COURSE INFORMATION

Our Certificates aim to engage students with limited experience in the fields of filmmaking or screen acting. Whilst this may sound like an introductory course it’s actually far from it! The courses will deliver a broad depth of information and aim to get students working independently on major projects. Successful completion of an Higher Education Certificate course qualifies you for 60 ECTS: equivalent to 1 year of a degree course.

Our Diplomas are practice based and will have you assembling an impressive portfolio of work and taking the time to specialise in your interest. There is nothing more valuable than experience and our learning by doing approach is sure to expose you to a variety of technical, creative, organisational and pragmatic skills. Successful completion of an Higher Education Diploma qualifies you for 120 ECTS: equivalent to 2 years of a degree course.

Say you complete the 1-year course and you’d like to spend more time practicing your craft… we make it easy for you to continue onto the second year. Our seamless progression model allows you to decide how high you’d like to climb in your subject, at your own pace.

Our Bachelor (HONS) Degrees are internationally recognised undergraduate bachelor of arts programmes, administered through the University of St Mark & St John in the UK. They are suitable for students that have some prior experience in recording and/or production and aims to push students both creatively and technically and will provide the necessary skills to enter employment, further study or to produce their own work. Successful completion of a Bachelor qualifies you for 180 ECTS: equivalent to 3 years of a degree course. Our degrees are Bachelor of Arts awards.

dBs Berlin courses are accredited by the University of St Mark & St John (MARJON), a small, specialised university based in Plymouth in the South West of England, with around 3500 students. In 2012 they achieved 87% in their student satisfaction survey and 79.9% for teaching excellence in the Sunday Times university guide. We work closely with this university to deliver our music degrees in both the UK and Berlin and have had a very successful relationship with them for a number of years.

With over 175 Years of heritage, tradition and experience, MARJON has travelled a long road in becoming first a university college and now a full university. The university’s degree courses comply fully with the European Diploma Supplement Transcript and have equivalent ECTS values for all modules in keeping with the Bologna Declaration at the Convention for the Recognition of Qualifications Concerning Higher Education in the European Region. MARJONs is listed as an accredited degree awarding university on the following UK Government websites:

Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA)
UK Government recognised bodies

University website: marjon.ac.uk

Yes, you do!

Our qualifications are awarded:
HE Certificate or 1st year of the HE Diploma/Bachelor = 60 ECTS Credits
HE Diploma or first 2 years of the Bachelor = 120 ECTS Credits
Bachelor = 180 ECTS Credits .

Classes will occur Monday – Friday on average about 3 days out of the week. If a class needs to be rescheduled it will be moved to a Saturday. Your particular weekly arrangement depends on which group your are placed into for your course.

As a general rule you will have 12 hours of lessons delivered weekly. This is paired with 12 hours of supported time on campus and 12 hours self directed at home.

This means around a 36 hour commitment a week – so a full time course. Our timetable is subject to change week by week or semester by semester, so we can’t guarantee the possibility of regular shifts.

Sept 17, 2018 – June 14, 2019

Sept 17, 2018 – June 2020

Sept 17, 2018 – June 2021

HOW TO APPLY

You can apply now!

Once we have received and processed your application, we will contact you about next steps. Our admissions team (Sylvia and Alex) will get in touch to make sure you’ve applied for the right course according to your skill level, and that you have all your paperwork done. Then you will have the chance to chat with a tutor and ask them any questions you have about the course. If all goes well, you will be sent an ‘offer letter’. In order to confirm your acceptance of the offer and your place on the course, we ask that you pay a €750 enrolment fee. When we’ve received the enrolment fee we will send you your acceptance letter and you’re officially one of us!

Every application we receive has a chat with one of our senior members of teaching staff, usually conducted over Skype or the phone. This is more of a casual conversation than formal interview. During the chat we will go over your application, experience and motivations for joining the school and also answer any questions you/we might have. As all our classes are in English, this is also a chance for both us and you to be sure you will be comfortable in your lessons.

