Film Studies

Interdisciplinary Minor


“The knowledge and skills I learned through the Film Studies minor helped me gain acceptance into the Film Production Masters Program at the University of Southern California and gave me an advantage over many of my fellow students who had never learned to think or write critically about film. Now, working in casting in Los Angeles, I regularly draw on the critical thinking I developed at CofC to discuss casting and character choices.”
– Thomas Horton ’14

Lights! Camera! Action! Is there a more familiar phrase anywhere around the world? Whether you treat it as a powerful art form, or as the product of social and economic forces, film remains the most important medium of the 21st century, and a unique point of entry for studying the world around us.

At the College of Charleston, the film studies program is truly interdisciplinary. It has the potential to span and connect a broad spectrum of subject areas, from literature, to art history to the social sciences. In addition, students in this program are exposed to a variety of foreign cultures and historical eras.

Students also benefit from the unique perspective that only film can provide. Imagine viewing “Edward Scissorhands” as a means of understanding cinematic expressionism, or “Memento” as a means of understanding of cultural attitudes toward identity. Or maybe you’ll discuss the American westward expansion in the films of John Ford. If a hands-on approach is more your style, you can sign up for such special topics courses as Video Art Production and Digital Animation. You can even enter one of your films in the annual Student Film Festival.

In addition to an emphasis on the history, theory and criticism of film, students in this program are introduced to film’s creative process, including cinematography, mise-en-scène and the principles of editing. And, the knowledge derived from the study of film can carry you well beyond this field. At the College of Charleston, the film studies program emphasizes the synthesis of information, close textual analysis, critical thinking and writing skills as well as a strong familiarity with the language of emerging technologies and new media.

Every one of those areas can be an important asset in a broad range of pursuits, whether you choose to pursue a higher degree or enter the job market. A film studies minor can enhance your opportunities in a wide range of careers such as journalism, media consulting, arts administration and public relations. Recent graduates with a film studies minor have entered a variety of M.A., M.F.A. and Ph.D. programs. Others have translated their film studies experience into opportunities in the legal profession and business. Whatever your aspirations, film studies can be an excellent complement to the rest of your academic program. Curious? Check it out and see for yourself.

Contact Information

Colleen Glenn
program director