Bachelor of Arts, Media Arts + Practice
The Bachelor of Arts in Media Arts + Practice (MA+P) is an interdisciplinary storytelling program combining the study of contemporary digital media with hands-on production and research. Students learn to conceptualize and create experiences across several different platforms: still images, text, audio, video, interactivity, web-based interfaces, social media, mobile environments and physical computing. They also study the history and theory of media forms to better understand how these diverse technologies can impact our culture. The curriculum focuses heavily on the exploration of emerging genres such as virtual reality, stereoscopy, transmedia storytelling and interactive performance.
MA+P students are artists, storytellers and designers, but they are also activists, scholars and technologists. The joint emphasis on theory and practice allows them to become critical makers: media producers who engage in analysis and critique alongside their creative process. Core critical themes include data visualization, social change, remix, public interactivity, design fiction and worldbuilding. Students also participate in individual and faculty-led design research activities.
- Knowledge of the history, theory and evolution of 20th and 21st century media and an understanding of their roles within contemporary culture.
- Understanding of foundational media competencies, including design and the relationship between form and content; networks and the ability to interact and participate in networked communities with sophistication; interactive argument, and the ability to use media to articulate a point or demonstrate a concept; and basic research skills, with an understanding of fair use and copyright issues in the digital context.
- Ability to apply critical theory in order to analyze, assess, critique and compare contemporary media objects and platforms.
- Ability to articulate ideas and concepts using written, oral, visual and interactive communication skills and an appreciation of emerging forms of textuality and digital scholarship that facilitate the sharing of ideas within scholarly networks.
- Develop skills necessary for successful digital authoring, including collaboration, the ability to learn new tools in a rapidly changing context and innovative entrepreneurship.
- Understanding of the legal and ethical rights and responsibilities associated in working with digital media.
- Appreciation of core cultural themes related to contemporary digital media, including access, surveillance and privacy, participation and global citizenship.
- Ability to apply digital media authoring skills in diverse contexts, including business, politics and education.
- Ability to synthesize learning in a major media-rich capstone project.
MA+P students are creative, inventive people who share strong critical thinking and reasoning skills, as well as a desire to explore new tools and platforms. They are interested in all aspects of media design and digital storytelling; many are also interested in using media to create positive change.
MA+P students are media savvy; they enjoy experimenting with video editing, web design and graphic design software. Those who do not have previous digital media experience are gifted visual artists and/or creative writers. What all of these students share is an excitement about the creative potential of emerging technologies, especially with regard to storytelling and narrative design.
Upon graduation, our students go on to become media designers and producers, digital artists, visual strategists, creative technologists or researchers in emergent technologies. They may choose to work in the entertainment industry (film and game production), the design industry (advertising and creative agencies) or the tech industry (product and user experience design). Some students may even become gallery artists or media scholars. In all cases, they are changemakers - they seek to change these industries through dynamic experimentation, technical innovation, and social and cultural activism.