Film & Media Studies

The film & media studies curriculum is designed to provide a superior undergraduate education for students who plan to pursue advanced degrees in the scholarly study of film or in filmmaking, as well as for those who seek a professional career in film and other media. The department’s aim is to graduate students whose background in film, media, the arts, and humanities is exceptionally comprehensive, and whose creativity is informed by finely honed critical/analytical and technological skills. Undergraduate majors also have the unique opportunity to pursue an intensive concentration in narrative and documentary filmmaking through the program’s partnership with the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). Within the intimate environment of a small program led by dedicated faculty, students receive the education, individual attention, and mentoring to achieve excellence in the highly competitive academic and professional world of film and media.

Academic Details

Overview of the Undergraduate Curriculum

Undergraduate majors in film & media studies take a comprehensive series of courses in film history, production, aesthetics, and theory. Students also pursue an area of emphasis outside the program, ideally in an area that can be brought to bear on the study of film or media in significant ways. Such clusters could be imagined, for instance, as focusing on other media and art forms (for example, photography, writing, the visual arts, literature, theater); cross-disciplinary topics or sets of problems (for example, the urban environment, violence and pornography, censorship, or globalization); subfields within area studies (for example, women and gender, African-American studies, or Jewish studies); or traditional disciplines such as history, anthropology, philosophy, or political science. Undergraduate majors are required to complete an internship or independent study, and many opt to take a range of filmmaking courses in 16mm and digital video production. Students must also complete two semesters of a foreign language at the elements level or one semester at the intermediate level.

Student Stories


Andrew Townson ’14 produced a video on Johns Hopkins’ sustainability initiatives that won the “Best Contribution to Sustainability Concepts” in the White House’s Youth Sustainability Challenge.

Jacob Appet ’12 used his Woodrow Wilson Undergraduate Research Fellowship to produce the feature-length film, Westbaum in High School. The screenplay was inspired by his own high-school experience, and Johns Hopkins’ Homewood campus served as the backdrop. To read more, visit the Johns Hopkins University Gazette.

Clare Richardson ’12 attended the Sundance Film Festival every year she was a student at Johns Hopkins, and completed an independent study project on the films she viewed there. In 2012, the Film & Media Studies Program began to offer a formal annual course at the festival.


Film & media studies majors have held internships at every major studio (Sony, Fox, Warner Bros, etc.) and at numerous television networks (ABC, NBC, MTV, CNN, PBS, the CW, BBC and the Discovery channel), in addition to independent production companies such as Weinstein, Scott Rudin, IFC, and Sundance. Johns Hopkins students have also interned at major talent agencies such as William Morris, CAA, and ICM, as well as with the Cannes Film Festival, the Maryland Film Festival, the Festivalists (an event production company that specializes in film festivals), the NEH, DC Comics, and Ken Burns.

Study Abroad

The department’s preference is for students to apply to FAMU, the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, which is Europe’s most prestigious place to study film. Other students have studied in France, England, Italy, Buenos Aires, Australia, New Zealand, India, Ireland, and Japan.


Related Student Groups

CinemAddicts (Film & Media Studies’ student-run film blog)

Johns Hopkins Film Society

Thoroughfare Arts Magazine

Campus & Baltimore Resources

The Charles Theater

Maryland Film Festival

Video and Film Arts at MICA


Majors & Minors Programs