Written by Ram Anand
MA Directing Film and Television
Hi everyone, my name is Ram and I am an MA Directing Film and Television student from Malaysia. Today I’m going to write about my first term as a postgraduate student and offer some insights on how international students such as myself can make the most of our first term.
My first term doubts
I enrolled on the MA Directing Film and Television course towards the end of last summer, I had not been involved in films for a good seven or eight years. Although I did my degree in mass communications with a major in film and television, I had spent close to a decade working as a journalist and did not practice film making during that time.
Naturally, when I arrived at BU, I had doubts that I would be able to continue where I had left off 10 years earlier.
However, my first term at BU has been a roller coaster ride that surprised me in a good way. A masters course is generally only a year and this will definitely pass in the blink of an eye. It is always important to start immediately and get into the course in the first term itself so the rest of the year will sail smoothly.
Learning to film
Within a couple of months of arriving, I was making my first short film, and there is nothing better than learning via a practical execution as opposed to studying theories.
Something as complex as filmmaking can never be studied with just theories and going out there and making a film, confidently aided by the great equipment the university offers was the greatest learning experience for me.
With course leaders who have hands-on industry experience themselves, I got a hang of the workings of a film set quickly, and understood the roles of different disciplines very swiftly.
In fact I have learnt more in the first few months at BU than I did in the entire four years of my undergraduate course.
Tips for future students
For future international students, it is worth keeping in mind that the teaching environment in the United Kingdom is drastically different compared to some other parts of the world, especially Asia.
Your experience is what you make it. The resources and the course structures are normally made available very early on, do go through them and understand what you are expected to do for the whole year, and not just for one semester.
This will allow you to have a clear objective about what you need to do now and what will be your next step.