Program Overview

Filmmaking starts with your imagination and a passion for storytelling. The Advanced Filmmaking program gives you the practical skills and knowledge you need to join the film and television industry in a variety of positions. Learning from industry professionals, you will gain hands-on experience in all stages of production. You won’t just be learning about films, you’ll be making them at Fanshawe's state-of-the art film school.

Program Details

Program Code
Ontario College Graduate Certificate
37 weeks

Canadian Students

Start Dates

Full Time Offerings

2024 September
2023 September

International Students

Start Dates

Full Time Offerings

2024 September
2023 September

Your Learning Experience

Write, direct, shoot and edit multiple films in this exciting and challenging filmmaking program. Your prior technical, theoretical and creative knowledge will be built on as we introduce you to the wide range of possibilities available as a part of a filmmaking crew. 

Students are exposed to the breadth of crew positions spanning pre-production through post production. Upon graduation, you’ll be prepared to enter the film and television industry in a variety of jobs. 

Our industry-trained and connected faculty will guide you through the technical and artistic aspects of documentary and narrative filmmaking, as you produce short films in collaboration with classmates and students in other programs. One-on-one mentorships with faculty through each stage of production is a cornerstone of this program.

Gain a strong understanding of the Canadian film industry, learn from our esteemed guest lecturers and network with industry experts and gain professional experience through a semester-long internship. 

The Advanced Filmmaking program is an Ontario College Graduate Certificate program with three semesters, which builds upon the student’s previous diploma/degree and skills. Students have opportunities to work in cross-functional, collaborative teams to create both narrative and documentary films. 

All phases of digital filmmaking will be experienced, including pre-production, production, and post-production. Throughout the filmmaking process, students will collaborate with classmates as well as students in other college programs such as television, acting, visual effects & editing, audio post-production, fashion and others. 

Students learn on and work with state-of-the art equipment; gaining skills in camera operation with 4k Industry-standard equipment & production gear and editing in Avid media Composer. No matter your technical background, you will be brought up to speed early and making films right away.


Career Information

Graduates of Fanshawe’s Advanced Filmmaking program have the knowledge and skills to contribute to the creative, dynamic and exciting film and television industry as an independent filmmaker, media content creator, director, producer, or freelance crew member. 

Did you know Fanshawe consistently ranks high in graduation employment rates among large colleges in Ontario? 

Here are some examples of career opportunities for graduates of Fanshawe’s Advanced Filmmaking Program

Production (Office): 

Where all of the planning and organizing happens ahead of production and during. Responsible for logistics of the productions, distributing shooting schedules and scripts, organizing equipment and supplies as well as coordinating travel, accommodation and work permits for cast and crew. 

Some careers in this area are: Office Production Assistant, Production coordinator, Production manager. 

Production (Set):  

Film Crew – anything from camera assistant to set dresser, just look at the credits at the end of a film. In AFM we will help you find the area that interests you, and you will earn a certificate allowing you to apply for work on IATSE shoots; IATSE is the largest film crew union in the country. 

Some careers in this area are: Camera assistant, Grip, Electric, Set dresser, and Production Assistant.   


Depending on the size of the project, you could see yourself working as an editor or assistant editor. Picture editing, Colouring or creating Visual Effects; These positions can be freelance or full-time. 

Some careers in this area are: Assistant Editor, Picture Editor, Sound Editor, Colourist and VFX artist.


Frequently Asked Questions

How much of the program is hands-on learning?

AFM is very hands-on. It is a program geared for students who are looking for practical skills that will ensure entry into the film and television industry. Students have the opportunity to write, direct, shoot and edit many projects in a short period of time. You won’t just study how to make films. You will make films. In a professional way.


What are the advantages of the Advanced Filmmaking program at Fanshawe College?

There are many. At Fanshawe we are very well equipped with state of the art filmmaking tools, our program is very hands-on, and we offer great access to industry connected professors with a lot of one-on-one mentoring. As well, throughout the three-semester program we offer many college wide collaborations with the following programs: Theatre Arts, Audio Post Production, Visual Effects & Editing, and Broadcast Television. Filmmaking is an art, but it’s also a discipline. We expect a lot from our students, and we know they expect a lot of themselves.


