Film StudiesCollege of Arts and Sciences

What you will learn

Film studies at Nebraska enables you to understand the main outlines of:

  • history, theory, and practice of films on an international scale
  • artistic development in at least one area of specialization within film studies, such as Asian, African, or feminist cinema
  • main contributions of cinematic culture to our society as a whole

When you major in film studies, your core courses will cover:

  • film history
  • film genre
  • film directors
  • film theory
  • criticism

You will also integrate your studies with:

  • communication studies
  • rhetoric
  • philosophy
  • literary criticism
  • ethnic literature
  • visual cultures of all types

Imagine yourself in courses like film directors, women in popular culture, writing for films, music in films, and many more!

Career Opportunities

Career opportunities in this area are nearly unlimited, and include:

  • archival work at major studios and museums
  • publicity work
  • teaching film studies
  • reviewing and/or writing for newspapers and magazines
  • screen writing

These jobs are available on the local level, as well as in major metropolitan centers such as New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago.

Internships and employment of recent Nebraska graduates includes:

  • Arts REACH Program Intern, Lied Center for Performing Arts
  • Production Assistant, 1865 Entertainment
  • Production Associate, Nebraska Educational Telecommunications
  • Project Archivist, Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) Grant
  • Temporary Editor, NETV

The NEBRASKA difference

You'll join one the most adventurous and cutting-edge film programs in the Big Ten.

  • digital projection facilities that are state of the art at the Ross Theater
  • an enormous collection of classic films
  • faculty that are responsible for more than 40 books and 100s of articles
  • undergraduate classes taught by full professors 

Our film studies program is up to the minute.

Two of the program’s professors, Dr. Wheeler Dixon and Dr. Gwendolyn Foster, co-wrote the textbook A SHORT HISTORY OF FILM which has been adopted nationwide as the go-to one stop source for film history, and has just been published in a second, revised edition.

Involvement and publication opportunities for YOU:

  • Film criticism slots in The Daily Nebraskan
  • Intern at The Mary Riepma Ross Film Theater, one of the nation’s finest film repertory houses
  • Conduct research at Love Library with one of the largest collections of film books and DVDs in the Midwest
  • Write research papers for possible later publication as part of course work
  • Work in the Mary Riepma Ross Film Archive

Alumni / Faculty

Dr. Wheeler Dixon and Dr. Gwendolyn Foster are the co-editors of a major textbook in film: A Short History of Film.

They also co-edit the Quarterly Review of Film and Video.


Film courses are usually taught in the state-of-the-art Mary Riepma Ross Media Arts Center, committed to screening a wide diversity of high quality film and video:

  • innovative American independent work including non-narrative, experimental films and video
  • classic foreign and American cinema illustrative of traditional and historical perspectives
  • documentaries which examine a wide variety of issues of concern
  • contemporary foreign cinema of substance