The predecessor of IMIS, The BKSTS was founded in London, England in 1931 to serve the growing film industry. As well as meetings, presentations, seminars, international exhibitions and conferences, the Society also organises a programme of training courses, lectures, workshops and special events. As craft skills and technology continually advance, the Society provides its members with opportunities to remain current with the latest techniques through master classes. Close links are forged and maintained with other like-minded organisations throughout the world. The Society publishes the unique Cinema Technology as a quarterly print journal.
The Society has a graded Membership scheme and which enables entry at any level of your profession. As well as Full Membership for craft or technologically working professionals, we have Associate Membership which is open to those with an interest in the industry and Student Membership for anyone who is engaged in full-time study on an Accredited course and is intent to progress to a career in the Moving Image industries.
The Society is represented through agents in Asia, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Egypt, France, India, Ireland, South Africa, Turkey and the USA.
The Society is passionate about quality and endeavours to ensure that the highest standards are maintained across content creation and delivery. This is achieved through the support of its sponsors, supporters and learned membership.
The Background of the Accreditation Scheme
Since 1984, the Society has provided formal recognition of relevant educational courses, as a way of building stronger links between the media industries and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). Accredited courses are seen by many organisations in the media industries as being relevant and as a source of potential employees. HEIs are helped by the closer links they have been able to establish with the Industry. Students are helped by the provision of realistic training and education, and involvement with companies in their chosen area of work. Media organisations are helped by having a clearer idea of the content and scope of the courses being offered and by having an opportunity to contribute to the course design, content and delivery.
Courses applying for Accreditation must already have been validated by an appropriate validating body, such as a degree-awarding institution, BTEC, or have been recognised by the National Council for Vocational Qualifications. For full accreditation, the course must have had at least one cohort graduate. For a course to be accredited, the content, standard, philosophy and approach of the course must be compatible with and be seen as being relevant to the needs of the media industries and the aims of the Society. It is important to media organisations that they know the type of education and training that potential employees will have received, and can rely on its standard. Society, as one of the leading media industry bodies, and being dedicated to the development of technical professionalism and excellence, is well placed to assess the realism of a course, and to recommend ways in which it can be strengthened.
The General Aims of the Accreditation Scheme
To recognise further and higher education courses within the UK and abroad that contain strong practical production and / or engineering vocational content, and produce students of a professionally employable standard.
To offer support to these courses in developing strategies towards ensuring the greater employability of their students.
To create cross institutional links between accredited courses, between students and staff on those courses, between them and media industry organisations.
To encourage membership of the society amongst students and young professionals so they are part of a wider network and group who keep in contact after graduation.
To provide opportunities for the students to keep in contact via focused online social networking and society events that will appeal to all members seeking employment, development, career advancement, updating and employment bridging.
Increasing the number of accredited courses.
Establishing a “mentoring” or “professional friend” relationship between individual members or committees of the Society and accredited course tutors and students.
Developing an annual diary of events for the accredited courses and the BKSTS that could include:
- An annual conference for second year students on accredited courses with workshop input on a number of themes followed by a social event for students and staff and industry professionals.
- An annual visit to each course by a member of the BKSTS to take part in one of a number of activities during their visit that could include:- a meeting of the course’s industry advisory board / a presentation to students or master class / industry careers advice / review of students work / staff meeting / or other course activity by mutual arrangement. Whilst there is no charge for the member’s time, any travel and / or overnight expenses are borne by the institution.
- An annual showcase screening of work from accredited courses in June or July of each year at a prestigious national venue ( BFI Southbank, Odeon Leicester Square, Pinewood, National Museum of Media ) and to develop this into a competition / festival format ?
Establishing an online social networking site or group for students on accredited courses and industry professionals who are Society members.
For accredited courses, and also Society membership, work with industry bodies, companies and manufactures organisations ( e.g. IABM) to develop sample projects, outline curriculum modules, training or events, in such themes as towards employability and bridging employment. i.e.
- Undergraduates developing high level personal and professional skills and having realistic aspirations for entry into the industry.
- Undergraduates being made aware of and being prepared for seeking employment opportunities in a wider spectrum of the industry other than just in the traditional attractive production, camera directorial creative roles etc.
- Undergraduates developing wider applicable IT skills within the context of the wider communication media industries.
- Addressing the science, technology, engineering and maths gaps in sixth form and undergraduate courses that is contributing to predicted shortfalls of graduates capable of securing employment in a wider spectrum of the industry other than just in the traditional attractive production, camera, directorial, creative roles
- To encourage undergraduates and their course to engage in more projects that involve cross discipline collaborative team production projects under realistic conditions.
To use the Society, its E&T Group, and the accreditation scheme to promote accredited course applications from overseas.
To promote some of the above issues at pre-degree level.
To seek out and work with interested partners, potential funders to achieve the above aims and objectives.