Screen Production in the Faculty of Arts at the University of Auckland is an intensive film-school style experience for future writers, directors and producers of drama and documentary films. Offered at both undergraduate and postgraduate level, our programmes of study can help prepare you to become a key creative in the film and media industries. Taught by a staff of acclaimed and experienced practitioners, our courses are closely informed by trends in the industry, as well as seeped in critical discourse that may shape its future.
We can provide high standard equipment, facilities and support from practiced technical staff, and are the only New Zealand member of CILECT, the International Association of Film and Television Schools.
What will I study?
Screen Production is located within Media, Film and Television in the School of Social Sciences. At undergraduate level you can practise screenwriting, cinematography and the fundamentals of creating cinema narrative (drama and documentary) with staff who have strong links to the industry. You do not need to have prior screen production experience. At postgraduate level you will focus more closely on improving your undergraduate skills in directing, production management, writing and post-production. You will also complete your own personal production projects, varying in scope depending on the degree.
How will I learn?
You can create many standalone projects in documentary and fiction, both collaboratively and individually over the course of your study. Additionally, technical exercises in cinematography, editing, interviewing and directing performers all help develop the fundamental and advanced skills required to create your own future work as well as to work on larger productions in the media industry.
Our instructors are creative practitioners as well as academics, and we have maintained strong links with local and international creative industries. Our programme incorporates guest lecturers and opportunities for student internships and work placements.
In recognition of the excellence of the Screen Production programme, it has recently been admitted to CILECT (Centre International de Liaison des Ecoles de Cinéma et de Télévision), the association of the world’s major film and television schools. We are the only New Zealand member of this international organisation. This membership also fosters staff and student exchanges across various film schools around the globe.
What are my study options?
With a BA in Screen Production now available, you can progress your study from undergraduate all the way through to postgraduate level.
Bachelor of Arts in Screen Production
To give undergraduate students the opportunity to develop their screen storytelling craft, a major and minor in Screen Production is available. You begin to study towards the major or minor in your second BA year. The Screen Production major/minor helps enrolled students to learn foundation filmmaking skills in a University environment. Students can practise screenwriting, cinematography and the fundamentals of creating cinema narrative (drama and documentary) with staff who have strong links to the industry. You do not need to have previous experience in Screen Production to undertake this programme.
Bachelor of Arts (Honours) or
Postgraduate Diploma in Arts in Screen Production
During this year, you will embark upon an intensive individual and group learning experience that spans across the principles of directing (shot composition, lighting, blocking, performance), writing (structure, characters, theme, genre, dialogue), production
management (scheduling, proposal writing, contracts) and post-production (editing, sound and media storage). The year ends with a
production project in which, depending on your area of specialisation, you will complete your own 10-minute short film or documentary, or write/develop a feature screenplay.
Master of Arts in Screen Production
During the MA, you will focus on one major project in screenwriting, producing or directing (drama or documentary) and work closely with a supervisor to realise your vision. Many of our MA students have gone on to have their work screened at local and international film festivals or optioned by production companies. The masters is available as both a one-year or two-year programme.
Where can it take me?
Our award-winning alumni show that a qualification in Screen Production from the Faculty of Arts can take you places in the media industry. Past student works have screened at major international festivals including Venice, London and New York as well as making appearances in the New Zealand International Film Festival.
Our graduates have gained positions at funding bodies such as the New Zealand Film Commission; organisations such as Script to Screen, the Screen Editors and Directors’ Guild and NZ Film; broadcasters such as TVNZ, Māori Television, TV3, SKY TV and Prime; production companies such as South Pacific Pictures, Eyeworks, Occasional Productions, Monsoon Pictures and Razor Films; advertising agencies such as Robber’s Dog, Fish, Saatchi and Saatchi and Thick as Thieves; and tertiary providers such as Auckland University of Technology, Unitec,,South Seas and Southland Polytech, as well as freelancing in the broader film and media industry.
Screen Production can give you a wide range of useful skills such as time management, project management, written and oral communication skills, teamwork and the ability to turn an idea into reality, alongside practical filmmaking skills. The Bachelor of Arts in Screen Production is unique in that it allows you to learn strong narrative and technical skills in Screen Production while also having the flexibility to study other BA subjects that inspire you.
To find out more
To find out more and learn how to apply, see the undergraduate study or postgraduate study pages at