Trent Building in sunshine  June 2nd 2020 by Lisa Gilligan-Lee

Film and Television Studies and American Studies BA

University Park Campus, Nottingham, UK

Course overview

Combine your love of film and television with your fascination for one of the world's dominant cultural, economic and political powers.

You'll cover topics unique to each subject as well as how they combine to:

  • entertain
  • promote ideologies
  • help us communicate and connect

Indicative modules

Mandatory

Year 1

Producing Film and Television

Mandatory

Year 1

Consuming Film and Television

Mandatory

Year 1

Reading Film and Television

Mandatory

Year 1

Questioning Culture: An Introduction to Research

Mandatory

Year 1

From Landscapes to Mixtapes: Canadian Literature, Film and Culture

Optional

Year 1

Race, Power, Money and the Making of North America, 1607-1900

Optional

Year 1

American Freedom? Empire, Rights and Capitalism in Modern US History, 1900-Present

Optional

Year 1

American Literature and Culture 1: 1830-1940

Optional

Year 1

American Literature and Culture 2: Since 1940

Mandatory

Year 2

Researching Media and Culture

Mandatory

Year 2

North American Regions

Optional

Year 2

Understanding Cultural Industries

Optional

Year 2

Film and Television in Social and Cultural Context

Optional

Year 2

Media Identities: Who We Are and How We Feel

Optional

Year 2

The Sixties: Culture and Counterculture

Optional

Year 2

European Avant-Garde Film

Optional

Year 2

Digital Communication and Media

Optional

Year 2

Memory, Media and Visual Culture

Optional

Year 2

Los Angeles Art and Architecture 1945-1980

Optional

Year 2

Work placement

Optional

Year 2

The American Pop Century

Optional

Year 2

Contemporary North American Fiction

Optional

Year 2

African American History and Culture

Optional

Year 2

American Radicalism

Optional

Year 2

The US and the World in the American Century: US Foreign Policy 1898-2008

Optional

Year 2

American Violence: A History

Optional

Year 2

Immigration and Ethnicity in the United States

Optional

Year 2

Transnational Media

Optional

Year 2

Key Texts in American Social and Political Thought

Optional

Year 2

Business in American Culture

Optional

Year 2

Presidential Rhetoric - Genres and Media

Mandatory

Year 3

Dissertation in American and Canadian Studies

Mandatory

Year 3

Dissertation in Film and Television Studies

Optional

Year 3

Film and Television Genres

Optional

Year 3

Screen Encounters: Audiences and Engagement

Optional

Year 3

Video Production Project

Optional

Year 3

Global Cinema

Optional

Year 3

Working in the Cultural Industries

Optional

Year 3

Development and Production

Optional

Year 3

Photographing America

Optional

Year 3

Teaching Film and Media Studies for Undergraduate Ambassadors

Optional

Year 3

Gender, Sexuality and Media

Optional

Year 3

Public Cultures: Protest, Participation and Power

Optional

Year 3

Media and the Ecological Crisis: Challenges and Opportunities

Optional

Year 3

US Foreign Policy, 1989 - present

Optional

Year 3

Popular Music Cultures and Countercultures

Optional

Year 3

A History of the Civil Rights Movement

Optional

Year 3

North American Film Adaptations

Optional

Year 3

Varieties of Classic American Film, Television and Literature since 1950

Optional

Year 3

Recent Queer Writing

Optional

Year 3

American Madness: Mental Illness in History and Culture

Optional

Year 3

Sexuality in American History

Optional

Year 3

The Special Relationship, Spit and Slavery - Britain and the US 1776-1877

Optional

Year 3

Troubled Empire: The Projection of American Global Power from Pearl Harbor to Covid-19

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About modules

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer, but is not intended to be construed or relied on as a definitive list of what might be available in any given year. This content was last updated on Monday 17 June 2024.

You'll be part of large lectures, small seminars and individual tutorials – some will be in person and some will be online. You'll also work in groups on projects and presentations but also be responsible for doing a large amount of individual study.

We encourage you to bring both sides of your degree together. Over 90% of our students agree that they've had opportunities to bring information and ideas together from different topics - a sign of our success with this approach (National Students Survey 2022).

We're a theory-based course but that doesn't just mean reading books. You'll also be looking at newspaper and magazine articles; reviews; academic, trade and industry reports; press releases. And of course, there will be lots of watching of film and TV across all genres and styles.

“I did a module called ‘The Pop Century’, which was on 20th century music, in second year. I loved that because you’d have a playlist every week and reading to go with it. We’d listen to songs and you’d choose your favourite one and link it to the historical context."

Liberty Jones, BA American and Canadian Studies

Teaching support

Your lecturers will be available outside your scheduled contact time to help you study and develop. This can be in-person or online. They will all be members of our academic staff in Cultural Media and Visual Studies and American and Canadian Studies many of whom are internationally recognised in their fields.

You'll also have a personal tutor who will review your academic progress and help find solutions to any issues affecting your studies.

"As a personal tutor, I work with you on your academic progress, but I also have a pastoral role with regards to your well-being. I see how you get on across all your modules, which enables discussions about you as an individual."

Dr Gabriele Neher, Senior Tutor

Teaching methods

  • Field trips
  • Lectures
  • Practical classes
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Placements
  • Workshops

Your assessments will vary according to the topic studied. As well as the expected essays, exams and presentations you might also pitch a media franchise, create a video essay or film a vlogs.

Assessment methods

  • Dissertation
  • Essay
  • Portfolio (written/digital)
  • Presentation
  • Reflective review
  • Written exam
  • Commentary

The minimum scheduled contact time you will have is:

  • Year one – at least 12 hours per week
  • Year two – at least 10 hours per week
  • Year three – at least 8 hours per week

Weekly tutorial support and the accredited Nottingham Advantage Award provide further optional learning activities, on top of these class contact hours.

As well as your timetabled sessions you’ll carry out extensive independent study. This will include course reading and seminar preparation. A typical 20 credit module involves three to four hours of lectures, workshops and seminars per week.

Class sizes vary depending on topic and type. Typically:

  • lectures will have around 50 to 60 students
  • weekly seminars will have 15 to 20 students

As well as the extensive subject knowledge you'll get from a joint honours degree you will also get an unusually wide range of skills that employers are looking for:

  • ability to conduct and report on in-depth research
  • critical thinking and analysis
  • working independently and as part of collaborative teams
  • constructing and defending reasoned arguments
  • excellent written and oral communication skills

With these skills your career will be:

  • resilient - as the nature of work changes you can adapt
  • flexible - you can choose across different sectors as you develop and grow and opportunities arise
  • creative - come up with new ideas and responses to developing situations

Find out more about possible careers and opportunities for our Film and Television Studies and American Studies students.

Average starting salary and career progression

78.8% of undergraduates from the Faculty of Arts secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual starting salary for these graduates was £23,974.

HESA Graduate Outcomes (2017 to 2021 cohorts). The Graduate Outcomes % is calculated using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.

Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take.

Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.

Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers (Ranked in the top ten in The Graduate Market in 2013-2020, High Fliers Research).

University undergraduate student Cole Pearce studying in Nightingale Hall accommodation's library, University Park. November 5th 2021.

The thing I enjoyed the most was definitely the flexibility to pick your own modules. For example, I’d have an American philosophy module, a Canadian literature module, then a more technical film module. Throughout the day you’re dipping in and out of not just different time periods, but almost like different degrees! It had that variation I was looking for.

Elliot Haines

Film and Television Studies and American Studies BA

Course data

Open Day June 2022