Get to grips with the entire documentary film making process on this comprehensive course, which blends theory with practical experience.
MA Documentary Film leads on exploring the full range of the documentary genre and modes of production that have brought about recent innovation.
The digital revolution means new ways of directing, producing and showing documentary films in broadcast, independent and web 2.0 media. You will learn the entire process – taking on the roles of producer, director, camera operator, sound-recordist and editor.
What can you expect?
You can expect to be grounded in documentary direction, camerawork and editing - the key artistic and technical skills for a successful production team.
Each year students take their work from London College of Communication onto the competitive British and international documentary filmmaking circuit.
You will enhance your career prospects gaining valuable skills, vision and opportunities including guidance on pitching for funding and commissions.
In return, you’ll need to be committed and passionate about your study and practice and be ready with strong ideas. You will also need to be open to constructive and supportive criticism so that you’re able to push boundaries in your thinking, writing and reflection, alongside the making of your films.
The course culminates in you making a short documentary film (15-20 minutes). From identifying characters, stories and locations to shooting and editing with a particular visual style, you will be the complete author of your work.
Artistic, investigative, observational and activist film ideas are all welcome. These can be developed for the context that suits your work best – from broadcast to independent or gallery exhibition.
MA Documentary Film explores the traditions of international documentary film while offering modern documentary production facilities at London College of Communication.
Training includes shooting and directing on high-definition cameras and editing in Adobe Premiere. Practice is integrated with the theory so that filmmaking is critically and conceptually analysed within the historical and practical context of documentary film.
What are our graduates doing?
Holly Cocker (2010):
“I'm currently running my production company Markthree Media from Sheffield. We've recently made two episodes in the new series of CBBCs My Life; one on homelessness in London that was shot entirely with iPhones by kids and one on orphanages in Moldova, presented by a lad with Down's Syndrome.
We've also made a documentary about young with parents in prison for Radio One and are working on films for BBC Three and Channel 5”.
Chloe White (2011):
“I run the production company Whalebone Films. We are an award-winning production company based in London and Hastings.
We work primarily in non-fiction, short-film format and our repertoire includes documentaries, animated content, educational, promotional and fundraising films. We've just finished a short film for the Guardian on climate change and Christianity in the USA and we're working on a feature – 1001 Days”.
Uzma Hussein (2014):
“I've been working as an Assistant Producer, in casting, developing storylines and second camera assistant on a number of BBC and Channel Four documentaries. In 2015 I was nominated for the Limelight Film Awards, in the documentary category. In the same year I also worked with Sean McAllister, who won the Grand Jury prize at Sheffield International Documentary Festival.
My role involved story development, direction in sound design and some editing. Currently I'm working with Brian Hill on a documentary-musical themed around Asian immigration to the UK, to be broadcast in summer 2018 as part of the BBCs British Asian Season”.
Hanna Aqvilin (2016):
“I've been filming in New York and Japan as Assistant Producer on a documentary project I initiated with True Vision Productions, to be shown on BBC Two This World.
My graduation film Faye Presto, Queen of Close-up won best documentary at Fastnet Film Festival and has since been shown in 16 festivals, winning prizes in four of them.”
Ansiq Li (2016):
“I'm working for the International Department of China Intercontinental Communication Centre in Beijing. I am producing Modern China: How We Made It – a three episode documentary to be broadcast on Discovery in 2018.
I have two projects with Lion TV and BBC called China On Stage and Lines Through China. My graduation film LAOGA was shortlisted for the Fastnet Film Festival and showed at film festivals in Japan, Egypt and China”
Niels Ladefoged (2010):
“I was the Creative Producer of Free Speech Fear Free, directed by Tarquin Ramsay. It won the American INSIGHT Free Speech Award in Philadephia and it will be released in Germany and France and will appear on Amazon Prime and Netflix (in German-speaking countries).
I co-founded newsPeeks. As well as directing independent documentary films, I am a freelance video journalist and a camera operator”.
What does industry say about our course?
Donna Howard, Digital Learning Associates:
“We came to the LCC Documentary Filmmaking screenings and were really excited by the work we saw.
It was fantastic to see that each person was empowered to seek out the stories they wanted to tell – big or small – and it was clear that the students had developed confident, distinct approaches to telling them. We'd love to have voices like those of your filmmakers on board”.
Ria Gibson, Operations and Content Manager for BAMM Global:
“We continue to be impressed with the level of quality coming from MA Documentary and Photojournalism courses at LCC.
We have a long successful history of using graduates for ongoing freelance work, for both fieldwork and editing. They come with that special combination of both technical skills allied with intelligent thinking to help create human stories that have more insight”.
Mode of Study
MA Documentary Film is in Full Time mode which runs for 45 weeks over 15 months. You will be expected to commit 40 hours per week to study.