• Study mode: Full Time
  • Location: High Wycombe
  • Duration: 4 Years
  • Start Date: September 2020

Course Overview

The Foundation Year will allow you to develop your academic study skills and build confidence in your abilities, identifying your own strengths and development needs for progression onto an undergraduate degree.

Some of today’s biggest films are created at Pinewood Studios – Jurassic World, Paddington Bear, Star Wars, and more. With our support, it’s also where your success story in film production starts.

We’ve collaborated with industry specialists Creative Media Skills (CMS), based at Pinewood Studios, to create this unique course. It’s been designed by experts with industry needs in mind, so you’ll have the practical skills employers look for.

Taught by top film professionals from Bucks and CMS, you’ll explore all aspects of production, from casting actors and using all the kit, to managing budgets and measuring the success of films.

  • Study in CMS teaching facilities, based at the iconic Pinewood Studios – centre of the British film industry, in your final two years
  • Learn from Bucks academics and professionals who have written and produced award-winning films and TV shows
  • Get to grips with industry-standard equipment including cameras, lighting, sound and editing software
  • Explore different departments and how they fit into the bigger picture of film production.

More placements, more choices

Bucks is a Placements Plus university. So, whatever degree you do, you can be sure there’ll be plenty of industry-relevant opportunities on offer, to help you get into your chosen field.

We’ll also prepare you for work beforehand, with special skills for work training, further boosting your CV, and building skills employers will value. In recognition of the value we place on these skills we have incorporated this experience into your study time.

Placements Plus is all about helping you get some valuable experience under your belt while you’re a student. To increase your choices later, and help you get the graduate-level job you want.

Course Details


Our collaboration with CMS, based at Pinewood Studios, is unique. A hand-picked team of experienced professionals are eager to pass on their expertise to the next generation of budding film producers, and will share insider knowledge throughout the course.

The Bucks teaching team also boast their own impressive list of credits. Course leader, Charles Brescia, has worked in New York, LA and London directing and producing for film and TV. Carson Black who is also part of the team has created prime time shows for 25 years including series like Doctors and The Bill.

Beginning with the basics

We’ll start the course by exploring the key theories and skills you need to analyse and deconstruct films. You’ll look at Hollywood cinema, documentaries, independent and art cinema, and more, as well as the impact of streaming.

Working in film production is hands-on – and so is this course. We’ll run demos on how to use the kit. You’ll also experience what it’s like to take on various roles like producing, directing and crewing.

You’ll also learn how to write for the screen. But there’s more to it than putting together a script – you’ll carry out documentary research, explore storytelling and discover how to craft a proposal.

Most of your first year is based at Bucks New University’s High Wycombe Campus, where you can benefit from our impressive facilities.

We’ll hone your skills

In your second year, you’ll explore the ins and out of industry. We’ll cover different areas from makeup and costumes, to visual effects and stunts. At the same time, you’ll hone your practical script writing skills. We’ll run workshops and you’ll pitch your script to a highly experienced panel. They’ll analyse it for creativity and production viability.

At this point, you’ll really get to grips with pre-production. Experts from CMS will explain how budget is managed and show you how to use Movie Magic (this is the software used in industry to break down scripts for scheduling and budgeting, so it’s important you know how to use it).

Your second year is mainly delivered at Creative Media Skills, based at Pinewood Studios.

Applying your expertise

In your final year, you’ll explore casting of main actors and extras, assistant directing, production management, and more. We’ll help you understand how to use editing to create emotional impact and explore the impact of sound on storytelling.

CMS will bring in experts to explain what it takes for a film to be a financial success and how to generate profit. You’ll also look at different areas of marketing like creating press releases.

You’ll finish your degree by completing your own short film. It’ll be up to you to take on the role of writer, producer, director and editor. You’ll find your crew, shoot the film and edit it to industry standard. Because you’ll apply all skills you’ve learnt, it will be the centre piece of your portfolio.

Your final year will mainly be delivered at Creative Media Skills, based at Pinewood Studios.

What are the course entry requirements?

Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements for the 3-year undergraduate programme, or those who do not feel fully prepared for a Level 4 course, will be considered for the 4-year programme including a Foundation Year. If you wish to enquire further, please send your query along with any academic evidence or references to admissions@bucks.ac.uk

Course Modules

Module Map

This module map provides a list of the modules that make up your course. You can find more information about how your course is structured on our Academic Advice section.

The modules available on this course are as follows:

Foundation Year Modules

  • Preparing for Success: Knowledge and Creativity
  • Preparing for Success: Self Development and Responsibility
  • Inquiry Based Learning
  • Introduction to Moving Image Production

Year One Modules

  • Fiction Production
  • Writing for Film and Television: Documentary
  • Technical Skills: Camera and Editing
  • Writing for Film and Television: Writing Fiction
  • Screen Language
  • Documentary Production
  • Screen Form and Platform
  • Technical Skills: Lighting and Sound

Year Two Modules

  • Professional Preparation
  • Production Skills II: The Contextual Component
  • Script Analysis & Pitching
  • Pre-Production

Year Three Modules

  • Production Skills III: The Applied Component
  • Post Production
  • Releasing & Distribution
  • Independent Production Project


How much does it cost

Full Time Home and EU, Academic Year 2020-2021: £9,250 per year

Full Time International, Academic Year 2020-2021: £12,500 per year

Most courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees.

Fees quoted are for the next intake and are subject to change. Fee costs for subsequent years may rise in line with inflation, course delivery costs or subject to government regulations.

For information on financial assistance to support your learning, visit our Undergraduate Fees and Funding section.

Questions about fees?

Contact our Enquiries Team:
0330 123 2023

How do I apply?

For application details please visit bucks.ac.uk/applying-to-bucks


What are my career prospects

Increased industry demand means employers across sectors need graduates with practical skills and hands-on experience. After you leave Bucks, you might start a career in audio-visual production for film or tv, create films for the web, or study our MA in Film Production.

Based at Pinewood Studios during your degree, you’ll be surrounded by industry. When you leave, you’ll feel confident in working with the kit and feel prepared for your first role.

The Big Deal

At Bucks, we believe in putting our students first. That’s why our Students’ Union have developed our exclusive ‘Big Deal’ package. We’re the only university in the UK to offer free access to such a diverse and exciting range of activities – all to enrich the university experience.

We offer FREE events and entertainment, additional skills workshops, sports, recreational activities, societies and paid student rep schemes. All at one of the top 10 Students’ Unions in the UK.  It’s a big deal!

We are proud that our exciting and dynamic students’ union is ranked in the top three in the UK for representing student’s academic interests (NSS 2020). It’s a big deal!

Want to find out more? Visit our Students’ Union page or watch our video.