The River Thames outside DLD College London

Media and Film Studies Update

9th November 23

Since the Department’s last article, twelve months ago, we have achieved great success across A Level Film & Media and the BTEC Creative Media Extended Diploma & Certificate. The Film and Media Department has experienced a gradual rise within the DLD community over the years, establishing itself as one of the highest achievers with 100% A*-B across the board within the A Level Qualification and D*-M in the BTEC. This is a testament to our students’ efforts and resilience, especially as just under 100% of students were either classified as having a Special Educational Need (SEND) or English as an Additional Language (EAL).

As we explain to all our students, success doesn’t happen overnight. We would be lying if we said the students started the course achieving A*-B or D*-M from day one, in fact the vast majority were achieving C’s and below for the majority of their first year at DLD. It therefore highlights, that despite feeling immense pride in the students’ achievements last summer, the Media & Film Department do not focus fully on results, we focus on a holistic programme that develops student confidence, whilst boosting their enthusiasm to develop their practical and analytical skills. So, how do we create a holistic programme?

For the students, teaching and learning doesn’t just happen in the classroom. It happens within our Media & Film Society; where we watch films from different cultures, have photography competitions and teach camera and lighting workshops. It’s a safe space for the students to experiment and build their confidence, whilst finding out what pathways they can take once they leave DLD College London. Furthermore, we try to embrace our surroundings. Hannah Ryder, one of our Media teachers, organised a Sky Academy trip where students created their own newsreels. Whilst Marie Kerrigan, our Head of BTEC and teacher of Media & Film, took our Year 12’s and 13’s to the UCAS Create Your Futures event at London’s ExCel Centre. This event has assisted our students in the past as we have seen our alumni attend Universities such as Nottingham, Manchester, Chichester, Ravensbourne and Bournemouth, along with films schools such as the MetFilm School and London Film Academy.

Secondly, in achieving high grades, the Department has done well at leading interventions, offering Media & Film Clinic sessions for those who have consistently scored below 50% in assessments and bringing in Media & Film expert Rob Miller into the College on the run up to summer exams to help give top up revision sessions for the students before they head into the exam season. These interventions led to our students creating excellent pieces of coursework across, which ultimately contributed to their overall success last summer.

After a period of success, the Department are now thinking toward the future and how we can continue developing the wholistic programme we offer. The studio space, which houses our podcasting and green screen facilities, will be used more within the timetabled curriculum over the coming year or two. Whilst we also look to create more media products for our community; for example, the recording and photography of college events, the publication of a college magazine or the creation of a college podcast. In essence, new avenues that will allow our students to continue growing. One can’t forget Esports, one of our new and highly successful programmes, which continues to grow and succeed both academically and in national competition with our Esports teams defeating other schools on a weekly basis. Our thanks goes to Max Copley, who has been leading this subject and we look forward to seeing him continue to drive the course forward over the coming months.

Finally, it would be wrong of me not to mention the outstanding support Marie Kerrigan, Hannah Ryder, Gareth Evans and Max Copley give to our students. As mentioned at the beginning of the article, success doesn’t appear overnight. The foundations that I have inherited from my predecessor, Marie Kerrigan, have helped steer our Department into the direction it wishes to go in – developing new, creative and confident leaders for a diverse world. We look forward to what the rest of the academic year brings and the more positive stories within.

Michael Flack, Head of Film and Media Studies