Learn to create, market and distribute feature-length documentaries in this 2-year program
Learn to create, market and distribute feature-length documentaries in this 2-year program

»M.F.A. in Documentary Filmmaking

Passion with a purpose—that’s the quality that drives documentary filmmakers.

If that defines you—a desire to illuminate some of the world’s most difficult problems, to probe the greatest thinkers and trends of our time, to make a difference in ways that matter—then the M.F.A. in Documentary Filmmaking can jumpstart your career.

In Dodge College, you will get hands-on production experience, learn about the history and aesthetics of the documentary form, study documentary genres, and learn how to develop compelling, original content through a rigorous, interdisciplinary research and development process.

What makes our program unique is a focus on the production of feature-length documentaries and on the marketing and distribution strategies that will get your work seen—because reaching people with your work is why documentaries matter.

You will see the world as you never have before as you explore the ethics and politics of representing real people on film. You will discover your own strengths and develop new ones as you learn to use the tools of producing, cinematography, editing and sound to tell your stories effectively.

If you have the passion, we will help you identify and develop the stories you want to tell—to observe, advocate, explore or express. Whatever your interests, working in documentary film can carry you into an exciting new world of meaning and purpose.

+-Degree Requirements

1. Complete 39 credits at the 500 or 600 level.

2. Successfully complete a thesis project

3. Pass an oral defense of the thesis project(s).

First Year

Fall Semester

Documentary Production I

Documentary Cinematography and Sound

Writing the Documentary

Documentary Traditions

Spring Semester

Documentary Production II

Documentary Editing

Doc. Research Methodology

Contemporary Issues in Feature Documentary 

Second Year

Fall Semester

Thesis Production

New Documentary Forms

Producing Reality Television

Spring Semester

Thesis Post-Production

Documentary Marketing and Distribution

Graphics and Animation for the Documentary

+-Learning Outcomes

  1. Students will demonstrate mastery of documentary directing and storytelling skills, including the ability to visually and aurally tell a coherent and engaging story with a clear argument about real-world subjects and/or events.

  2. Students will demonstrate mastery of documentary craft skills including shooting, editing, and sound recording, and the associated technology required for each.

  3. Students will demonstrate the ability to make informed decisions about representational and ethical matters regarding the subjects and/or events presented in their documentary work.

  4. Students will demonstrate the ability to fully and effectively research and develop their documentary projects prior to production.

+-Faculty

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