Film Studies Online

Online Certificates and Courses

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Undergraduate Certificate in Film Studies
Graduate Certificate in Videographic Criticism

University of Massachusetts Undergraduate Certificate in Film Studies

Do you want to obtain a Certificate in Film Studies? You just need 6 courses!

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 interdisciplinary program. Since the Film Studies Program began in 1991, our graduates have used the Certificate to compete successfully for admission to prestigious film schools and graduate programs; for positions in film and video production; for employment in film and video distribution and exhibition, digital and new media, and as editors, producers, actors and independent filmmakers. Film Studies now offers an comprehensive online version of our traditional certificate. Whether you want to complete the 18-credit certificate or take an individual courses, the online program offers you the opportunity to study with award-winning professors and professional filmmakers of national and international acclaim. You’ll find classes in general and specialized filmmaking, screenwriting, film theory, film criticism, and other subjects.

Admission and Enrollment

Admission to all classes is open, and anyone can enroll. You do not have to be a UMass Amherst student. There is no admission procedure. Students may register for courses up until the course begins, but we strongly suggest you enroll at least two weeks before the class starts because many classes fill up quickly. Matriculated UMass Amherst students should register through Spire. Non-UMass students should use this link instead. All courses are offered online through University+ Session at UMass Amherst. Classes in the online program are designed to be the online equivalent of undergraduate courses and serve diverse student needs. Students who complete the requirements listed below will earn a Certificate of Film Studies. UMass Amherst students are welcome to enroll in online classes. The online courses earned through the Certificate count fully toward the face-to-face UMass Films Studies Certificate and will satisfy the GenEds and Global Eds their in-the-classrom versions normally satisfy. Online courses are not, however, covered by regular UMass tuition. Limited financial aid applies.


Please also check our Frequently Asked Questions


Requirements for Online Certificate in Film Studies

Minimum course requirements to obtain the Certificate: 6 courses (of 3 credits or more), in the following 5 Categories (each course counts for only one category):

  1. Introduction Course (1 required)
  2. Film History/Theory (1 required)
  3. Genre/Director/National Cinema (1 required)
  4. Upper Level Course - 400 level or above (1 required)
  5. Elective/Production (2 required)

Current Course Offering

Online Certificate recent graduate Eric Greenberg: "I had no idea how just amazing and life-changing the Online Certificate was going to be"
Click here for the full interview with Eric

Cost (Summer 2024)

The fee is $525/credit for undergraduate courses and $656/credit for graduate courses, which makes it $1,575 for a 3-credit undergraduate course. There is an additional non-refundable registration fee of $85 per term. The registration fee is paid only once each term, regardless of how many courses a student enrolls in. Summer counts as one term. Please note that CPE/UWW limits the number of credits in Summer to a maximum of 15.

The total cost for the entire Certificate depends on which courses you take and how many terms you take to complete the courses. If you were to take the 6 courses (18 credits) over 2 terms (for instance Summer and Fall), you would have to pay a total of around $9,550.

Continuing and Professional Education course costs and class information

Financial Aid

The Certificate of Film Studies is not a degree-granting program. That means that if you are not otherwise enrolled in a matriculating degree program at a university or college, you cannot use federal financial aid, such as Pell Grants, toward individual Certificate of Film Studies classes. If you are currently enrolled at UMass Amherst, including the University Without Walls program, please contact the UMass Amherst Financial Aid Office to determine your eligibility. If you are a student at another university, please contact your financial aid officer there for information. If you are not currently a student, you can also explore personal loans. If you are a veteran, the GI Bill might pay for your online credits, but you will need to verify that before you enroll. Please get in touch with the UMass Veteran Services Offices to discuss eligibility.

University+ Bachelor's Degree Online with a focus in Film and Media Studies

Film and media pervade every aspect of our lives- our families and schools; our communities and politics; our workplaces and careers. More than ever, we need film and media professionals who are prepared to think critically and lead with integrity. At UMass UWW you can finish your bachelor's degree online with a focus in film and media studies and position yourself for advancement within this rapidly evolving field.


Whether you work in film and media, or have a passion for the subject, UMass UWW will provide you with the theoretical foundation and applied skills you need to enhance your career within a host of dynamic professions, including film and video production, distribution, exhibition, and editing, digital and new media, TV and radio, public relations, film and media criticism, arts journalism, arts management, and more. And best of all, our flexible degree completion program gives you the opportunity to bring in or earn up to 105 credits for your prior coursework, prior learning, and work and life experience. This accelerates your degree and saves you money. Award-winner instructors. Film and media studies courses you need.


Course topics include: filmmaking, digital narrative production, screenwriting, TV pilot script, visual storytelling, media programming and institutions, media literacy, film theory, film criticism, media representation of sex and race, media and education, public relations, news writing and reporting, social media, film and TV law, and more.

Learn more about the University+ Bachelor's Degree Online