Film, Video & Photographic Arts

2022 Best Film, Video & Photographic Arts Schools

344 Colleges in the United States
15,516 Film Degrees Awarded
$22,714 Avg Early-Career Salary
If you plan on majoring in film, video and photographic arts, you won't be alone since the degree program is ranked #64 in the country in terms of popularity. So, you have a fair amount of options to choose from when looking for a school.

For its 2022 ranking, College Factual looked at 344 schools in the United States to determine which ones were the best for film, video and photographic arts students pursuing a degree. When you put them all together, these colleges and universities awarded 15,516 degrees in film, video and photographic arts during the 2019-2020 academic year.

What's on this page:

Choosing a Great Film, Video & Photographic Arts School

Best Film, Video & Photographic Arts Schools The film program you select can have a big impact on your future. That's why we developed our collection of Best Schools for Film, Video & Photographic Arts rankings. For our Best Overall Film, Video & Photographic Arts School rankings, we roll up the results of our degree-level rankings, weighted by the number of degrees awarded at that level.

In order to find the schools that are the best fit for you, you may want to filter to one of the degree levels below.

Film, Video & Photographic Arts Rankings by Degree Level

Since picking the right college can be one of the most important decisions of your life, we've developed the Best Film, Video & Photographic Arts Schools ranking, along with many other major-related rankings, to help you make that decision. More interested in schools in a specific area of the country? Filter this list by region or state.

To further help you make the college decision, we've developed a unique tool called College Combat that allows you to compare schools based on the factors that matter the most to you. Go ahead and give it a try, or bookmark the link so you can check it out later.

Read more about College Factual's methodology.

Best Schools for Film, Video & Photographic Arts in the United States

Although we recommend filtering by degree level first, you can view the list below to see which schools give the educational experience for the film degree levels they offer. Only those schools that rank in the top 15% of all the schools we analyze get awarded with a place on this list.

25 Top Schools in Film

#1

Stanford University

Stanford, CA
Master's Degree Highest Degree Type
44th Most Popular In CA

Any student pursuing a degree in film, video and photographic arts needs to check out Stanford University. Located in the suburb of Stanford, Stanford is a private not-for-profit university with a large student population. A Best Schools rank of #3 out of 2,576 schools nationwide means Stanford is a great university overall.

There were roughly 12 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Stanford in the most recent year we have data available.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Stanford University

Master's Degree Highest Degree Type
102 Film Degrees Awarded

It is difficult to beat American Film Institute Conservatory if you want to pursue a degree in film, video and photographic arts. Located in the large city of Los Angeles, American Film Institute is a private not-for-profit school with a small student population.

There were roughly 102 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at American Film Institute in the most recent data year. Those film, video and photographic arts students who get their degree from American Film Institute Conservatory make $9,386 more than the average film grad.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from American Film Institute Conservatory

#3

Colgate University

Hamilton, NY
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
32nd Most Popular In NY

Any student pursuing a degree in film, video and photographic arts has to look into Colgate University. Located in the town of Hamilton, Colgate is a private not-for-profit university with a small student population. A Best Schools rank of #30 out of 2,576 schools nationwide means Colgate is a great university overall.

There were roughly 15 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Colgate in the most recent data year.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Colgate University

#4

Dartmouth College

Hanover, NH
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
3rd Most Popular In NH

Every student pursuing a degree in film, video and photographic arts has to look into Dartmouth College. Located in the town of Hanover, Dartmouth is a private not-for-profit college with a moderately-sized student population. A Best Schools rank of #6 out of 2,576 schools nationwide means Dartmouth is a great college overall.

There were roughly 22 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Dartmouth in the most recent data year.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Dartmouth College

#5

Lafayette College

Easton, PA
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
7th Most Popular In PA
$15,067 Median Student Debt

Located in the large suburb of Easton, Lafayette is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. This college ranks 6th out of 134 schools for overall quality in the state of Pennsylvania.

There were about 18 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Lafayette in the most recent year we have data available.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Lafayette College

Master's Degree Highest Degree Type
3rd Most Popular In MO

WUSTL is a fairly large private not-for-profit university located in the suburb of Saint Louis. A Best Schools rank of #28 out of 2,576 schools nationwide means WUSTL is a great university overall.

There were approximately 23 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at WUSTL in the most recent year we have data available.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Washington University in St Louis

#7

Emory University

Atlanta, GA
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
7th Most Popular In GA

Emory is a fairly large private not-for-profit university located in the large city of Atlanta. This university ranks 2nd out of 80 colleges for overall quality in the state of Georgia.

There were about 14 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Emory in the most recent year we have data available.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Emory University

Doctor's Degree Highest Degree Type
406 Film Degrees Awarded

Located in the city of Los Angeles, USC is a private not-for-profit university with a very large student population. A Best Schools rank of #33 out of 2,576 colleges nationwide means USC is a great university overall.

