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A close-up showing someone editing a video on a computer Edinburgh College of Art


Film and Television - BA (Hons)

BA (Hons)


4 years
Study abroad


Our programme ethos is about developing a combination of imagination and curiosity, underpinned by a professional skillset so that students are ready to enter the industry after graduation with a clear sense of their own filmmaking practice.

Our core courses cover lectures, seminars, film screenings, technical and practical workshops, masterclasses and production management support. In addition to course specific exercises and films, students build up their skills each year, working up from junior and assistant roles to acting Heads of Department on highly collaborative senior productions.

We encourage students to be inquisitive and questioning. We encourage students to experiment, to challenge convention. We encourage students to develop their own creative approaches to the film form. We do not just teach ‘how’ to push a button but ‘why’ to press it.

Our lecturers and visiting tutors work within the film and screen industries as writers, directors, producers, production managers, cinematographers, editors, sound recordists and designers and colour graders. Our lecturers also contribute to film research and journalism.

The Film and TV studio is a large flexible space used for technical workshops, as well as for small set builds and studio productions.

It is adjacent to the Film and TV equipment store, which provides a broad range of industry-standard digital cameras, lighting, and sound recording equipment, available for you to book out and use on course specific film projects, both in the studio and out on location.

There is also a range of editing suites equipped with both Avid editing and grading software.

You will be supported in the use of these resources and space by staff in the Technical Learning Services team.


Our programmes have strong industrial pathways to ensure the most successful and meaningful careers for graduates. You are encouraged to participate in national and international showcase events appropriate to your programme.

Why you should choose this programme


We believe in creative storytelling.


We support a wide range of screen-based work to reflect the range of current and developing opportunities outwith university including fiction, documentary, experimental and commercial projects.


We work very much as a community and students collaborate on film projects with other year groups from the beginning. We also encourage interdisciplinary collaboration with other departments at ECA.


All of our staff have worked within the industry and bring a wealth of expertise and practical experience to their teaching.


We are an industry-facing course with strong connections within the Scottish and UK audio-visual sectors.

Widening Participation

ECA works with the University of Edinburgh Widening Participation (WP) team.

Widening Participation for undergraduates at the University of Edinburgh

Find out about Access to Creative Education in Scotland (ACES), a Widening Participation programme for eligible S4 to S6 students at state secondary schools in the south-east of Scotland.

ACES website

How to apply & entry requirements

If you'd like to study on an undergraduate programme at Edinburgh College of Art, you must apply through UCAS, the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. You can find out how to do this on the University of Edinburgh Degree Finder, where you'll also be able to

  • see the structure of the programme and what you will study each year
  • see detailed entrance requirements for each programme on the Degree Finder
  • get information on what to expect after you apply
  • find out about fees
  • find out where to go for further advice and guidance.

If you have any questions about the application process, your qualifications or deadlines, our Undergraduate Admissions Office will be happy to help you.

Email the Undergraduate Admissions Office:

Application process

Portfolio guidance

As part of your application, you are required to submit a portfolio as evidence of your artistic ability and potential. You should begin to plan your portfolio as soon as you decide to apply.

Assessors are not necessarily expecting a showcase of final work, but rather an indication of work in progress showing how you approach an idea or subject and develop the work from initial thought, through experimentation and enquiry, to resolved work.


Portfolios are assessed by a team of academic staff who are particularly interested in how you research and develop ideas in a visual way and how you engage with your chosen discipline. This is broken down into four main areas of assessment, briefly summarised as follows:

  • Visual Research and Enquiry shows the level of your engagement in intelligent, structured visual enquiry and how well you communicate this.
  • Idea Development shows your ability to appropriately explore and develop ideas, and your level of skills in the use of materials or techniques.
  • Selection and Resolution shows how well you judge which ideas have the most appropriate potential and your ability to bring them to a level of completion appropriate to your intended outcome.
  • Contextual Awareness shows the extent of your knowledge of the subject you have applied for and how your work relates to it.

How the content of a portfolio provides evidence for the above categories will vary enormously depending on the person and the subject being applied to, and no two portfolios will be the same.

The portfolio is made up of written answers to three questions (below) and a short film. The film should consist of a dramatic, documentary or experimental work. The film should be no more than five minutes long and ideally be a complete work, or else a strong excerpt that shows your ability to express a story or concept through audio-visual material. If your film is not in English it should include English subtitles. All submitted portfolio clips must be uploaded via one digital video file (or URL link to it) and be readily accessible (e.g. are not password protected) and must not contain copyrighted material.

We are looking for a clear understanding of what it means to employ film/video as a mean of artistic expression and as such portfolios consisting of showreels, music videos, travel reports or storyboards are unlikely to meet our criteria.

  • What element of filmmaking do you feel most passionate about and why? (Maximum 250 words) 
  • What attributes do you feel you would bring to the course and what have you done so far that evidences this? (Maximum 250 words) 
  • Which scene or sequence in a film has made a real impression on you and why? We are not looking for a description of the scene or sequence, but how you have been inspired by this. (Maximum 250 words)
What happens next?

We will contact you with our decision by mid-May. If you are made an offer, you will be invited to attend an Offer Holder Day.

Offer Holder Days typically take place in April and are opportunities for successful applicants to learn more about their subject areas and life as a student at Edinburgh College of Art and the University of Edinburgh. Whether you visit us in person or attend a virtual Offer Holder Day, you will have the opportunity to meet with academic staff and current students from your programme, tour the studios and other facilities and attend general information sessions.

Portfolio advice video

Design portfolio guidance

Join Interior Design lecturer Gillian Treacy who will talk you through how to put together a competitive portfolio for our Design programmes, and what our academics look for when assessing your work.

Get in touch

College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences Undergraduate Admissions Office
+44 (0)131 650 3565

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