Miles Orvell, Director
The American Culture and Media Arts major combines faculty and courses from the American Studies program in the College of Liberal Arts and the Film and Media Arts Department in the School of Communications and Theater. Students can choose this major from either school. Majors will develop critical thinking skills relating to an understanding of the place of film, television, photography, and print media in our society. They will also develop skills in historical and contemporary research. Students graduating with the American Culture and Media Arts major can expect to pursue careers in media-related organizations, e.g. film, video, and radio production; archival and library positions; public relations jobs in media; museum research positions supporting exhibitions and media; writing about media for publications. Graduates can also pursue advanced training at the graduate level in documentary film production.
The program and its requirements are described in full in the Intercollegial
Programs section of this Bulletin.
The Department of Broadcasting, Telecommunications, and Mass Media provides programs of study in the production, management, institutions, and social processes of broadcasting, telecommunications, and other popular systems of communication. Students examine both the history and the emerging future of communication technologies. The Department emphasizes four interrelated areas of coursework:
3. Media Institutions-- history, economics, law, regulation, and policy pertaining to the broadcast, cable, and new technology industries.
4. Media and Social Processes -- the psychology, sociology, cultural analysis, and politics of the mass media, particularly in terms of their impact on everyday life.
Internships and Senior Seminar
Requirements for the Degree of Bachelor of Arts
2. School of Communications and Theater requirements. A maximum of 63 semester hours may be taken in the School of Communications and Theater.
3. BTMM requirements. The completion of a minimum of 40 semester hours and a maximum of 54 semester hours in BTMM. Each course taken to fulfill the minimum requirements must be completed with a grade of C- or better.
The following BTMM core courses must be taken during the student's first two years of majoring in BTMM:
Any course serving as a prerequisite must have been completed with a grade of C- or better. Prerequisites are noted in BTMM's course descriptions.
A minimum 2.5 average in BTMM courses and completion of 60 credits, including the BTMM core, must be attained before registering for Internship.
Only eight semester hours will be accepted from Physical Education or Kinesiology courses.
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COMMUNICATIONS AND THEATER
The Communications and Theater interdepartmental major is designed in the liberal arts tradition to give students in the School of Communications and Theater a broad exposure to all of the communications disciplines, as well as allowing for an in-depth focus in more than one specific area of study. The major can be completed at Ambler and Tokyo, but some non-required advanced courses in special areas of interest are offered only at the Main Campus. Students are encouraged to propose individual programs that take advantage of the Schoolís extensive course offerings.
Jobs in the communications industry are growing, and most SCAT graduates seek employment there. The Communications and Theater interdepartmental major also typically develops a broad range of interpersonal and mass media skills -- practical writing, oral skills, media production, and computer use. These are valuable to many careers in business, public service, and education, and many employers are looking for informed employees who understand communication processes. C & T majors can develop a suitable set of marketable skills for a broad range of such careers.
FILM AND MEDIA ARTS
Paul Swann, Chair
The Department of Film and Media Arts offers a Bachelor of Arts program in media production and theory. The program focuses on the development of creative and technical skills in film, video, audio, multi-media, computers and new technologies, and the theoretical understanding of media and culture. The program recognizes and explores the creative tension between individual expression and the social, political, and economic forces that shape culture at large.
Students will be trained in developing content as well as craft, theory as well as practice. In learning independent and commercial approaches to production and theory, graduates will be prepared to develop their own independent productions and/or to assume a creative role in the motion picture and television industries.
The department brings in guest media makers and visiting professors from diverse backgrounds for special lectures and workshops. Students may also select elective courses from other departments in the School of Communications and Theater in such areas as telecommunications, journalism, and theater. A highly recognized graduate program offers undergraduate students numerous opportunities to work on advanced productions and participate in advanced research in the field.
After taking the FMA basic courses in their freshman and sophomore years, students choose to enter one of three sequences: Production Thesis, Media Culture Thesis, or Non-Thesis.
Special Programs and Internships
Requirements for the Degree of Bachelor of Arts in Film and Media
Students may complete up to 12 additional credits in Film and Media Arts. The number of courses taken in the School of Communications and Theater is limited to 63 credits. A student must earn a C or better in all Film and Media Arts courses which count towards the degree.
Due to the highly competitive nature of this field, students with Film and Media Arts averages under 2.0 for more than two semesters will be encouraged to change their major. Students with averages under 2.0 may not begin the program. Students may take up to four of the 42 FMA credits as an internship.
Production Thesis Sequence
This sequence educates prospective film/video/media makers, media writers, and new technology practitioners to take creative control of their media. It emphasizes students' initiative in creating individual or collaborative projects that serve as an expression of their personal vision and voice.
The Production Thesis sequence builds to a two-semester senior capstone course in which each student, working with close faculty guidance, will finish a film, video, new technologies production and/or script, a production book, and a critical paper on the theoretical issues that informed his/her work. Media work must be presented publicly at an end of the year screening.
Students may enter this sequence if they earn a B average in the Basic Core sequence and a B average in Media Arts I and II, and if they continue to maintain a B average in the Film and Media Arts major. Completion of this sequence requires completion of Senior Projects I and II and is based on the grade requirements listed above, along with faculty acceptance of a Senior Project portfolio (which includes a proposal or script, and a work sample) submitted in March of the studentís junior year.
Jeanne Allen, Sequence Director
This sequence explores and explains how media works in American culture. The critical exploration of technology, economic and legal factors, social history, and institutions highlights the processes through which media culture affects identity construction and social change. Students who choose this sequence develop critical, analytical, and organizational skills in linking media culture to such arenas as community-based organizations and museums, schools, media resource centers, and the multicultural community of independent film and video producers.
The Media Culture Thesis sequence builds to a two-semester capstone course in which each student will complete a written research-based thesis on media culture criticism and/or history or a producible script for reality-based and researched media programming. Students may enter this sequence if they earn a B average in the Basic Core sequence and a B average in Introduction to Film and Video Analysis and The Production of Media Culture.
Students (including transfer students) who do not meet the above requirement may petition to enter this sequence based on a review of their written work. The petition must be received by the Media Culture Thesis Sequence Director no later than the third week of the semester prior to the semester when the student would be taking the senior thesis course.
Eran Preis, Sequence Director
This sequence is designed for students who wish a more general approach
to production and theory. Working closely with their advisers, students
will choose from a number of production and studies elective courses to
complete a balanced, liberal arts approach to media study in lieu of a
senior production thesis or media culture thesis. Students may progress
through the Non-Thesis Sequence if they have a 2.0 cumulative average
and grades of C or better in all the Basic Core courses.
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