June 5, 2017

Get Summer Schooled with Free Online Film Courses from Top Universities

From pilot-writing to 50 years of Hitchcock, educate yourself for free this summer.

One of No Film School’s core beliefs is that you don’t necessarily have to go to an expensive college in order to be a filmmaker. But that doesn’t mean that you don’t have to study, work, and learn the craft. You can do that with hands-on practice and, of course, by taking classes. Fortunately, there are tons of places online to learn various aspects of the trade and the theory behind it.

A site called Class Central offers a searchable database of video-based Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) on just about anything. These classes are designed by top universities, including Stanford and Princeton; big tech companies who would benefit from more people knowing how to code, for example; and even by platforms like Turner Classic Movies, which is offering a Hitchcock class in conjunction with Ball State University.

The basic offerings are free, and you can participate on your own schedule.

Some of the courses offer college credit or certification for a fee, but the best part of this opportunity is that the basic offerings are free, and you can participate on your own schedule.

Below are are some of the film-related classes available this summer.

Script Writing: Write a Pilot Episode for a TV or Web Series

Offered by: Michigan State University
Start date: June 5
Description: In this project-centered course, you will design a series bible and write a complete pilot episode for your own unique television or web series, be it drama or comedy or something in between. You’ll learn to break down the creative process into components, and you’ll discover a structured process that allows you to produce a polished and pitch-ready script in just a few weeks.
Sign up here.

Explore Animation

Offered by: National Film and Television School  
Start date: June 12
Description: Over four weeks, a team of award-winning animators will take you through their approach to telling stories and demystify their own animation technique. Different forms of animation will be explored, including stop-motion, cel animation, large-scale animation in the real world, and CGI or 3D computer animation.
Sign up here.

Discuss Hitchcock classics like 'The Birds' in Ball State's MOOC
Discuss Hitchcock classics like 'The Birds' in Ball State's MOOC

The Business of Film

Offered by: The Open University  
Start date: June 12
Description: Developed in conjunction with Pinewood Studios (where Star Wars: Episode VII – the Force Awakens and the 24th James Bond film Spectre were filmed), this course uses the value chain concept and important independent film case studies to provide a practical and in-depth exploration of the key business decisions. The goal is for participants to gain an understanding of the questions you should be asking and the relationships you need to build to ensure a smooth production.
Sign up here.

TCM Presents The Master of Suspense: 50 Years of Hitchcock

Offered by: Ball State University
Start date: June 26
Description: This course explores 40+ Alfred Hitchcock films, from his first film in the silent era, The Lodger (1927), to his final film five decades later, Family Plot (1977). Both the course and the associated films are designed to enrich your understanding of Hitchcock, Hollywood filmmaking, and the shifts in popular culture and film production contexts that Hitchcock used to his advantage throughout his illustrious career.
Sign up here.

The Art of Cinematic Storytelling: First Steps

Offered by: California College of the Arts
Start date: Summer 2017 TBA
Description: This course is an introduction to the methods of cinematic storytelling with an emphasis on visual grammar and techniques. Students will learn story structure, how to develop written or spoken ideas into a clear narrative arc, and how to edit and juxtapose images to create an emotionally engaging result.
Sign up here.

Find many more courses on filmmaking and just about everything else at Class Central, and let us know what you learn!      

Your Comment

4 Comments

FYI - the Hitchcock link takes you to a different course, "Understanding Memory: Explaining the Psychology of Memory through Movies."

June 5, 2017 at 6:00PM, Edited June 5, 6:00PM

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Jordan Paley
Producer / Director / Writer / AD
85

June 6, 2017 at 3:34PM

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Ben Billups
Filmmaker
74

June 7, 2017 at 6:13AM

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June 12, 2017 at 7:28AM

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