Documentary Arts and Ethnographic Research Graduate Certificate

Learn the documentary practices, ethnographic methods and visual studies used to examine people and culture with the Documentary Arts and Ethnographic Research Graduate Certificate in Temple’s School of Theater, Film and Media Arts. Understand the diverse media tools used in film, and incorporate cross-cultural research, cultural aesthetics and research ethics in your work. This 12-credit graduate certificate is designed for Temple students who are passionately curious about the world around them and want to explore, understand and incorporate its diversity into their artistic and scholarly projects.

You’ll study

  • new media in documentary contexts, such as mobile media;
  • the political landscapes that shape how images are made, distributed and used worldwide;
  • the relationships between artistic, humanistic and scientific visual research methods; and
  • the use of visual media in indigenous, diaspora and non-Western communities.

You’ll take courses in the Center for the Performing and Cinematic Arts, the College of Liberal Arts, and the Klein College of Media and Communication, bridging arts, humanities and social sciences. You’ll also work closely with world-class faculty to both understand and interact with the world around you, developing theoretical and applicable skills and knowledge relevant for a wide array of career tracks.

This graduate certificate is only open to students enrolled in the MFA and PhD programs at Temple. Students complete the coursework on a part-time basis over three years.  

Classes & Curriculum

To earn the certificate, students must complete the following required and elective courses.

  • Advanced Documentary/Fiction Workshop
  • Anthropology of Mass Media
  • Approaches in the Anthropology of Visual Communication
  • Documentary Arts and Visual Research
  • Fieldwork in Ethnography
  • History of Photography
  • Videography

Learn more about the course requirements for the certificate program.

Related Graduate Degrees

Related Graduate Certificates

  • Arts in Community Graduate Certificate**

*College of Liberal Arts
**Tyler School of Art


With a certificate in Documentary Arts and Ethnographic Research comes great opportunity to pursue careers in film and media.

Some of the careers available to students who earn this certificate include

  • camera operator,
  • director of photography,
  • documentary sound designer,
  • ethnographic research interviewer,
  • film researcher,
  • producer and
  • writer.

Career Services

Temple University’s location in Philadelphia provides students with affordable access to a vibrant and active arts, film production and media scene, and it is in close proximity to New York City. Philadelphia has 19 TV stations and more than 60 movie houses. In addition, the city hosts multiple film festivals, and several feature films are shot here.

You will find multiple institutions offering opportunities or assistance in showcasing your work or advancing your career, including

Learn more about Philadelphia’s active film and media scene.

Tuition & Fees

In keeping with Temple’s commitment to access and affordability, this Graduate Certificate offers a competitive level of tuition with multiple opportunities for financial support.

Tuition rates are set annually by the university and are affected by multiple factors, including program degree level (undergraduate or graduate), course load (full- or part-time), in-state or out-of-state residency, and more. These tuition costs apply to the 2023–2024 academic year.

Pennsylvania resident: $1,169.00 per credit
Out-of-state: $1,565.00 per credit

You can view the full Cost of Attendance breakdown on the Student Financial Services website.


Additional Program Information