Frequently Asked Questions

What can I do with a Film degree?

Film Studies examines one of the most important, popular, and influential forms of media of the 20th and 21st Century. Students in Film Studies delve into the aesthetics, the history, the philosophy and the technology of film making through practical historical and theoretical courses. Film is considered from several viewpoints; including political, sociological, historical, and cultural ones – all enabling students to understand, analyze, discuss and explain film in its many forms.

Potential Work Environments:

Film Studies students learn a variety of employable skills related to many professional fields: writing, business, education, government, public relations, entertainment, cultural and heritage organizations and advertising.


Film Studies can prepare students for a career in a variety of cultural and educational sectors such as:

Film Journalism, Film and Video Distribution, Film Exhibition, Film Festival Marketing, Film Festival, Programming, Film Festival Education Manager, Museum Curating, Film and Video Distribution, Film Exhibition, Film Festival Marketing, Film Festival Programming, Film Festival Education Manager, Museum Curating and more.

Possible careers includeJournalist, Filmmaker, Advertising, Film Critic, Web Designer, Museum staff, Production Designer, Film Editor, Photographer, Camera Assistant, News Anchor, Marketing Manager, Film Production Staff, Educator, Archivist

Skills Acquired:

synthesizing information, influence and persuasion, critical examination, visual perception/articulation, cultural awareness, problem solving, production management, reporting and editing, technical literacy, media understanding, interpretation skills, communication skills, research Skills

What Can I Do With a Film Degree? 

Additional information about job trends, average wages and requirements, working abroad and other career options:


  1. Careers for Film Buffs & Other Hollywood Types, Jaq Greenspan
  2. Great Jobs for Film Majors, Sandra R. Gordon
  3. Great Jobs for Liberal Arts Majors, Blyth Camenson
  4. Film Studies Association of Canada,
  5. The Career Directory 2009,
  6. The Student Success Centre,

Why study Film at Western?

Students enrolled in the Film Studies Program will:

  • Engage critically with the art of cinema and visual culture;
  • Explore the global and historical conditions shaping cinema;
  • Develop hands-on knowledge of aesthetics and film production;
  • Acquire skills in critical thinking shaped by both disciplinary and interdisciplinary scholarship on film

Our undergraduate students have presented their research at international conferences, including the Notre Dame Undergraduate Film and Television Conference, the Society for Cinema and Media Studies Undergraduate Conference and the Film Studies Association of Canada Conference. They are also the recipients of prestigious prizes and awards, including the Frank Capra Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Film Criticism and the Microsoft Imagine Cup, Short Film Competition.

Notable Alumni:

  • Nick Haffie-Emslie (BA '07, Film Studies and Philosophy) & Mark Campbell (BA '06, Film Studies and Economics), Co-Founders VMG Cinematic
  • Cameron Bailey (BA'87, English and Film Studies),  Co-Director of the Toronto International Film Festival
  • David Heath (BA'93, Film Studies), VP Sales, 20th Century Fox
  • Rob McCallum (BA'04 Film Studies) Film maker and owner Pyre Productions. Read more in Western News

What is the Western Undergraduate Film Society (WUFS)?

WUFS is an organization with the goal of cultivating a new wave of budding filmmakers from the academic community. WUFS organizes film production workshops, film festivals, events, and their own publication, the Reel News. WUFS focuses on such areas as producing high caliber films for submission to the Western Film Festival. WUFS welcomes students with a passion for film, however lacking in productions skills, to join the organization and network with a group of like minded peers. WUFS isn’t just about making films, it is also a group that organizes social events.

The annual $5.00 membership fee brings the student to the status of full membership which permits them entry into film production workshops, waives submission fees to WUFS festivals, allows them to contribute to the Reel’zine, and to also attend the annual end of the year film dinner party. Being a full member also gets you an invitation to join the Facebook page, where you can communicate with members.

> Like WUFS on Facebook 

> Follow WUFS on Twitter

What is the Western Undergraduate Film Festival?

The annual Western Undergraduate Film Festival happens in March each year and is open to all undergraduate students at Western University. The event features a panel of judges comprised of local experts in the field of film studies and production, and a celebratory film screening is held at Wolf Performance Hall, Central Library (downtown).

What is the Martin Walsh Film Library?

