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Pre-College Cinematography

Session A (July 7 – July 13, 2024)
Session B (July 14 – July 20, 2024)
Session C (July 28 – August 3, 2024)
Session D (August 4 – August 10, 2024)

Program Overview

The UCLA Film and Television Cinematography Summer Institute gives high school students an unparalleled opportunity to study cinematography at one of the most prestigious film schools in the world. This one-week intensive workshop is designed for highly motivated rising juniors and seniors, and spring 2024 high school graduates. Students are immersed in the concepts, creativity and technique of cinematic lighting through a combination of lectures and hands-on lighting exercises. Students will explore such concepts as composition, framing, blocking, lens choice, camera movement/placement, exposure, lighting techniques/equipment, shot design, and set protocol.

  • Students work on UCLA sound stages with the latest digital cinema cameras and lighting equipment
  • The program curriculum consists of a combination of lectures and hands-on lighting exercises
  • Class exercises will be screened at the end of the workshop. Friends and family are welcome!
  • This workshop carries 2 units of UCLA college credit.

This is an intensive immersion experience for beginning to intermediate filmmakers designed to form a basic understanding of the aesthetic, creative, and logistical decisions involved in lighting for film and television. Previous experience in cinematography is not required.


Participants of the UCLA Film and Television Cinematography Summer Institute will be enrolled in the following course:

  • FTV 75 – Lighting for Film and Television (2 Units)

Due to the intensive nature of the program, a maximum of one program absence is permitted.


This track is open to high school students enrolled in 10th – 12th grade in Spring 2024.

Online Registration

Registration opens February 15, 2024.

Please visit the Summer Sessions website for more information.

Eligible applicants who successfully submit all requirements will be reviewed and notified via email of an admission decision within two weeks. Early application is strongly encouraged.

Supply List

Grip Gloves

Pair of Grip Gloves for lighting exercises. Your grip gloves must be heat resistant.

Examples of acceptable grip gloves:

  • Leather Grip Gloves
  • Ironclad Work Gloves
  • Heat Resistant Leather Gloves

Headlamps can be found for purchase at your local sporting goods storehardware storeTargetWal MartAmazon, or at many other online retailers. The make or model of the headlamp doesn’t matter, so long as it fits on your head and is easy to use.  

Clothing Requirements (required for working safely on soundstages):
  • Closed-toed shoes  
  • Pants that cover your whole leg 
Highly Recommended Items:
  • iPad/laptop to complete homework
  • Solid-State Drive (SSD) External Hard Drive w/ minimum 500GB Storage Capacity Connectivity/Interface: USB 3.0 or Thunderbolt.
    Examples of acceptable drives:

    • SAMSUNG SSD T7 Portable External Solid-State Drive 500GB, USB 3.2 Gen 2, MU-PC500T/AM
    • G-Technology 500GB G-DRIVE ev RaW SSD Portable External Storage with Removable Protective Rubber Bumper – USB 3.0 – 0G04755-1
  • The Following Apps Pre-Downloaded on your Tablet or Smart Phone:

Additional Details


Session A (July 7-July 13, 2024)
Session B (July 14-July 20, 2024)
Session C (July 28-August 3, 2024)
Session D (August 4-August 10, 2024)

Students are engaged in activities and classes along with breaks throughout the day from 9:00 a.m.-9:30 p.m. There will be evening classes / workshops that occur where students will be required to be present.

NOTE: All course meeting times are in Pacific Daylight Time (PDT). The program schedule is subject to change.

On-Campus (Mandatory Housing)

Due to the rigorous and intense nature of the program, the residential plan, which includes a meal plan, is mandatory for all on-campus participants. Participants will be housed in one of the UCLA residence halls, comfortably furnished and conveniently located within easy walking distance of classrooms, libraries, and recreational facilities.

Financial Aid

Qualified students attending grades 8th – 11th in Spring 2024 in the state of California may be eligible for Summer Scholars Support, a need- and merit-based scholarship offered by the UCLA Summer Sessions Office. A limited number of full and partial scholarships are available to support enrollment in SCIP/eSCIP, one Summer Course, or a Precollege Summer Institute. Summer 2024 deadline to apply: March 15.

Contact Summer Sessions

UCLA Summer Institutes
1332 Murphy Hall
Box 951418
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1418
Tel: (310) 825-4101
Fax: (310) 825-1528