How much technical knowledge should I have before entering the program?

Because AFM is a post-grad program, students enter the program at many different technical levels from many different related backgrounds. We help alleviate the disparity in skill sets by starting the program with a boot camp where students are introduced to / sharpen their skills with Avid Media Composer (the editing platform that we work in), state-of-the-arts video cameras (currently – Sony FS5), sound equipment, Mac Computers, Photoshop, etc. This bridging process is necessary so that our incoming students are technically proficient early in the semester.


Do I have to have own my own laptop or camera?

No is the quick answer to both. We have an abundance of cameras and editing stations on campus. If you manage your time well and book your equipment as needed, there will never be a shortage of equipment. However, it certainly would be an advantage to have a Mac laptop. But as mentioned above, we have plenty of resources on campus.


What types of jobs / careers will this program set me up for upon graduation?

The Advanced Filmmaking program does not force students to specialize in any one area of interest. Because of this, students are exposed to crew positions that span pre-production through post-production. This prepares our students for entrance in the film and television industry upon graduation. As well, our third-semester internship component is a great opportunity for students to showcase their knowledge and skills. Very hands on! AFM is a program geared for students who are looking for practical skills that will ensure entry into the film and television industry. All students have the opportunity to write, direct, shoot and edit many projects in a short period of time.




Advanced Filmmaking gave me the freedom to explore my options within the field. Fanshawe gave me the chance to use all the tools in my industry and learn to hone my skills towards what I really wanted to do.

Matt Scott
Graduate 2013
Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

1. Create narrative and documentary films, television productions, and other media (such as webcasts) that illustrate the application of aesthetic and theoretical principles of filmmaking;

2. Identify and develop stories and scripts for narrative and documentary films and other media, for both general and specific audiences;

3. Plan and apply appropriate pre-production techniques to prepare for the efficient and cost-effective production of narrative and documentary films and other media;

4. Produce and direct narrative and documentary films and other media to commercial, technical, legal and ethical standards by working independently or in a crew;

5. Operate digital cameras, audio, editing and lighting equipment during the creation of documentary and narrative films and other media.

6. Produce market-ready narrative and documentary films and other media by collaborating with post-production experts;

7. Plan media-marketing/distribution strategies for a variety of venues and formats;

8. Lead co-workers and others in all phases of film development, through the application of superior communication, interpersonal, organizational, and problem solving skills.


Program Coordinator:

Charlie Egleston


Admission Requirements

A College Diploma or College Advanced Diploma in:
    - Audio Post Production OR
    - Broadcasting - Television OR
    - Multi Media Design and Production OR
    - Interactive Media Design and Production OR
    - Interactive Media Design OR
    - Fine Art OR
    - Photography OR
    - Theatre Arts - Performance OR
    - Visual Effects and Editing for Contemporary Media
General Arts and Science (Film Studies Major) College Diploma
A Degree in Film Studies, Communication Arts, Fine Arts, Media or Design 
An equivalent qualification from another institution as judged by the College
A combination of relevant education and work experience in a related field as judged by the College to be equivalent to the above
International Admission Equivalencies
Admission equivalencies for Fanshawe depends on your country of study. Please enter your location to see the requirements for your country below.
English Language Requirements

English Language Requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to demonstrate proficiency in English by one of the following methods:

  • A Grade 12 College Stream or University Stream English credit from an Ontario Secondary School, or equivalent, depending on the program's Admission Requirements
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) test with a minimum score of 88 for the Internet-based test (iBT), with test results within the last two years
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic test with an overall score of 6.5 with no score less than 6.0 in any of the four bands, with test results within the last two years.  SDS Program Requirements.  
  • Canadian Academic English Language (CAEL) test with an overall score of 70 with no score less than 60 in any of the four bands, with test results within the last two years
  • Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE) with a minimum score of 59, with test results within the last two years
  • A Cambridge English Test (FCE/CAE/CPE) with an overall score on the Cambridge English Scale of 176 with no language skill less than 169, with test results within the last two years
  • An English Language Evaluation (ELE) at Fanshawe College with a minimum score of 75% in all sections of the test, with test results within the last two years
  • Fanshawe College ESL4/GAP5 students: Minimum grade of 80% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 9 or 75% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 10
Recommended Academic Preparation

