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Cinema and Media Studies Major

The Program in Cinema and Media Studies is an interdisciplinary program in the Humanities that enables students to explore an influential global art form in its aesthetic, cultural, economic, historical, and technological dimensions. 

The undergraduate major in Cinema and Media Studies provides students with a solid background in theoretical, critical, and aesthetic aspects of the study of film, including the history of the medium and the analysis of national cinemas, always keeping in view questions of how cinema interacts with other media. The major brings together courses in cinema and media from varied nations, languages, and cultures and challenges students to understand the systems of transnational exchange that have characterized this medium from its inception. The major teaches the fundamental skills required for a range of professional careers: critical thinking, historical awareness, research, information management, cogent development of ideas, and strong written and oral communication.

Requirements for the Major

Degree Overview

1. a prerequisite course in Film Form (ENGL/FILM245),
2. a two-course Film History and Theory Foundation (ENGL/FILM301 and 302),
3. a six-course Film Criticism Core,
4. and four Film Electives.

The first two parts of the program assure that students have the necessary analytical tools and historical background to interpret diverse global cinematic traditions. The Film Criticism Core and Film Electives offer students the opportunity to explore genres, themes, and movements across different historical periods and to develop their skills in analysis, writing, and research. 

General Policies

1. The Cinema and Media Studies major requires 39 credits (13 courses).
2. A grade of C- or better is required in each of the courses making up the 39 credits of the major.
3. Up to nine (9) credits may be taken at the 200-level.
4. At least 6 of the 39 credits must be at the 400-level.

Required Credits

1. Film Form (3 credits)
ENGL 245/FILM 245
 Film Form and Culture (fulfills Gen Ed req. in Humanities)
Or SLLC 283/FILM 283: Introduction to Cinema Studies
Or equivalent by permission of department
Cinema and Media Studies majors must take FILM/ENGL 245 before they take other 300- or 400-level Cinema and Media Studies courses. We recommend that it be taken no later than sophomore year.

2. Film History and Theory Foundation (6 credits)
Prerequisite for both courses: ENGL 245/FILM 245 or SLLC 283/FILM 283.
FILM 301 Cinema History I: The Silent Era
FILM 302 Cinema History II: The Sound Era
Students may take the two courses in any order.

3. Film Criticism Core Requirement (18 credits), distributed as follows:
At least one course in this category must be taken at the 400-level.
A. One course (3 credits) in Film Theories
B. Two courses (6 credits) in Genres/Auteurs/Movements
C. Two courses (6 credits) in National and International Cinemas
D. One course (3 credits) in Documentary, Animation, Experimental Cinema or other Visual Media

4. Film Electives (12 credits)
Up to two courses in this category may be taken at the 200-level. At least one must be taken at the 400-level. Please consult the list of courses accepted for the Major.

Option One: 12 credits, distributed as follows:
A. Two courses (6 credits) from the Film Criticism category, any rubric
B. Two courses (6 credits) from the Film Electives category

Option Two: 12 credits
A. Four courses (12 credits) in Film Electives, selected to create a coherent emphasis. The four courses should be selected in consultation with the Cinema and Media Studies Advisor to allow students to explore a specific area of interest or an area related to their future academic or professional plans.

Program Director

Luka Arsenjuk

Associate Professor, School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
Associate Professor, Cinema and Media Studies
Affiliate, English

4120 Jiménez Hall
College Park MD, 20742