Media Studies is an interdisciplinary field that explores the histories, technologies and social and cultural contexts of a range of contemporary media forms, including mechanical and electronic media such as film, video, television, print and the Internet as well as other contemporary forms of culture. Media Studies at The Claremont Colleges presents students with an integrated approach to media production and the critical study of the media, seeking to understand the present state of media practices through an examination of their historical and technological development, an analysis of their genres and a rigorous investigation of the theoretical approaches that have been brought both to the creative practices of media producers and the critical practices used by contemporary scholars.
Production is a key element of the Media Studies major, but the mode of production studied at The Claremont Colleges is not oriented toward traditional narrative film or television, or toward commercial models of new media; rather, this major stresses "independent" narrative forms, documentary, video and digital art and community-based media practice, seeking to confront not only the ways that the media construct the contemporary cultural environment, but also the ways in which we as producers and consumers are all constituted by the same cultural formations that we seek to challenge. Above all, the major seeks to explore the media from a perspective that eliminates the traditional boundaries between disciplines and between media theory and media production, thus illuminating new ways of seeing, thinking and communicating in the world.
Pitzer Advisers: A. Juhasz, G. Lamb, J. Lerner, M-Y. Ma, R. Talmor.
Major: The Media Studies major requires the completion of 11 courses, with a concentration in Film/Video, Digital/Electronic Media, or Critical Studies. All Media Studies majors will complete the following courses. Courses listed as fulfilling each requirement are subject to change and other courses may be counted toward those requirements with approval of the Curriculum Committee.
Minor: A minor in Media Studies requires completion of six graded courses.
Combined Major: For combined majors, one introductory critical/theoretical Media Studies course, one production course, one media theory course, the Senior Seminar and four additional Media Studies courses are required. The combined major must reflect a coherent integration of the two fields.
Art/Media Studies Combined Major: A combined major in Art and Media Studies requires: seven (7) Media Studies courses (one introductory critical/theoretical Media Studies course; one introductory production course; one media theory course; one media history course; and three additional electives); six (6) Studio Art courses in at least three different media, and two Art History courses. Up to two courses can count for both fields if approved by the student's major advisers. In addition, students should take both Capstone courses (Senior Projects in Art and Senior Seminar in Media Studies) or can choose to substitute an independent study for one Capstone course as approved by major advisers.
Double Major: Students must complete the requirements for both majors, including any theses or honors requirements. Normally, no more than two courses can be counted to fulfill the requirements in both fields.
Honors: Media Studies majors with at least a 3.5 cumulative GPA will be invited to have their senior project or thesis evaluated for honors. Students whose senior project receives a grade of "A" will be recommended to the Media Studies Field Group for honors.
Media Studies Production Center
Students in production courses have access to equipment for course work. The Production Center provides digital camcorders, 16mm and Super 8 film cameras, microphones, lights and other production equipment. Post-production facilities include Final Cut Pro digital editing systems and basic film editing equipment. All courses are not offered each academic year. Please check appropriate catalog for precise offerings.