Recommended Academic Preparation

  • Grade 11 The Individual and the Economy (M) OR
    Grade 12 Analysing Current Economic Issues (U) OR
    any Grade 11 or Grade 12 Politics (U) or (O)
  • Grade 11 Visual Arts (M) or (O) OR Grade 12 Visual Arts (M) OR Grade 12 Media Arts (M)
  • Grade 11 or Grade 12 Communications Technology (M)
  • Grade 12 Business and Technological Communication (O)
Applicant Selection Criteria

Applicant Selection Criteria

Where the number of eligible applicants exceeds the available spaces in the program, the Applicant Selection Criteria will be:
  1. Preference for Permanent Residents of Ontario
  2. Receipt of Application by February 1st (After this date, Fanshawe College will consider applicants on a first-come, first-served basis until the program is full)
  3. Achievement in the Admission Requirements


Level 1
Take all of the following Mandatory Courses:
FILM-6001Documentary Film History & Theory2
This course will introduce students to documentary history and critical methodology by looking at a range documentary films that have contested and expanded the documentary canon along with the conceptual debates and challenges to documentary filmmaking they have incited. The main focus will be on the Western canon; however, students will be given a short list of documentary films which they will be expected to view in the college library.
BUSI-6004The Business of Media2
This course introduces students to the business side of the film, TV and media industries. Topics, including; budgeting, contracts, copyright, funding, licensing, Canadian content, tax credits and union agreements are all covered during this class.
COMM-6047Writing for Media4
This course will introduce each student to the concept development process in the Film and Television industry. Students will learn how to use screenwriting software throughout the writing and production planning process. During the first part of this course students will complete a variety of exercises such as researching, brainstorming and story development. Each student will pitch a documentary film concept to the class. In the second half of the course, students will be introduced to writing for narrative films, focusing on screenplay formatting, character development and story structure. Students will learn how to use screenwriting software to complete several script-writing exercises as well as write a short format screenplay that may be produced in the winter semester.
FILM-6019The People & the Process2
This course will explore the process and challenges involved in managing creative productions. Tasks such casting, sourcing crews, hiring talent, scheduling, arranging permits, site surveys and many others will be taught and discussed. A series of exercises and projects will be completed to improve the student's confidence in these areas.
FILM-6016Cinematography 12
This course is designed to teach the student about the fundamentals of the craft of cinematography. Through lectures, hands-on class work and in the field experience, the student will learn how to operate professional High Definition cameras, peripheral camera equipment and accessories and location lighting equipment. Aesthetic and technical aspects of the craft will be learnt, with an emphasis on how all of this applies to the creation of documentary films.
FILM-6023Editing 12.5
This project-based course will provide an opportunity for the students to learn the art and craft of editing using Avid Media Composer software as it relates to documentary and reality-based productions. Creativity, organization, a comprehension of the technical aspects of digital video, editing terminology and theory are the foundations of this course. Students can choose to work towards becoming Avid Certified Users.
FILM-6020Production 15.5
This project-based course will provide an opportunity for the students to perform production tasks in studio and location environments. During the second half of this course the students will complete a documentary production and crew on a number of other studio and field related exercises.
FILM-6021Production Sound2
This course will introduce students to basic sound theory, and guide them towards developing listening skills and recording techniques to allow for the effective capture and use of sound in film and television productions. Students will also learn about the technical and creative aspects of integrating sound with picture during the post-production process. Professional sound recording techniques will be demonstrated and applied, providing students with the skills and knowledge to capture high quality sound in a wide variety of situations and environments. Students will practice production sound recording on digital recorders and cameras, and edit sound on a non-linear video editing workstation.
View all courses

Tuition Summary


Canadian Costs
Total Cost of Program
International Costs
Total Cost of Program

*Total program costs are approximate, subject to change and do not include the health and dental plan fee, bus pass fee or program general expenses.