Barbara Schock

Associate Arts Professor

Photo of Chairperson Barbara Schock

Barbara Schock, a Tisch School of the Arts Associate Arts Professor, is an Oscar-winning independent filmmaker/director who has taught for the Graduate Film program since 2011. She was Chair of the program for seven years before stepping down in Spring 2021.

Schock is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and sits on the Academy’s Executive Committee for Short Films and Feature Animation.

Schock was the Vice President of Production at Silverfilm Productions in Manhattan, where she oversaw the development of screenplays from Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage and novelist Alan Furst. She was the assistant to David Fincher when he directed ALIEN 3 in London for 20th Century Fox. She also was the assistant to producer Michael Nozik on TriStar’s THUNDERHEART, directed by Michael Apted. Early in her career, Schock produced two independent features, one for Island Pictures.

In 1998, she directed her AFI thesis film, My Mother Dreams the Satan’s Disciples in New York, written by Rex Pickett (author of SIDEWAYS), which earned the 2000 Academy Award® for Best Short Film (Live Action). The film won over 15 awards from various festivals and organizations, including the DGA’s prestigious Ida Lupino Award.

Schock has 14 years of experience teaching and holding administrative positions in graduate film programs. Before her appointment as Chair, she served as Head of Directing, Head of Acting, Interim Head of Interdisciplinary Collaborations and as Interim Chair for the Graduate Film program. Prior to coming to New York, she taught at Tisch Asia in Singapore for three years, overseeing the writing curriculum and second-year studies. She is known for developing strong writing, directing, and directing the actor curricula. She previously taught at Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film, and has guest lectured at Cal Arts and throughout Europe. She is a contributor to Filmmaker magazine. She was a student of the late legendary film critic and painter Manny Farber, whom she credits as her foremost influence. She is currently on sabbatical preparing a feature film to direct in her home state of South Dakota.


Directing I, Directing II, Directing III, Director’s Cut

Directing the Actor I, Directing the Actor II



B.A., English Literature,
University of California at San Diego

M.F.A., Film Directing, American Film Institute