Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Digital Film Degree - Production

Bachelor of Arts in Digital Film with an Emphasis in Production

Offered By: College of Arts and Media

Best for Online Film

Grand Canyon University is ranked as the Best Christian University offering online film degrees1

What Is a Digital Film Degree in Film Production?

A film and video production degree program in digital production takes students behind the camera for an in-depth look at modern cinematography and narrative storytelling. Explore the business side of cinema, including the essentials of finance, budgets, and distribution. Offered by the College of Arts and Media, students develop foundational knowledge in technical film production that translates to small-scale projects and major motion pictures alike. Examine the aesthetic aspects of narrative story development in multiple genres of film, from music videos to documentaries.

Film production requires a unique blend of creativity and technical expertise. From the early days of silent films to modern digital creations, film has remained a dynamic medium that’s ideal for talented storytellers. You can pursue your passion for the arts and entertainment field with the Bachelor of Arts in Digital Film with an Emphasis in Production degree at Grand Canyon University on campus or online. The faculty members for this film degree are experts in their respective fields, and you benefit from collaborative interactions with other film students as you work toward realizing your career ambitions.

Why Earn Your Digital Film Degree in Production at GCU?

GCU’s on-campus or online bachelor's in digital film and video production opens up a world of possibilities for students with a passion for the arts and entertainment field. Film degree students learn how to thrive as members of a film production team. The curriculum encourages students to develop professional communication skills, leadership qualities, critical reasoning abilities and ethical decision-making skills.

This Bachelor of Arts in Digital Film degree requires a total of 120 credits for completion. Students may elect to take courses on campus or online via our robust, interactive learning platform.

Your application to GCU is free. Within 24 hours, we will review your transcripts and let you know of your graduation plan and estimated costs for your program. In order to be accepted, you must have an unweighted GPA of 3.0 or an unweighted GPA of 2.5 with qualifying exam scores. For detailed information, visit our Undergraduate Admissions Requirements page.

What You Will Learn

Film production students start with a broad survey of cinema, including its history and aesthetics. Other courses included with this degree program include:

  • Audio Production for Cinema and Television
  • Film Production Management
  • Nonlinear Editing
  • Cinematography
  • Professional Success within the Arts

Senior students work on advanced projects to apply their knowledge to hands-on, real-world situations. The on-campus or online digital film and video production degree concludes with the Digital Production Practicum, in which students complete a professional-level, short digital film.

Careers With a Film and Video Production Degree

Arts and entertainment is a dynamic career field, full of diverse possibilities for qualified job candidates. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook estimates job growth for film and video editors and camera operators to increase by about 29% from 2020 to 2030, faster than average, accounting for an estimated increase of 18,300 jobs in the field.2 The job outlook for producers and directors in that same time period is on track to grow by an estimated 24%, accounting for an estimated increase of 31,600 jobs in the field.2 Whether you choose to pursue a career in film production or television, there are several job opportunities that may be related to this film production degree, such as:

  • Director (film, television, industrial)
  • Producer
  • Camera operator (film, television, video)
  • Film and video editor

In the world of TV and film production, it’s common for new film degree graduates to get their foot in the door by first working as an intern or production assistant. GCU strives to graduate Bachelor of Arts in Digital Film with an Emphasis in Production students who are skilled communicators and networkers, which may be beneficial as they work toward their career goals.

Frequently Asked Questions

Even if earning a degree in film production is not required for entering the film business, the skills and connections acquired in a film degree can give you access to opportunities you wouldn’t necessarily receive with other majors or on your own. GCU’s leadership assures a robust curriculum that gives valuable experience in all areas of filmmaking.

Only available to on-campus students, the film production equipment that ground GCU digital film degree students have access to include a variety of professional camera, audio and lighting equipment. This consists of cameras made by Canon and RED, audio recorders by Zoom and microphones by Sennheiser. There are HMI, tungsten and LED lights and many other hardware items including professional pocket jibs and a doorway dolly with tracks.

