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Course Descriptions

This is a sample of courses being developed for the Film and Media program.

LA 141
Introduction to Film

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs.
This course provides students with the tools to analyze moving image presentations in an academic setting or as a filmmaker. Students examine the uses of camera, editing, sound, and elements of the production design as they create meaning in film images and narratives. Examples are drawn from a full range of feature films, documentaries, and other forms of entertainment and advertising, whether delivered theatrically, through television or over the internet.

LA 242
Hollywood: A History

3 cr., 3 lec. hrs.
Students learn the history of the United States from the Civil War to the present through the lens of the American film industry. The course focuses on the economic structure of the film industry and the evolving depictions of violence in movies as a factor in American history.

LA 243
Introduction to Television Studies

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs.
This course analyzes the medium of television in terms of its history, narrative, style, technique, editing, sound, and representation. Students view programs from the 1950s to the present, marking and investigating TV’s transformations as it moves with and creates cultural history. Students acquire and use skills for reading television in terms of its production and signification.

LA 244
Documentary Film

3 cr., 2 lec., 2 lab. hrs.
Prerequisite: LA141 or EN255
This course provides an historical overview of the documentary form and a critique of ethnographic and propaganda films, social documentaries, cinema verite, and travelogues. Students investigate the issue of truth and/or objectivity, and critique films from the perspective of feminist theory, cultural anthropology and general film history and theory.

LA 246
The Science Fiction Film

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs.
This course examines the science fiction film from its beginnings. Students analyze the genre’s merits and flaws, conventional narrative themes and iconography, relevance, and fundamental departures from science fiction literature. They explore how science fiction films mirror the social and political environment of their time.

LA 251
Contemporary Korean Cinema

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs
This course is an introduction to South Korean cinema from the late 1980s to the present. Students study the concept of New Korean Cinema, the rise of the domestic film industry and auteurs, and the emergence of blockbusters and their growing regional and international recognition.

LA 342
Film Genres: Crime Stories

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs.
This course examines interrelationships in film and literature, focusing on “Crime Stories” – novels and cinematic adaptations that tell stories of crimes from differing points of view, beginning with the detective, moving toward the criminal and ending with the victims. Students study a variety of crime genres: the whodunit, the film noir, the docu-drama, the neo-noir and the meta-fiction.

LA 443
Major Directors: Alfred Hitchcock

3 cr., 2 lec., 2 lab. hrs.
This course provides an in-depth study of the films of Alfred Hitchcock, which are examined within the context of his life and the Hollywood system. Students learn the concepts of auteur theory by focusing on Hitchcock’s story-boarding method, his stylistic and cinematic technique, and his innovative use of editing and sound.

EN 259
French Cinema

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs.
Prerequisite: LA141
Students are introduced to the rich legacy of French Cinema, from its early days in silent film to Surrealism and Poetic Realism between World War I and World War II, to its position of influence with the New Wave in the 1960s. The political cinema of the 1970s is examined, as well as today’s new French filmmakers.

EN 266
Screenwriting I

3 cr., 3 lec. hrs.
Prerequisite: EN121
This course introduces the practice of writing fiction for the screen, focusing on the short film. In a workshop setting, students explore a range of approaches to the short screenplay, from traditional to innovative, and use examples from a variety of genres and geographical origins.

EN 281
Chinese Cinema

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs
Prerequisite: EN121
English Composition or equivalent Students are introduced to major film directors, movements, and genres from China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. They discuss and write critically about Chinese film, with close attention paid to the formal and stylistic aspects of film, and their historical, transnational, and socio-cultural contexts.

EN 366
Screenwriting II

3 cr., 3 lec. hrs.
Prerequisite: EN266 or approval of instructor
This course focuses on elements of screenwriting for feature-length films, including story concept, three-act structure, the world of the story, protagonist and antagonist, conflict, characterization, scene development, and dialogue. Students formulate individual projects, from pitching a story, to presenting a synopsis, preparing an outline, and writing a screenplay. The business end of screenwriting is discussed and students meet film industry professionals.

HA 217
Avant Garde Film

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs.
Prerequisites: HA112 or LA141
A survey of major moments in avant-garde film from 1895 to the present, this course contextualizes the films as exemplars of the art and literary movements with which they are associated. Students examine them as expressions of the historical and philosophical periods of their production.

HA 315
Ethnographic Film

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs.
Prerequisite: HA112
This course focuses on the history and nature of ethnographic film in describing and defining diverse world cultures. Topics addressed include the origins of ethnographic texts and images in the context of medieval European travel and trade, and the multiple genres of ethnographic films made from the 1920s to the present.

HA 333
Contemporary Photography and New Media

3 cr., 3 lec. hrs
Prerequisites: HA343 History of Photography or HA231 Modern Art
This course explores globally-produced photographic works made since the mid-1960s. Emphasis is on key themes and genres, and the works’ historical and theoretical contexts. In addition to conventional photography, the course covers “new media”, such as video, installations, projections, computer-assisted, and internet-hosting photography.

HA 343
History of Photography

3 cr., 3 lec. hrs.
A history of photography from its beginnings to the present day. Illustrated lectures present a chronological survey that focuses on photographers, technical advancements, and aesthetic considerations in the context of the history of art and design.

HA 347
Costume and Fashion in Film

3 cr., 2 lec./2 lab hrs.
This course surveys the history of costume design in films from 1895 to the present. Through screenings, museum visits, and readings, students view the work of leading costume and fashion designers and explore the connections between film and related visual art and media.  

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