There were approximately 406 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at USC in the most recent year we have data available. Film, Video & Photographic Arts degree recipients from University of Southern California get an earnings boost of around $5,786 over the average earnings of film, video and photographic arts graduates.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from University of Southern California

#9

Barnard College

New York, NY
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
25th Most Popular In NY

Barnard is a small private not-for-profit college located in the large city of New York. A Best Schools rank of #31 out of 2,576 colleges nationwide means Barnard is a great college overall.

There were roughly 20 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Barnard in the most recent data year.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Barnard College

#10

University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
8th Most Popular In PA

UPenn is a very large private not-for-profit university located in the large city of Philadelphia. A Best Schools rank of #13 out of 2,576 colleges nationwide means UPenn is a great university overall.

There were approximately 25 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at UPenn in the most recent year we have data available.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from University of Pennsylvania

#11

Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
14th Most Popular In MA

Located in the city of Chestnut Hill, Boston College is a private not-for-profit college with a fairly large student population. This college ranks 8th out of 72 colleges for overall quality in the state of Massachusetts.

There were about 8 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Boston College in the most recent data year.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Boston College

#12

Vassar College

Poughkeepsie, NY
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
$19,000 Median Student Debt

Located in the large suburb of Poughkeepsie, Vassar is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. This college ranks 9th out of 160 colleges for overall quality in the state of New York.

There were roughly 19 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Vassar in the most recent year we have data available. Film, Video & Photographic Arts degree recipients from Vassar College get an earnings boost of about $7,986 above the typical earnings of film, video and photographic arts majors.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Vassar College

#13

Vanderbilt University

Nashville, TN
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
6th Most Popular In TN

Located in the large city of Nashville, Vanderbilt is a private not-for-profit university with a large student population. A Best Schools rank of #37 out of 2,576 colleges nationwide means Vanderbilt is a great university overall.

There were approximately 15 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Vanderbilt in the most recent data year.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Vanderbilt University

#14

Brandeis University

Waltham, MA
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
8th Most Popular In MA

Brandeis is a moderately-sized private not-for-profit university located in the city of Waltham. This university ranks 15th out of 72 colleges for overall quality in the state of Massachusetts.

There were about 23 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Brandeis in the most recent data year.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Brandeis University

Doctor's Degree Highest Degree Type
75 Film Degrees Awarded

Located in the midsize city of Ann Arbor, U-M is a public university with a very large student population. A Best Schools rank of #40 out of 2,576 colleges nationwide means U-M is a great university overall.

There were roughly 75 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at U-M in the most recent year we have data available. Students who graduate with their degree from the film program report average early career income of $23,200.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

#16

Hamilton College

Clinton, NY
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
35th Most Popular In NY

Located in the medium-sized suburb of Clinton, Hamilton is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. A Best Schools rank of #39 out of 2,576 schools nationwide means Hamilton is a great college overall.

There were about 1 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Hamilton in the most recent year we have data available.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Hamilton College

Doctor's Degree Highest Degree Type
105 Film Degrees Awarded

UCLA is a very large public university located in the city of Los Angeles. This university ranks 11th out of 203 colleges for overall quality in the state of California.

There were about 105 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at UCLA in the most recent year we have data available. Those film, video and photographic arts students who get their degree from University of California - Los Angeles make $4,486 more than the standard film grad.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from University of California - Los Angeles

#18

New York University

New York, NY
Doctor's Degree Highest Degree Type
568 Film Degrees Awarded

NYU is a fairly large private not-for-profit university located in the large city of New York. This university ranks 7th out of 160 schools for overall quality in the state of New York.

There were about 568 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at NYU in the most recent year we have data available. Degree recipients from the film, video and photographic arts degree program at New York University get $5,586 more than the average college grad in this field shortly after graduation.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from New York University

#19

Tufts University

Medford, MA
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
4th Most Popular In MA
37 Film Degrees Awarded

Located in the suburb of Medford, Tufts is a private not-for-profit university with a fairly large student population. This university ranks 6th out of 72 schools for overall quality in the state of Massachusetts.

There were approximately 37 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Tufts in the most recent year we have data available.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Tufts University

Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
6th Most Popular In IL

UIUC is a fairly large public university located in the city of Champaign. This university ranks 3rd out of 102 colleges for overall quality in the state of Illinois.

There were roughly 11 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at UIUC in the most recent data year.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

#21

Emerson College

Boston, MA
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
422 Film Degrees Awarded

Emerson is a medium-sized private not-for-profit college located in the large city of Boston. This college ranks 16th out of 72 schools for overall quality in the state of Massachusetts.

There were about 422 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Emerson in the most recent year we have data available. Degree recipients from the film, video and photographic arts program at Emerson College get $3,586 more than the typical college grad in this field shortly after graduation.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Emerson College

Doctor's Degree Highest Degree Type
84 Film Degrees Awarded

Located in the medium-sized city of Berkeley, UC Berkeley is a public university with a very large student population. A Best Schools rank of #26 out of 2,576 schools nationwide means UC Berkeley is a great university overall.

