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The University of Southampton
FilmPart of Humanities

Who We Are

With an interdisciplinary approach and academics who are actively involved in research, Film Studies' programmes offer a broad range of perspectives on cinema.

Our staff are widely published and are leaders in the discipline
The Cinema Book by Pam Cook

Film Studies is a separate discipline within Humanities, and has a long history of being taught and researched at Southampton.  We have developed close intellectual and staffing links with other groups including English, History, Modern Languages, Music, Philosophy and the Centre for Transnational Studies, all of which have a very high reputation for teaching and research excellence.

Perhaps more than any other discipline, Film demands theoretical awareness, critical skills and historical knowledge drawn from a wide range of fields in order to study what is arguably the dominant cultural form, and one that now spans three centuries.  Film bears a cultural influence greater than art and entertainment alone, and is key to the way we see the world and ourselves within it, and indeed has become fundamental to the way we perceive history itself.


Our staff cover a wide range of different research interests and expertise. Their research activities include national and international collaborative projects, major conferences and world-renowned publications. Most of our staff are active researchers with a strong profile of critically acclaimed research publications. We see teaching and research as closely related, and aim to offer our students first-hand access to recent discoveries, new ideas, and current debates in film.


In addition to our wide-ranging portfolio of undergraduate courses, we offer two MA programmes and a range of MPhil/PhD pathways which span cinema from its beginnings to the present day, and intersect with fields as diverse as history, gender studies, television and cultural studies. Our Head of Teaching is Dr. Veronica Spencer, who in 2010 received the Vice Chancellor's Teaching Award which recognizes teaching which is inspirational, innovative or of an exceptionally high standard. We all aspire to emulate this high level of achievement and offer our students the best possible learning experience and the key transferrable skills they need as they embark upon their future careers.

Flexibility and Part-time study

We have designed our undergraduate and postgraduate courses to provide a strong core of traditional historical, theoretical and aesthetic study, while providing opportunities to take innovative options both within Film and in other disciplines across the University. Our BA (Hons.) degrees contain pathways that you may wish to follow whether your interests lie in with European cinema or Hollywood, while you may also take ‘Curriculum Innovation' modules designed to widen your profile, especially with regards to employment, as well as film-related modules in other disciplines. Our MA courses can be studied full- and part-time, while there are also different ways to undertake doctoral study, allowing you to manage your study alongside other commitments such as work and family.

Film Studies at the University of Southampton has worked in collaboration with Harbour Lights Picturehouse since 2000, running popular and successful courses for staff, students and members of the public. Find out more about film studies in conjunction with Harbour Lights Cinema

These courses form part of a programme of part-time courses across the humanities subjects. Find out more about Humanities Lifelong Learning.


Key facts

Over the past decade, film studies at Southampton has established a distinctive identity, consolidated by the leadership of Professor Pam Cook. Pam is author of The Cinema Book, one of the most influential texts in the discipline and voted best film book in a BFI readers' poll.

The Humanities Lifelong Learning programme offers a range of part-time courses
Learning for life
'Hitchcock's Vertigo'


Film Studies traces the development of film making, from its 19th century origins to the digital age - learn about our Undergraduate Degrees here.

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