Mar 04, 2024  
2008-2009 Undergraduate Catalog 
2008-2009 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Cinema and Screen Studies

Bennet Schaber, Director
301 Poucher Hall

The Bachelor of Arts Degree in Cinema and Screen Studies is an interdisciplinary program designed to prepare students to become, through criticism and creation, active participants in and shapers of the culture and society of moving images. The major in Cinema and Screen Studies combines a rigorous course of study in the theory and history of moving images with an equally rigorous course of study in technical and creative production. The dual emphases of the program are designed to prepare students for a number of possible postgraduate options, ranging from media production to graduate study of theories and histories of visual culture.

Moving images increasingly belong to the very texture of our lives. The Cinema and Screen Studies program engages with this texture, examining the “big screen” of cinema to the “small screen” of television to the “new screens” of computers,ATMs, cellular phones, iPods, and the myriad other screens with which we regularly interface.As such, courses in the program are inherently interdisciplinary, touching on concerns across the humanities as well as the fields of business, education, political science, information technology and more.As virtually every career must engage with moving images in some form—marketing, public relations, organizational communications, education, etc.—the Cinema and Screen Studies program can augment traditional career preparation majors in fundamental ways. The major is in keeping with the University’s mission in that it “prepares graduates to live and work in a technologically sophisticated, culturally diverse world of changing opportunities”.

The major in Cinema and Screen Studies includes twelve courses divided into two components: core requirements, and a learning agreement. The core requirements are comprised of critical studies and production courses. The critical studies courses address histories and theories of moving images. The production courses focus on screenwriting and film and video making. The second component of the major is developed through a learning agreement that a student, guided by a faculty member, develops to give a particular emphasis to their course of study. This learning agreement is intended to help students take full advantage of the interdisciplinary elements of Cinema and Screen Studies. For example, a student might use this group of courses to fashion an emphasis in: acting and design, visual anthropology and documentary, computer animation, gender and visual culture, race and representation, media literacy/education, technology and society, digitality and informationscience, natural sciences and visual technologies, psychology and visual culture, physics of screen technologies, etc.

The completion of the learning agreement is marked by a one-credit capstone course that includes a public exhibition of a film or video project or a public reading and discussion of a research project or screenplay.