GCU does require that digital film students have access to these software programs: (for production courses) Adobe Creative Cloud or DaVinci Resolve; (for screenwriting) Celtx, FadeIn or Final Draft. These programs will be used throughout your degree to give you extensive experience in each. Online students are responsible for paying for these programs. Our on-campus students have access to the computer lab for the editing software, but would still need to purchase the screenwriting software.

GCU also has a computer lab that houses multiple iMac computer stations which all run Adobe and DaVinci software, ensuring that you have ample opportunity to work on the same software that is used in the professional film industry.

1 Retrieved from, “The Best Online Film Degree Program” in March 2022

2 COVID-19 has adversely affected the global economy and data from 2020 may be atypical compared to prior years. The pandemic may impact the predicted future workforce outcomes indicated by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as well. Accordingly, data shown is based on 2020, which can be found here U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Film and Video Editors and Camera Operators and here U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Producers and Directors

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Total Credits: 120
Campus: 15 weeks [More Info]

Online: 7 weeks
[More Info]
Up to 90 credits, only 84 can be lower division
Campus: $8,250 per semester [More Info]
Online: $485 per credit [More Info]

Course List

General Education Requirements:
34-40 credits
60 credits
Open Elective Credits:
20-26 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
120 credits

General Education Requirements

General Education coursework prepares Grand Canyon University graduates to think critically, communicate clearly, live responsibly in a diverse world, and thoughtfully integrate their faith and ethical convictions into all dimensions of life. These competencies, essential to an effective and satisfying life, are outlined in the General Education Learner Outcomes. General Education courses embody the breadth of human understanding and creativity contained in the liberal arts and sciences tradition. Students take an array of foundational knowledge courses that promote expanded knowledge, insight, and the outcomes identified in the University’s General Education Competencies. The knowledge and skills students acquire through these courses serve as a foundation for successful careers and lifelong journeys of growing understanding and wisdom.


Upon completion of the Grand Canyon University's University Foundation experience, students will be able to demonstrate competency in the areas of academic skills and self-leadership. They will be able to articulate the range of resources available to assist them, explore career options related to their area of study, and have knowledge of Grand Canyon's community. Students will be able to demonstrate foundational academic success skills, explore GCU resources (CLA, Library, Career Center, ADA office, etc), articulate strategies of self-leadership and management and recognize opportunities to engage in the GCU community.

Course Options

  • UNV-103, University Success: 4
  • UNV-303, University Success: 4


Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to construct rhetorically effective communications appropriate to diverse audiences, purposes, and occasions (English composition, communication, critical reading, foreign language, sign language, etc.). Students are required to take 3 credits of English grammar or composition.

Course Options

  • ENG-105, English Composition I: 4
  • UNV-104, 21st Century Skills: Communication and Information Literacy: 4
  • ENG-106, English Composition II: 4
  • COM-263, Elements of Intercultural Communication: 4


Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to express aspects of Christian heritage and worldview. Students are required to take CWV-101/CWV-301.

Course Options

  • CWV-101, Christian Worldview: 4
  • CWV-301, Christian Worldview: 4


Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to use various analytic and problem-solving skills to examine, evaluate, and/or challenge ideas and arguments. Students are required to take 3 credits of college mathematics or higher.

Course Options

  • MAT-144, College Mathematics: 4


Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to demonstrate awareness and appreciation of and empathy for differences in arts and culture, values, experiences, historical perspectives, and other aspects of life (psychology, sociology, government, Christian studies, Bible, geography, anthropology, economics, political science, child and family studies, law, ethics, cross-cultural studies, history, art, music, dance, theater, applied arts, literature, health, etc.). If the predefined course is a part of the major, students need to take an additional course.

Course Options

  • PSY-102, General Psychology: 4
  • INT-244, World Religions: 4
  • SOC-100, Everyday Sociology: 4

Core Courses

Course Description

This course covers multiple eras and movements throughout the age of film.

