UCLA Extension



With a focus on independent filmmaking, the Directing Certificate teaches participants the essential principles of the art and craft of directing. Our instructors mentor students in the role of story, directing actors, and the aesthetics of filmmaking, as well as the practical responsibilities of the director in relationship to key positions on a production. Using the student’s own equipment, directing workshops offer a comprehensive hands-on component. Beginning with simple exercises, students progress to directing an original short film that is screened for an invited audience.

Application & Candidacy Fee: $200*
Approximate Program Tuition: $9,040 (Students are responsible for their own production costs.)
Approximate Cost of Textbooks: $550
Additional Required Materials: Directing students must have access to a digital video camera and computer with editing software. Editing software and hardware is available at a discount for UCLA Extension certificate students at the UCLA Store. Certificate completion requires the production of several five-minute scenes and a short, thesis film. Students are responsible for their own production costs.
Duration: 1 year (Full-Time pace) to 3 years
Unit Requirement: 50
Minimum GPA Requirement for Certificate Completion: 3.0

*This program is open admission. The Application & Candidacy fee establishes your candidacy in a certificate for a period of time covering normal progress toward completion and allows you access to a variety of program benefits.

Domestic students may begin the program in any quarter. F-1 Visa students are only eligible for entry in the fall or spring.

To apply for and establish your candidacy in the Directing Certificate click here!

Course scheduling and fees subject to change without notice.

Please note that required courses will only count once toward the overall unit requirement for the certificate program.

Click on a selection from the right navigation menu for complete program requirements and quarter by quarter enrollment recommendations.

Program at a Glance

3 Foundation Courses (12 units)

Course No. | Title Units Fall Winter Spring Summer
FILM TV X 404 Pre-Production and Production for Film and Television + 4 R/O/I I/O R/O/I/H(I) R/O/I
FILM TV X 404A Post-Production for Film and Television 4 I/O R/O/I R/O/I O/H(I)
FILM TV X 476.581 The Language of Filmmaking 4 R/O/I I/O R/O/I I/O

8 Required Directing Courses (34 units)

FILM TV X 478.9 The Craft of the Director + 4 I/R I
FILM TV X 476.95 Directing Workshop I: Composition and Movement * + 4 I/R I/R I/R I/R
FILM TV X 476.95B Directing Workshop II: Storytelling * 4 I/R I/R
FILM TV X 475.44 Directing Actors for the Screen 4 I I/R I/R I
FILM TV X 479.613 The Art and Craft of Film Editing 4 I/R I/O I I/O
FILM TV X 476.271 Production Sound for Directors 2 H(R) R
FILM TV X 476.243 Developing Your Short Film 4 I/R I/R I/R I/R
FILM TV X 476.12B Advanced Filmmaking Workshop: Production and Post-Production ** 8 H(I) H(I)

Select 1 Elective (4 units)

Students must complete 1 elective (4 units) from courses numbered X 400-499 in DirectingCinematographyFilm & TV Development, Producing, Business & Management of Entertainment, Post-Production, Acting, or Writers’ Program/Screenwriting. New electives are added regularly.

THEATER X 407.5 Acting Techniques: The Fundamentals 4 I I I I
FILM TV X 476.6 Low-Budget Filmmaking 4 O I O I
FILM TV X 478.432 Direct and Produce Reality and Documentary Television 4 R H(I)
FILM TV X 477.84 Introduction to Adobe Premiere 4 I/O I/O I/R I/O
MUSC X 484.31 Music Supervision for Film and Television 4 I/R I I
MUSC X 482.3 Bringing the Power of Music to Film: A Film Scoring Seminar 4 R
MUSC X 482.8 Anatomy of a Film Score 4 I
FILM TV X 499.2 Film and Television Internship 4 R/O/I R/O/I R/O/I R/O/I

+ Should be completed within the first 2 quarters of study.

* Should be taken in sequential order.

** Should be taken in the last quarter of the program.

Chart Legend: I = In-Person | R = Remote | O = Online | H (I/R) = Hybrid (In-Person/Remote)

Learn about our new directing elective, Understanding the Story: Script Analysis for Directors with instructor and accomplished television director, Peter Lauer

If you’re trying to decide which camera to purchase for your studies, we recommend you take a look at this seminar by our cinematography instructor, Jason Knutzen, on “Choosing the Best Camera for You”.