional printing on campus costs from 5p per sheet.

Books (optional)

Some modules may suggest that you purchase a key textbook. All module key texts will be in the University library, but in limited numbers. Many students choose to purchase a copy.

Placement expenses (optional)

If you choose to undertake a placement, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst living or working away from home.

Accommodation and living costs

The cost of accommodation and other living costs are not included within your course fees. More information on the cost of accommodation can be found in our accommodation pages.

Guidance for UK students

UK students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS

  1. Register with UCAS
  2. Login to UCAS and complete your details
  3. Select your course and write a personal statement
  4. Get a reference
  5. Pay your application fee and submit your application

You are not required to submit a portfolio for this course.

Course in Depth

Foundation year

In order to complete this course you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits):

Year One

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Year Two

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Professional Placement Year (optional)

In order to qualify for the award of Bachelor of Science with Honours Digital Film Production with Foundation Year and Professional Placement Year, a student must successfully complete all of the modules listed as well as the following Level 5 module:

Final year

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Download course specification

Download now

Attendance requirements

For more information on attendance requirements, course contact time and suggested self-study hours, download the course specification.

Student stories

Josh Birch

When Josh Birch enrolled on a BSc (Hons) Film Production Technology course, he wasn’t sure of where the career path would take him. A year on after graduating, he has worked around the world and done some incredible filming.

Find out more about Josh

Athena Swan Bronze Award
Athena Swan Bronze Award

We have successfully secured the Athena SWAN Departmental Bronze Award recognising a commitment to gender equality.

The Athena Swan Charter is a framework which is used across the globe to support and transform gender equality within higher education (HE) and research.

Employability

Enhancing employability skills

Engaging with industry and gaining work experience during your studies is essential if you are going to be taken seriously in the job market. Getting work experience in film production can be challenging, so we encourage you to be agile and help you engage with a board range of opportunities available.

The University is eager to recognise students who have made the effort to gain industry experience and stand out from the typical graduate, and thus it offers a range options for you to get extra awards and recognition for your work in industry.

You have the option undertake an assessed sandwich year between your second and third year, which will provide you with valuable work experience and give you the real-life skills you need.

The second-year Collaborative Practice and final-year Production Project modules have been designed so that you can use your work in industry as a basis for the module’s assessment.

The university has a Graduate+ programme, an extracurricular awards framework that is designed to augment the subject-based skills that you’ve developed throughout the programme with broader employability attributes, which will enhance your employability options upon graduating.

Placements

There are a range of opportunities for student to gain industry experience, examples of activities our student have done include:

  • Working as a runner on one of our commercial productions 
  • Working for crewing agencies
  • Working part-time for a production company
  • Doing a placement year between the second and third year of the course
  • Submitting work to crowdsourcing competitions and film festivals
  • Collaborating with other students and local film makers on productions
  • Setting up a YouTube channel
  • Working directly for clients
  • Organising and running events.

More about our placement opportunities

International

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

As an international student on this course you will benefit from studying alongside a diverse range of students, all with different backgrounds and experience. In addition to this the course is led by tutors with international experience. You will have the chance to draw upon the diverse cultures and wealth of experience from your fellow students, learning new skills and sharing your own knowledge.

As an international student you will benefit from studying in close proximity to the UK’s diverse and continuously changing creative industries, and you are encouraged to engage and regularly network with these industries. Through practice-based teaching you will develop an in-depth understanding of digital media technology practices within the UK and further afield.

You have the chance to earn while you learn, taking on various roles through the University’s in-house employment scheme. You will also be able to access personal and academic support services, as well as help and advice tailored specifically for you. Through an international orientation and welcome week you will be able to adjust to life within the UK, preparing you for your studies! 

Facilities & Staff

Our Facilities

The course is supported with cutting-edge facilities, including the University’s Parkside Media Centre, which is equipped with over 1,200 sq m of dedicated equipment, including three film/television studios, dedicated green screen studio, post-production facilities, BOLT JR+ high-speed camera robot, multi-track recording studios, and several editing and grading stations.

You have access to the industry standard software used on the course such as Adobe Creative Cloud, Final Cut Pro, AVID and Logic. Most of these tools are also available in our dedicated open access areas and our library which is open 24 hours a day. Laptops can also be hired out used in other spaces within the University.

Cameras, light and grip equipment can be hired for free from our hires and loans team. Equipment available includes: 4K cameras, high-end HD cinema style cameras with follow focus and matte boxes, a range of DSLR cameras, a range of different lights, soft boxes, flags, reflectors, a range of different tripods, stands, dollies, steady cams and jib arms.

Within the Centre there is an internationally recognised research team, DMT labs, specialising in mixed reality, intelligent animation, automated grading and compositing and human perception. This research team is involved in the delivery of this course, providing opportunities to join them as a post-graduate researcher on completion of the course.

Our staff

Dr Michael Bickerton

Course Leader

Dr Michael Bickerton is Course Leader on the BSc (Hons) Digital Film Production course. Michael has been producing and teaching film for over twenty-five years. He has international production experience and has taught on prestigious courses (such as the UK Film Council’s 'Introduction to Screenwriting').

More about Michael

Mathew Randall

Senior Lecturer

Dr Mathew Randall is a Senior Lecturer at Birmingham City University in the UK, where he lectures in visual effects and computer graphics. He is a member of the Graphics and Vision Research group, specializing in real-time analysis and manipulation of motion captured performances and applications of virtual production technology. He is a senior...

More about Mathew

Jay Patel

Senior Lecturer

Jay is a Lecturer in the School of Digital Media Technology. Jay has been involved with the delivery of ERDF projects. Since the successful completion of these projects he has moved into teaching. He currently delivers a variety of modules such as Audio Visual Technology, Moving Image Technology and Mathematics for Media.

More about Jay