The list of esteemed Film Studies faculty at the University of Western Ontario includes a leading film theorist and one of the founders of academic Film Studies in Canada, Martin Walsh. After completing his doctorate at the Slade School of Fine Art in London, England, Martin Walsh accepted a position as a Lecturer in Film Studies in the Department of English at the University of Western Ontario. As a new faculty member at Western, Walsh was responsible for spearheading the renovation of the Film Studies screening room located in University College (temporary located in Arts & Humanities Building Room 1G19) and the development of the Film Research Centre. After outfitting a screening room with film projection, the Department of English began to acquire 16mm prints for classroom viewing. In 1976, Film Studies Professors Seth Feldman and Martin Walsh received a grant of $75,000 from the Academic Development Fund to establish a film and video research centre and purchase new prints for the English Department’s film library. In 1976, their collection included 100 titles. This funding enabled Western to develop “one of the largest film collections in Ontario.” The press releases announcing the grant in 1977 argued that film had claimed “a permanent place in the university.” This collection of prints was clearly shaped by Walsh’s own research interests. A strong supporter and researcher of political modernism, Walsh’s critical work culminated in the posthumous anthology The Brechtian Aspect of Radical Cinema in 1981. Following Prof. Walsh’s untimely death in 1977 in a tragic cycling accident, Arts & Humanities renamed the Film Resource Centre the Martin Walsh Film Library.

The Martin Walsh Film Library contains an eclectic array of films, including avant-garde classics, silent cinema reduction prints, European art house features, independent documentaries and educational films. Initially, the prints in the Martin Walsh Film Library were screened for classes on a regular basis. A number of prints were purchased from independent distributors such as Canyon Cinema, the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre, the Museum of Modern Art, New Yorker Films, and the National Film Board of Canada. One of the strengths of the Martin Walsh Library is its documentation of Canadian and American avant-garde film. The collection contains work by structural filmmakers Michael Snow (New York Eye and Ear Control (1964), One Second in Montreal (1969)), Paul Sharits (Axiomatic Granularity (1973)), Robert Nelson (The Awful Backlash (1967)), and Tony Conrad (The Flicker (1965)). Numerous avant-garde films were purchased from the artists themselves in the 1970s. Rounding out the experimental film collection are works by Bruce Baillie (Quick Billy (1970)), Canadian filmmaker David Rimmer (Watching for the Queen (1973), Canadian Pacific (1975)), and four of Stan Brakhage’s 8mm Song films, signed by the artist himself. The most important experimental film in the collection is arguably Jack Chambers’ epic feature-length film The Heart of London (1970). It is likely that the Film Studies Department possesses one of the few original 16mm release prints of the film. Acquired from the London Filmmakers Co-Op (an independent company based out of Chambers’ home for the distribution of his work) while the filmmaker was still alive, the print predates the posthumous success that the film has subsequently achieved.

The collection also includes well-preserved prints of early works such as Man Ray’s Le Retour à La Raison (1923), Emak-Bakia (1926), and L’Étoile de Mer (1928), James Sibley Watson and Melville Webber’s The Fall of the House of Usher (1928) and Lot in Sodom (1933), Joris Iven’s lyrical documentary Rain (1929) and works by American avant-garde pioneers Kenneth Anger’s Puce Moment (1949), Kustom Kar Kommandos (1965), Maya Deren’s A Study in Choreography for Camera (1945), Bruce Conner Report’s (1967), and Stan Brakhage’s The Wonder Ring (1955), and Flesh of the Morning (1956).

Although Technical Services and English stopped purchasing films on celluloid in the 1980s, the Martin Walsh Film Library continued to function as a repository for 16mm film. The Martin Walsh Film Library houses several collections that could be of interest to scholars of industrial and educational film. One notable collection includes films by regional educational filmmaker Lyle Bebensee, who donated his films to Western in 1998. The film library also houses numerous industrial and educational films acquired from Ryerson University’s former film library. Most of the prints are either educational or industrial shorts by distributors such as McGraw Hill, Coronet Instructional Films, and the National Film Board of Canada. Highlights of the Martin Walsh Film Library’s collection of educational and sponsored films include All My Babies: A Midwife’s Own Story (Dir. George C. Stoney, 1952) and Western: A Tradition of Futures(Director: Nancy Johnson and Mark McCurdy, Lockwood Films (March 1987).

This summary is based on the following sources: Bill Webster “Western allotted $75,000 to buy films” The London Free Press (February 26, 1977); “UWO film research centre receives grant” (Western News, July 15 1976), 7; Joshua Romphf, Film Studies 4495 – Academic Internship Final Report: “Martin Walsh Film Archive” (2011).