Please be aware we are not able to offer student visas in Germany for students outside of the EU because our courses, although delivered in Berlin, result in a UK based qualification and therefore the German visa authorities will not issue a German student visa for our college.

Citizens of EU countries or those with an EU passport, do not require a visa to study in Germany.

For non-EU citizens:

Before you make your application, we do ask that you investigate the options for obtaining a visa for your country of origin. If you are made an offer to study with us, you will be required to show evidence of your visa before we can officially accept you on to the course.

For more extensive information click here for our main visa website page.

FEES & FINANCE

Each year and for all courses you will be required to pay a €750 enrolment fee to secure your place in the course. You will then be required to pay the annual balance. You have two ways to pay the balance - either as a single payment or by monthly payments.

The single payment does work out to be less, however we offer the monthly payment option as this is often very helpful for managing your budget. Note that if you choose the monthly payments you are still eligible for the full course fees if you choose to finish your studies early. Please see our terms and conditions for details of this agreement.

Visit our fees and finance page to see exactly what you pay and what you get.

Have a look at our blog item on this subject called Berlin a Budget Paradise for Students. In the blog we’ve given official figures but in reality it’s possible to live even more cheaply than this.

Heres another more general page on student finance and living costs from the German Academic Exchange services. Scroll down to ‘What is the cost of living in Germany?’. Remember that Berlin is actually around 10-20% cheaper than the rest of Germany for most costs such as accommodation and food expenses though!

STUDYING WITH US

At dBs Berlin, we’re not aiming to be the most famous, most expensive or fanciest film school. We’re aiming to create a home for passionate, dedicated life learners. Our focus is on you. We’re crafting the film program that you need, not one of false promises, name-dropping or smoke and mirrors.

Our courses are not easy. They’re intensive, challenging and sometimes exhausting. But they’ll reward your hard work with finely-tuned skills, a wide net of contacts and an experience you will always carry with you. And - it’s fun. We believe in the power of play.

Many of our practices and customs you won’t find at any other educational institution, let alone any other film school. We have a culture where you can bring your whole self. Don’t just study for exams. Don’t aim for the degree. Aim to better yourself. Aim to change the world. Aim to grow and learn alongside positive, hardworking people in a beautiful, inspiring location.

That’s what’s so great about us.

Good question. Think long and hard before you answer. Do you want to study? Or do you want to make? There are lots of places that offer the former. We offer the latter.

We currently have approximately 350 students studying both music and film, here at dBs Berlin.

Classes have no more than 20 students.

As Berlin is an international city, dBs Berlin reflects that. We have students from all across the globe, and you'll be working and collaborating with them.

Students are required to be over 18, but beyond that we don't have an age limit. We do have participants as young as 18 and others over 30, although generally students tend to average around mid-20s.

All courses have large elements of project work and practical assignments, which must be achieved to schedule and within the time spent studying the course. There won’t be any traditional exams, but the Bachelor course does require a written thesis.

All classes are taught in English and any coursework is also submitted in English.

Being able to communicate with your tutors and classmates is very important to keep up with your work and to enjoy your time at dBs Berlin. We have suggested English levels below and will take steps to assist you, but please do take the time to consider your levels with both written and spoken English. We suggest a minimum of IELTS 6.0.

Read more about the English requirements on the website of our accrediting partner university.

We don’t. There are no guarantees in the entertainment industry. Anyone that tells you otherwise is lying to your face.

Every single successful filmmaker has taken their own path. That means they’ve braved obstacles that no one else has had to face before or since. And so will you.

But you don’t have to do it alone. At dBs, you’re not attending school. You’re joining a creative community. You’re constantly working, wrapping up the last project and launching the next at the same time. You’re meeting other likeminded, passionate, hardworking creatives who will inspire you, and whom you will inspire. You’re getting support from industry-professional tutors who have seen the path ahead of you and will guide you with patience, wisdom, and the tools you’ll need. You’re meeting and working with outside professionals and alumni creating big things and offering you a seat on the ride.

