Use this search engine that only looks through specialised film websites. It is a REALLY good tool. Enjoy…
Journals and Academic Research
Also check out the great selection of online journals and resources that the DCS library has signed up for…
Those good folk over at BFI (British Film Institute) have come up with detailed research options and bibliographies for a whole variety of topics. This will really help you find articles and books of substance that will help you in your IS/EE. They have info on a wide variety of topics, ranging from Auteur Theory, to 007, to Iranian Cinema, to Animation, to Censorship, to Modern Noir, to Women in Film, to Gay and Lesbian Cinema, to Charlie Chaplin and Alfred Hitchcock. Check them out here:
Research – Continued…
The following are some suggestions that are worth consulting in the planning and creation of your independent study
Examples of research by previous students
Abstracts of university theses
A range of magazines
Glossaries of key terms
Quotes by theorists
Contrasting film posters
Movie stills and DVD covers
Film magazine covers
Moving image resources
Online academic film journals
How to go about my Research Project
Whilst this project does involve lots of research and the bringing together of many ideas, sources, images and quotations, it is aimed at being a fun and enjoyable project – this is why it is soooo important that you choose a topic that is of interest to you. Let’s face it, film history and theory is a HUGE topic and there are endless areas to choose from – when there are very few limitations on what you can study, it can be very daunting to select your topic. In order to narrow this down, start by thinking about the following questions…
Why did you become a film students in the first place?
What interests you MIST about film?
Which types of films do you enjoy watching most?
What topics or areas of study have you enjoyed most in this course? How could you turn them into an appropriate topic for your Independent Study?
Who is your favourite director? Why? Which other directors have a similar style?
Which genre do you enjoy watching most?
Which genre do you enjoy studying most? (This may be the same as the previous question, but it may well be different too)
Are there are countries that have a particularly rich film history that interest you?
If you are finding it really difficult to choose the topic, come and have a chat with me and we should be able to narrow down your options together. Once we have come up with your broad topic, research can begin. You should change direction if you are finding the topic too problematic – but only after consultation with me!
Define the topic
What is the bare outline of the area for discussion?
Break down the topic into sub-topics or key concepts.
Develop a broad overview of the topic by browsing sources.
Become fully conversant with the necessary terminology.
Develop a research strategy
What is the scope of the project?
How much information will be needed?
What is the appropriate level of the project?
How manageable is the project?
Can it be fully developed given the limits of the script?
Locate and retrieve the information
Determine what type of information is needed—books, articles, current or archive information.
Identify the likely and unlikely sources or places to find information.
Ensure that you have all the information you need including the full citation of any references that are collected. When photocopying always write down the title and author of the book.
Evaluate the information
Establish authority—who is the author and what is their credibility?
Determine the scope of the work—what is its purpose?
Evaluate accuracy and relevance.
Recognize bias and/or point of view.
Determine whether there is enough information
Look at the length and focus of your topic.
Are there any unanswered questions?
Does your topic represent only one point of view?
Could you include anything further?
Web pages require the same, and sometimes more, caution as any other source. Anyone with access to a server can put material on the Internet. Do not assume statements are true. As a critical user a student should consider the following.
Who is responsible for the site?
What is its rationale/purpose?
Is the information recent or part of an archive?
Is the site permanent or part of a permanent organisation?
Please include all of the following aspects in your IS…
Include a table like the one below at the bottom of the page underneath your rationale. It will help the examiner understand your key texts.
Film – Pulp Fiction
Director – Tarantino
Country – USA
Year – 1994
Make sure you refer to country and talk about influence.
– Why did these films come about?
– What socio-political or socio-cultural influences are there behind them?
– Did they set a trend or make an impact?
– If yes, why?
This does not have to be in huge depth, but it should be addressed.
Make sure you clearly link your images in the appendix to the body of the documentary.
Filmography needed too.