There were approximately 84 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at UC Berkeley in the most recent data year. Graduates who receive their degree from the film program make about $16,300 for their early career.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from University of California - Berkeley

#23

American University

Washington, DC
Master's Degree Highest Degree Type
88 Film Degrees Awarded

Located in the large city of Washington, The American University is a private not-for-profit university with a large student population. This university ranks 3rd out of 9 schools for overall quality in the state of District of Columbia.

There were approximately 88 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at The American University in the most recent year we have data available. Those film, video and photographic arts students who get their degree from American University receive $12,636 more than the standard film grad.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from American University

#24

Wellesley College

Wellesley, MA
Bachelor's Degree Highest Degree Type
10th Most Popular In MA

Wellesley is a small private not-for-profit college located in the suburb of Wellesley. This college ranks 9th out of 72 colleges for overall quality in the state of Massachusetts.

There were roughly 11 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Wellesley in the most recent year we have data available.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Wellesley College

#25

Northwestern University

Evanston, IL
Doctor's Degree Highest Degree Type
5th Most Popular In IL

Located in the small city of Evanston, Northwestern is a private not-for-profit university with a very large student population. A Best Schools rank of #14 out of 2,576 schools nationwide means Northwestern is a great university overall.

There were roughly 13 film, video and photographic arts students who graduated with this degree at Northwestern in the most recent data year.

More information about a degree in film, video and photographic arts from Northwestern University

Rest of the Top Best Film, Video & Photographic Arts Schools

#25

Northwestern University

Evanston, IL
#26

Occidental College

Los Angeles, CA
#30

St Olaf College

Northfield, MN
#31

University of Chicago

Chicago, IL

#32

Valencia College

Orlando, FL

#33

Yale University

New Haven, CT
#34

Syracuse University

Syracuse, NY
#35

Chapman University

Orange, CA
#36

Endicott College

Beverly, MA
#39

Purdue University - Main Campus

West Lafayette, IN
#40

Carleton College

Northfield, MN

#41

University of Georgia

Athens, GA

#43

Binghamton University

Vestal, NY
#44

Middlebury College

Middlebury, VT
#46

Winona State University

Winona, MN
#47

Scottsdale Community College

Scottsdale, AZ
#48

Loyola Marymount University

Los Angeles, CA
#49

Boston University

Boston, MA

Additional Award Winners

This list represents the rest of the schools awarded a Best Film, Video & Photographic Arts Schools badge. Showing in this list means the school was ranked in the top 15% of the 344 different United States film, video and photographic arts schools we analyzed.

Rank College Location
50 Taylor University Upland, IN
51 Ithaca College Ithaca, NY

Honorable Mentions

These are some additional schools worth mentioning that are also great but just didn't quite make the cut to earn our top Best Film, Video & Photographic Arts Schools award.

Rank College Location
52 Clemson University Clemson, SC
53 Brigham Young University - Provo Provo, UT
54 Johns Hopkins University Baltimore, MD
55 Mount Holyoke College South Hadley, MA
56 University of Missouri - Columbia Columbia, MO
57 Smith College Northampton, MA
58 Rutgers University - New Brunswick New Brunswick, NJ
59 Oberlin College Oberlin, OH
60 California State University - Long Beach Long Beach, CA
61 Seattle University Seattle, WA
62 School of Visual Arts New York, NY
63 University of North Carolina School of the Arts Winston-Salem, NC
64 Muhlenberg College Allentown, PA
65 University at Buffalo Buffalo, NY
66 Rhode Island School of Design Providence, RI
67 University of Nebraska - Lincoln Lincoln, NE
68 Fordham University Bronx, NY

Film, Video & Photographic Arts by Region

View the Best Film, Video & Photographic Arts Schools for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

View All Rankings >

One of 10 majors within the Visual & Performing Arts area of study, Film, Video & Photographic Arts has other similar majors worth exploring.

Film Concentrations

Major Annual Graduates
Film & Video Production 7,202
Film/Cinema/Media Studies 5,067
Photography 1,967
Other Film/Video & Photographic Arts 1,224
Documentary Production 56

View All Film Concentrations >

Related Major Annual Graduates
Fine & Studio Arts 33,317
Design & Applied Arts 30,023
Music 25,677
Drama & Theater Arts 16,685
General Visual & Performing Arts 5,811
Arts & Media Management 4,746
Dance 3,237
Other Visual Art 937
Crafts, Folk Art & Artisanry 103
Community/Environmental/Socially-Engaged Art 3

View All Film Related Majors >

Notes and References

  • The bars on the spread charts above show the distribution of the schools on this list +/- one standard deviation from the mean.
  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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