We will do everything we can to equip you for success. You will have to find the exact way yourself - but we’ll have your back.

As well as recruiting people who are experts in their specific fields, so that you gain as much knowledge and advice from their real-world experience as you can, we strive to place tutors who provide students with the care, supportive atmosphere and stimulation required to get the most out of their course of study. Read more about our them on our Team Page!

In addition to our tutors’ experience and tutoring ability, we organise regular Guest Sessions from industry professionals for one-off lectures, pitching panels, and critical feedback on your projects throughout the course. We believe in the value of receiving real industry input on a regular basis to enhance your own personal development.

There's no requirement for you to have any experience in filmmaking. There's also no requirement that you are a beginner. Try to think of the 1-year course as a challenge - it's a place for you to come and work hard under limiting conditions to train your creative muscles and build up your skillset. We offer several weekly workshops and roundtables to equip you with any technical knowledge or aesthetic feedback you might need, but only if you need them.

BUILDINGS & EQUIPMENT

The short answer is yes. Bookable time will be provided and can be reserved for personal and school projects, outside of scheduled class time. We want our equipment to be used!

However, especially in the case of taking equipment off-site there will be an equipment rental contract in place that outlines what happens in the case of any damages or loss of equipment. There will not be any charge for using our equipment.

You will need an external hard drive either a USB or Thunderbolt connection. We would also recommend a pair of good headphones for audio editing. Access to editing facilities and camera equipment will be provided as part of the course. You may already own or have access to your own camera or computer equipment, which is a great start as being able to practice whenever possible is a huge part of becoming an expert.

We’ve moved to our brand new film facilities at our Funkhaus campus. These inlcuse 4 IT workshop spaces, 2 ideas labs, a multi purpose lecture/workshop space, 2 film production offices, a film studio, a prop-shop and flexible access to many of the other spaces at the Funkhaus

For our first-year productions we have carefully curated a camera, sound and lighting package lovingly called the Guerilla Kit. Designed to give you everything you need to make a full film while still keeping you as mobile as possible, Guerilla Kits include Panasonic GH5 mirrorless cameras, handheld rig systems, a lightweight tripod, a cinema-moded lens set and many more accessories. Also included are top of the line field audio recording gear, tungsten and daylight LED lights and stands, all smartly packed into professional bags that are both durable and comfortable to carry around Berlin. From the second year, students move onto shooting with the Sony A7s II, heavy-duty grip gear, fluid head tripods, Arri open-faced lights, doorway dollies, field monitors and much more - and we are constantly expanding and updating our gear room to offer the best learning and shooting experience.

Yes you can! We are very happy to arrange tours of our film and music production training facilities and studios with our Open Days. These are a great opportunity for you to get a feel for our atmosphere and the fantastic environment you will be working and learning in.

If you would like to come and visit, please just get in touch via admissions(at)dbsfilm.net. Or else keep an eye on the page where we announce when we will host the next Open Day Screening

LIVING IN BERLIN

We can recommend different ways of searching out accommodation and will certainly help with any problems or communications, but do not actually place students in accommodation ourselves as we don’t currently have the facilities to do so.

We’ll always try to help our students with advice and support though and are always keeping an eye out in Berlin for local opportunities or developments. There's more information about this on our music webpage, so please read more on Living in Berlin

As Berlin is an international city you will find that English is widely spoken, which does make it fairly easy to get around. However, learning German will make your time here much easier and more fulfilling!

Unfortunately this is not yet possible because dBs Berlin is not part of the German state funded education system and therefore do not qualify for subsidy. StudentenWerk seldom have enough places for the demand in Berlin in any case, so many students go to private accommodation providers.

Yes, we have dedicated student services team to help you get the most out of your time studying and living in Berlin!

We keep an up to date database on events and services in Berlin and will help where we can with understanding German authorities or official processes, such as registering yourself as a resident.