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Parents + Educators


Our camps offer teens an exciting adventure in filmmaking. Registration for next summer will open in January 2020.

School Programmes

Interested in booking your secondary-school class for one of TIFF’s educational offerings? Choose from a range of half- and full-day hands-on workshops and screenings!

Higher Learning

A key initiative of TIFF is to mentor and advocate for post-secondary students, faculty, and emerging practitioners. Through panel discussions, lectures, and interviews with various creators and scholars, TIFF’s Higher Learning programme creates a forum to examine the moving image from a wide range of cultural, social, historical, political and technological approaches and disciplines.

Tickets to Higher Learning events are free. Individual students can reserve tickets in advance and group tickets can be requested by emailing

Past Events + Digital Resources

Check out the Higher Learning Digital Resource Hub for past events and supplementary research material.


Higher Learning is pleased to offer post-secondary students and faculty free guided tours of the TIFF Bell Lightbox facilities, TIFF’s Film Reference Library, and the Canadian Film Gallery (located on the 4th floor of TIFF Bell Lightbox).

Facilities Tour: This tour highlights some of the many curatorial, community-based and educational initiatives, and will include a brief history of TIFF as well as the architectural design of TIFF Bell Lightbox, which is located at the heart of the Entertainment District in Toronto.

Film Reference Library Tour: TIFF’s Film Reference Library is the ultimate resource for filmmakers, students, researchers, screenwriters and film and television professionals. One of our librarians will share highlights from our collection in a behind-the-scenes tour of the private stacks.

Exhibitions Tour: A tour of the Canadian Film Gallery, located on the 4th floor of TIFF Bell Lightbox, can also be arranged for students and faculty, when available.

Tours are available Tuesday through Friday, 9am–5pm.

If you would like to book a library, exhibition or facilities tour for you and your students, please contact Please indicate the size of your group as well your ideal schedule. Please do make sure to submit your request at least two weeks before your requested dates and we will do our best to accommodate you.

Grants + Scholarships


The Jeffrey and Sandra Lyons Canadian Film Scholarship

TIFF is a charitable cultural organization with a mission to transform the way people see the world through film. An extension of our initiatives is the Jeffrey and Sandra Lyons Canadian Film Scholarship for the development of scholarly contributions related to Canadian film.

The successful applicant is given a stipend of $1,000, a designated office space, and the opportunity to participate in Higher Learning programming. The Jeffrey and Sandra Lyons Canadian Film Scholarship is generously supported by the Jeffrey & Sandra Lyons Endowment Fund at TIFF.

Past Recipients
2017 – Mary Arnatt
2016 – Jeremy Mathers
2015 – Catherine Quantz



TIFF + ESPN Emerging Filmmaker Grant

TIFF and ESPN are pleased to announce Andrew Moir and Teyama Alkamli as the recipients of the TIFF + ESPN Emerging Filmmaker Grant for their project Hockey Mom, which follows the lives of Fatma and her seven-year-old son, Majed, after recently moving to Toronto from war-torn Syria. Told from Fatma’s point-of-view, Hockey Mom is an observational documentary about Majed’s first experience playing hockey and tells an empowering story of how this mother-son team conquered Canada. In partnership with ESPN, the grant was created in an effort to foster the next generation of filmmakers and to develop a short-form documentary that considers issues of social and cultural importance through the lens of sport and/or athletics. Moir, Alkamli, and their team will receive $25,000 to support the production of the film.

“The TIFF ESPN Filmmaker’s Grant has given us a unique freedom to really get to know our subjects on their terms. Fatma and Majed have welcomed us into their lives and we can’t wait to share their story with you.”
– Andrew Moir (director and producer) and Teyama Alkamli (producer)

Submissions were reviewed by a jury of media and sports professionals, including Aisha Jamal (Hot Docs programmer, filmmaker), David Amber (Host of Hockey Night in Canada, Sportsnet), Mandeq Hassan (filmmaker, former TIFF Next Wave Committee member), and Sean Menard (filmmaker, The Carter Effect).

Honourable Mentions

RIDE FOR PROMISE (Sherien Barsoum)

Former CFL prospect Curtis Carmichael embarks on a nation-wide adventure — cycling from Vancouver to Halifax — to challenge Canadians on their perceptions of racialized youth from marginalized communities. Ride for Promise follows an inspiring young man determined to flip the narrative on race, privilege, and poverty.

OPEN ICE (Lewis Gordon)

For 60 years, Moss Park Arena has been home to Canada’s only free youth hockey league. Located in one of Toronto’s poorest neighbourhoods, the league promotes accessibility for all. Open Ice explores the unique community that the league has built over the years and looks at its importance within the area.

WHITEWOLF (Andrea Cessna)

Whitewolf weaves together an Indigenous man's spirituality, identity, and lifelong passion for basketball. Where his journey began is as important as the destination he seeks. Michael Linklater, the top-ranked FIBA 3x3 player in North America, pursues his dream to represent Canada — and First Nations people — at the 2020 Olympics.

Discounted Industry Conference Passes
at TIFF and TIFF Kids

Geared towards inspiring both the current and next generation of content creators, TIFF’s Industry Conferences feature a diverse group of international experts who, through keynotes, panel discussions, and presentations, will focus on the creative process, financing, marketing, distribution, diversity in the industry and the future of content. University and college scholars, faculty, and students who are currently enrolled in, or are recent graduates of film, media, arts, animation, or broadcasting programmes, are eligible to receive a special rate to conference events as part of the Toronto International Film Festival in September as well as TIFF Kids in April.

To receive information about the Discounted Industry Conference Passes please subscribe to receive student or faculty e-newsletters. For more information on Industry Conference programming, please visit


Tickets + Membership

Tickets to Higher Learning:

Advance bookings for groups: Faculty members and administrators can reserve blocks of tickets for their classes. If you are interested in reserving a block of tickets, please send your request to, noting the event name in the subject heading.

