What Will I Study?

Courses Are Industry-Focused

Film student Katy Crain talking with director Nefertite Nguvu
Film student Katy Crain talking with director Nefertite Nguvu on set of the Mason Film Lab, Myself When I am Real.

You will learn to take a project from conception through creation, production, and post-production in a variety of film and video styles while acquiring the technical skills needed to share your creative vision with the world in a concrete way. What can I do with this major?

Essential Film Building-blocks

All Film at Mason majors study film and video production, film theory and criticism, emerging technologies in film, ethics, screenwriting, and business practices in the film industry.

Customize Your Study

Each student majoring in film chooses a concentration that allows them to dig deep into their area of interest and passion. Students may choose to focus on:

  • Directing
  • Producing
  • Cinematography
  • Editing
  • Screenwriting.



Courses include Video Editing and Sound Editing and Cinematography. They hone their skills in authoring classes such as Fiction Film DirectingDocumentary DirectingWeb Series, and Special Topics, among others. The two semesters of their capstone year are an idea development workshop for creative projects. Through a process of research, writing, critique, and revision, students will develop scripts and pre-production blueprints for their final projects. The capstone experience is directing a short film that they have developed over the course of their senior year, which is presented in a showcase at the end of the semester.


Courses include Video EditingFilm Marketing, and TV Writing. They learn producing in the concentration through courses such as Producing IFilm Lab, and Fiction Film Directing. In their capstone course, students will develop as creative and practical Producers to create good films with compelling stories with business and legal viability. They will use research to strengthen their communication skills in negotiating, team management, and to develop their visual language as a film artist. They will put these skills to use by producing senior films made in collaboration with the students in the directing concentration.

Production (Cinematography) / Post-Production (Editing)

Courses include Video Editing and Sound Editing and Cinematography. Courses in Advanced EditingAdvanced Cinematography, and Advanced Sound are also offered. The senior capstone course for students in the Production (Cinematography) and Post-Production (Editing) put the focus of cinematography, editing and sound design into practice. Students play a key role in film project(s), directed by peers, throughout the semester. Throughout the course, students research their area of professional interest, create a strategy for success in this area moving forward and after graduation, and make connections in the field using the reels they create demonstrating their body of work.


Courses include Creative WritingTV Writing, and Feature-Length Scriptwriting. Students have the opportunity to take writing electives in English and play writing electives in the School of Theater. The senior capstone is a culminating seminar devoted to analyzing and synthesizing knowledge and skills gained through undergraduate course work in the screenwriting concentration, resulting in substantial individualized writing projects, which they present at a staged reading at the end of the semester.

In addition, all students must complete a minor, double-major, or demonstrate intermediate-level proficiency in one foreign language. Film majors may pursue a minor in Film and Media Studies, offered through the Department of English, or one of many other minors offered at Mason. Film majors pursuing a FAMS minor may not apply production courses toward that minor.