Course Description

This course introduces students to the technical and aesthetic aspects of small format digital production as well as the basic principles of motion picture production. Students learn the language of film/digital video and how its manipulation can express one’s individual message or purpose.

Course Description

This introductory course helps digital film production students to develop skills and gain experience in acting and directing for the camera. Students participate on both sides of the camera. Course sessions include lecture, practical exercises, and preparation for analyzing and blocking a scene and working on a set. Students screen selected film clips to evaluate performances, explore methods to prepare for an audition, discuss the actor/director relationship, and examine the professional requirements of relating to a crew.

Course Description

Students in this writing intensive course learn storytelling for the screen through a managed regimen of in-class and out-of-class experiences that emphasize the essential mix of imagination and craft in writing. They hone their skills in observation, communication, and visualization, and receive instruction on structure for screenwriting and how to employ written language to articulate dramatic and visual expression.

Course Description

This course focuses on the elements that make up almost all storytelling. Students are encouraged to discover and develop their unique voices as writers and storytellers, while understanding the critical importance of working as part of a creative team. This course emphasizes the use of traditional storytelling, classic mythology, and the ways in which these devices apply to contemporary media.

Course Description

This course is an intensive exploration of the craft, technologies, and aesthetic principles of cinematography, lighting, and set design techniques. Lectures and in-class demonstrations cover video formats, cameras, exposure, lenses and optics, lighting units, lighting placement, lighting control, camera support, and camera movement.

Course Description

This course follows the general chronology of editing from capture and logging, through editing and effects, to final output of a finished program. The first half of the course is devoted entirely to a mastery of the editing software. The second half of the course is devoted to examining how and why editing is important. Different editing theories are explored, including montage, fast cut, long take, jump cut, and others.

Course Description

This course utilizes techniques of directing, sound editing, lighting, and advanced editing programs. Several practical and written exercises lead to a short digital production. Students spend time working with actors in front of the camera as well as composing shots to convey a story visually. Prerequisites: DFP-111 and DFP-221.

Course Description

This course will prepare the College of Fine Arts and Production student for professional success in their chosen field. Students will research their industry, gaining critical knowledge and learning the business practices needed for post-graduation success.

Course Description

In this writing intensive course, students will learn how to take a project from development into pre-production and then, how to effectively market and distribute the project. Although students will not be filming the project, students will utilize their production knowledge in building realistic schedules and budgets for their projects. Prerequisites: DFP-111 and DFP-221.

Course Description

This course exposes students to every aspect of media production. Students also learn how to work well in a team environment and to adhere to deadlines, time constraints, and medium limitations. Prerequisite: DFP-111.

Course Description

This course introduces basic audio production skills and encourages students to face the challenges of audio production within the film and television industry. Students will learn how to capture clear sound as well as how to manipulate sound during the post-production stage. Prerequisite: DFP-111.

Course Description

This course is a survey of music video and documentary productions. Students study, analyze, and implement techniques in both types of productions. Prerequisite: DFP-111.

Course Description

This class is about developing students’ understanding of the art of cinematic storytelling and montage and exposing them to the cueing, performing, and editing of Foley and Automated Dialogue Replacement. Students work on more advanced projects is integrated into the class as a means of mastering advanced editing tools and techniques.

Course Description

This practicum allows students to apply digital production principles. The course focuses on the process and completion of a short digital film. Prerequisite: DFP-451.


GCU Campus Student

Join Grand Canyon University’s vibrant and growing campus community, with daytime classes designed for traditional students. Immerse yourself in a full undergraduate experience, complete with curriculum designed within the context of our Christian worldview.

GCU Online Student

Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere.

GCU Evening Student

Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom.

* Please note that this list may contain programs and courses not presently offered, as availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program or course listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability.

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Programs or courses subject to change.

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