The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Undergraduate Program




The Certificate Program in Film Studies offers undergraduates a comprehensive course of study in the history, criticism, theory, aesthetics, and production of the moving image in the unique context of an interdepartmental and interdisciplinary program. Film Studies faculty and courses come from departments and colleges across the University, including Afro-American Studies, Anthropology, Art and Art History, Asian Languages and Literatures, Communication, Comparative Literature, French & Italian, Germanic Languages and Literatures, Music, Political Science, Spanish & Portuguese, Theater, the Commonwealth College, and the School of Management. 

Large empty lecture hall with a screen in front. A sunset is displayed.
Integrative Learning Center Classroom

The Interdepartmental Program in Film Studies is the home of the Massachusetts Multicultural Film Festival, an annual series that brings to the campus and Five College community important new international films and visiting filmmakers. Certificate students are encouraged to participate in the Festival’s one-credit colloquium, as well as the internship program. Students should also consider the annual Five College Student Film and Video Festival, which showcases the best work of undergraduates in the Five Colleges and offers valuable opportunities to Certificate students interested in production to screen their film and video projects and to participate in producing and organizing the Festival. 

The Michael S. Roif Award In Film Studies is a competitive annual cash prize awarded to a single student or divided between two students enrolled in the University’s Undergraduate Film Studies Certificate Program whose film, video, or moving image media work demonstrates exceptional creativity and accomplishment. The award is based upon an endowment, made by his family, in honor of Michael S. Roif, a University alumnus and film enthusiast. Previous winners have gone on to achieve further successes in filmmaking.

Admission Policy

Any student formally enrolled as an undergraduate at the University of Massachusetts Amherst may pursue a Certificate in Film Studies in conjunction with his or her departmental major. Upon graduation, students who have completed all certificate requirements will receive a Certificate in Film Studies that is noted on the transcript, in addition to their UMASS diploma. Students from the other Five Colleges and graduate students are not eligible to earn a Certificate but may enroll in courses. Currently there is not an admission policy for the online certificate program: admission in all classes is open and anyone can enroll. You do not have to be a matriculated UMass Amherst student to do this certificate. 

To Enroll

University undergraduates make an initial enrollment appointment with an advisor in the Film Studies office and are expected to update their files in the office every semester thereafter. 

Please Note: Students are strongly encouraged to enroll in the program in their freshman or sophomore year. A short advising appointment is recommended each semester to ensure a coherent plan of study.