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Major In Media And Culture

Degree Requirement Summary (DRS)

The Media and Culture Major provides students the opportunity to gain a critical understanding of media forms and industry practices by engaging in creative production practice and analyzing creative, technological, and theoretical texts.  This unique program requires a business minor and encourages students to complete an internship or capstone project.  In their course work, students are exposed to a variety of creative and cultural texts and become critical thinkers and strong writers attuned to the nuances of written and visual language.  They gain a deep and comprehensive understanding of the social, cultural, and political impact of the media as they develop their knowledge of media practice in such areas as video and audio production, graphic and motion design, and writing for and about media forms.  Students learn to be creative, innovative and socially responsible media producers and business managers who can successfully navigate an increasingly diverse culture in the global marketplace.

Major Requirements

  • Four Media and Culture core courses, including one production elective
  • Four English and Media Studies Department electives, with an option to fulfill the fourth elective with a course in another department with the English and Media Studies Department chair’s approval
  •  A required business minor (See degree requirement summary)

The Four Core Courses:

MC 200 Principles of Media and Culture

This course provides a basic theoretical foundation for understanding how media industries, texts, and audiences interact. Focusing on the essential conceptual frameworks for analyzing the media, students learn how to become sophisticated analysts of media culture in multiple contexts. Because it seeks to emphasize media culture, the course also explores the relationships between and among producers, funders, distributors and consumers, particularly with respect to issues of class, race, gender, and ethnicity.

MC 220 Principles of Media Production

Serving as a foundation to media practice, this course offers a broad introduction to media production through hands-on exercises involving digital photography, video, and audio production, as well as graphic and sound design. Students explore various media formats and methods of distribution with an emphasis on the fundamentals of visual language and the creative process. The course provides an overarching framework for a study of media, emphasizing analysis and synthesis as projects evolve through conceptualization, visualization, production, and reception.

MC 250 Principles of Globalization and the Media

This course looks at international media industries, products and audiences to provide an introduction to a multinational and multi-ethnic culture. In addition to showing how international media are structured, the course focuses on how cultural and media products influence democracy internationally. Students consider the elements, interaction, and impact of media culture and mass communication in national and international arenas, with special attention to questions of ideology, political economy and global democracy.

Production Elective:

After speaking with an adviser, students must choose one of the following five production courses to complete their fourth core course requirement:

  • Design and Time-Based Media
  • Digital Photography
  •  Introduction to Video Production
  •  Making Documentaries 
  •  Sound Design for New Media

Labs and Studios

The Media and Culture Labs and Studio supports the major and is a state-of-the-art facility providing resources for all forms of media production: video, sound, digital photography and design. The labs house industry-standard software for video editing, screenwriting, sound mixing, animation, graphic and motion design, and DVD authoring. The professional production tools available include digital and HD cameras, microphones, audio accessories and lighting and grip equipment. A soundproofed studio with green screen and lighting grid complete the professional production environment.

Think you might like to major in Media and Culture?  Career options in the media industry are practically limitless. The Media and Culture major prepares students to enter fields that require both creative and business skills. Students in our program have interned for such companies as MTV Networks, Spike TV Digital, WGBH, Picture Park, Fox News, Charlesbridge Publishing, PlatformQ, CBS News, Martha Stewart Omnimedia, and the Cannes International Film Festival Internship Program offered by the American Pavilion, among others. For further career exploration, visit the Career Services web site.