Graduate Program Overview
The Cinema Department offers two graduate programs: A Master of Arts in Cinema Studies and a Master of Fine Arts in Cinema.
Master of Arts
Our MA program prizes the rich diversity of cinematic expression – whether critical examination of “mainstream” media production, or independent or foreign filmmaking, experimental works, or new media interventions including video installation – the faculty strives to broaden our students’ experience. Much of this takes place in the context of course work where the faculty brings their own diverse research, theoretical and cinematic interests to bear, but also in extra-curricular encounters – visiting filmmakers or scholars, community events (e.g., film festivals), largely profiting from the virtue of our city, San Francisco.
Master of Fine Arts
Our MFA program offers rigorous, professional training in cinema production in conjunction with an understanding of cinema history, theory and aesthetics. The faculty supports production practice in diverse forms – narrative, experimental, documentary, animation, or hybrid, and our graduate writer/directors become skilled in both traditional cinematic and emerging digital technologies. The MFA program also prepares filmmakers to teach cinema at the college or university level. Cinema’s creatively active faculty regularly share from their own production experiences, coordinate master classes with distinguished practicing professionals, arrange for visiting independent filmmakers to screen contemporary work, and facilitate student connection with local cinema and arts organizations.