Syracuse University

Newhouse School of Public Communications

Documentary Film and History


Syracuse University

Syracuse, NY 13244

United States



Program Information

Degrees Offered:


Format: Campus

Program Description:

Documentary film and history is about the documentary tradition. Students learn how documentaries are funded, researched, designed, and produced. This is a cross-disciplinary program in which you will deepen your understanding of the history of film while acquiring the practical skills of the filmmaker’s craft. Many students have an undergraduate major or minor in history. The program includes a combination of courses that are critical at the master’s level with practical skills courses: • The curriculum is structured around a yearlong production of a documentary. Each student researches, designs, and produces his or her own film and crews for classmates. • The minimum film length is 25 minutes, though the film may be part of a longer piece. Many students finish a feature-length film after graduation. Unique features of our program: • The program is affiliated with two world-class schools at Syracuse University—the Newhouse School and the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. • Your year ends with an internship that may place you with Ken Burns, Alex Gibney, or other award-winning documentarians. • The program is connected to an impressive network of documentary professionals who advise, provide internships and, in some cases, jobs. Outcomes: • You’ll be prepared to work as a writer, editor, director, designer, or executive at an independent production company or with companies like NBC, Focus Films, Kurdistan National Television, and Jigsaw Productions. • Recent graduates are working as a producer at National Geographic Television; an editor for a post house with offices in New York and London; an associate producer for an academic award-winning documentary producer; and a supervising producer for an Academy Award-winning Hollywood production company.


Newhouse is accredited by ACEJMC.

International Student Requirements:

International students must submit a TOEFL score of 100 or higher or an IELTS score of 7.0 or higher.

Facts & Figures

Financial Aid: Yes

International Financial Aid: Yes

# of Credits Required: 38

Classification: Doctoral/Research University—Extensive

Locale: Midsize City

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