Advance bookings for students: Individual students can reserve one (1) ticket in advance using the registration form found on the event page. Please note that you must use a valid post-secondary email address when booking your tickets.

Same day ticket availability: The remaining ticket inventory will be made available on a first-come, first- served basis as early as two-hours before the event start time. Tickets are limited to one per person and are available one hour before the event's start time at TIFF Bell Lightbox's Box Office, located at 350 King Street West.

Please note that you may be asked to present a college or university faculty/staff card when picking up your tickets.

Visit TIFF year-round:

Individuals with a valid student card are eligible for discounts on tickets throughout the year at TIFF Bell Lightbox and on Membership.

Join TIFF!

TIFF Members enjoy exclusive savings, pre-sales, access to the Bell Blue Room Members’ Lounge, special offers at local restaurants & shops, and more! Best of all: Anyone under the age of 25 can get a discounted Individual Membership for only $59! Find out more and join at

Reel Heritage

Launched in November 2014 as a joint initiative of TIFF Higher Learning and the Film Reference Library (FRL), Reel Heritage engages and educates audiences about the importance of the preservation of the film medium. Made possible through support from the Government of Canada and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, and TIFF’s community of donors and members, Reel Heritage brings post-secondary students together with film scholars, archivists, filmmakers and curators in a series of free educational sessions that examine the challenges and the opportunities facing moving-image collections in Ontario and beyond.

Past Reel Heritage Events

Reel Heritage: Film Archives and Scholarship

Featuring leading figures in the field of libraries, archives, film and new media, this panel discussion examined how moving image–based collections are utilized in the creation of new scholarship and media projects. Watch

Reel Heritage: The Materiality of Cinema

Media archivist Christina Stewart details the material history of the film medium, including the various tools of the motion-picture handlers. Watch

Reel Heritage: Rick Prelinger on The Future of Memory

Founder of the Prelinger Archives, Rick Prelinger delivered a lecture on the future of archives in the digital era and the innovations that cultural heritage institutions are experimenting with today. Watch

Reel Heritage: Film Ephemera and Collections Management

Film archive experts discussed curatorial strategies around moving-image–related artifacts and ephemera. Watch

Reel Heritage: Project and Protect

Expert guests shared the skills and best practices they have gained from their experiences in the projection booths of film festivals and art house cinemas in North America and beyond. Watch

Reel Heritage: Giovanna Fossati on Exploring Film Heritage

Giovanna Fossati, Chief Curator at the EYE Filmmuseum, discussed her extensive research in film preservation and heritage prior to a screening of rare silent short films. Watch

Reel Heritage: Bill Morrison on Dawson City: Frozen Time

Following a screening of Dawson City: Frozen Time, director Bill Morrison and film conservator Paul Gordon discussed the making of the documentary and the challenges of preserving and archiving film. Watch

Connecting Communities + Cultures:
The Vital Role of Libraries, Archives,
and Museums in the Arts

Libraries, archives and museums are vital hubs of activity that facilitate education and community building, and function as keepers of public memory. They collect, exhibit and make available heritage materials that catalyze imagination, cultivate knowledge and solidify our understanding of our shared cultural histories. Connecting Communities + Cultures: The Vital Role of Libraries, Archives, and Museums in the Arts is a two-day symposium as part of TIFF’s Reel Heritage initiative that offers professional development sessions for emerging librarians, archivists and students looking to enter the field.

Read about the 2017 Symposium

For more books and articles related to Reel Heritage in our Film Reference Library, view our Library Guide.

Community Initiatives

We collaborate with non-profit community organizations to develop film experiences that fit the needs, interests, and abilities of each group.

Through our community initiatives, TIFF works to ensure that opportunities for engagement and creative expression through film extend to people of all ages across the GTA. Request an off-site event in your community space designed in consultation with our team to ensure you get the film experience you’re looking for. We look forward to working with you.



Off-site screenings held in your community space to encourage dialogue, reflection, and connection to stories and content of relevance to your group. Screenings are curated in consultation and can be held in any space big enough to accommodate a screen! This experience includes a post-screening discussion moderated by TIFF staff and occasionally featuring film representatives as guest speakers.


Hands-on workshops are facilitated by local film artists and cover a wide range of creative topics, including: acting/improv, stop-motion animation, production design, DIY filmmaking, special-effects makeup, documentary film projects, and more! Workshops support collaboration, skill development, and the amplification of participant voices. While programming is adaptable, most workshops are better suited to groups of 20 participants or less. We offer single day and more long-term projects!

Come see us!

Group visits can be paired with an off-site activity in your community space or organized as standalone outings. Activities include but are not limited to: screenings of New Releases and film series titles, guided tours of the building, and an introduction to the Film Reference Library as a free resource for independent research and viewing.

Previous + Ongoing Collaborators

If you are a previous collaborator interested in booking a repeat program, please submit an email request to the relevant contact via the addresses listed below. The following are examples of past and current relationships:

  • Youth – Four Corners Health Centre, Applegrove Community Complex, Success Beyond Limits, Outburst Movement, Toronto Public Library, U for Change, RISE, Sketch, Davenport-Perth Neighbourhood and Community Health Centre and more!

  • Hospitals & mental health – Toronto General Hospital, St. Michael’s Hospital, Baycrest, St. Joseph’s Health Centre, Mount Sinai Hospital, Women’s College Hospital, IMPACT, CAMH Partial Hospital Program, STAR Learning Centre, Sheena’s Place

For more information about youth initiatives, contact:

Steph Guthrie

For more information about adult & mental health initiatives, contact:

Elysse Leonard
416.599.8433 x2246