About the Department of Media Study
What is Media Study? Students in the Department of Media Study elect to concentrate their studies in either Production or Critical Studies. The Department encourages interdisciplinary studies that lead students to investigate Media Study insofar as it relates to art, communications, music, linguistics, philosophy, or any number of other disciplines.

Is Media Study a journalism degree? The Department of Media Study has developed a curriculum that will encourage students to become independent filmmakers, video artists, digital artists, and theorists. Media Study is not a communications, TV broadcasting, or journalism program.

What do I study as a Media Study major? Students choose to concentrate in one of the following areas: Production or Critical Studies.

What are the two concentrations in Media Study?
1. Production: students take courses at the basic level and produce work in all three production areas: Film, Video, and Digital Arts. It is our philosophy that students should be exposed to multiple mediums to foster artistic talent and encourage ingenuity. Students in Media Study are thereby able to determine which production area best suits their interests as well as understand that no medium functions exclusively. A student interested in Film, for example, will want exposure to Digital Arts (for special effects or to present their work online): similarly, a student
in Digital Arts will want exposure to video (to incorporate video in web or virtual reality projects, for example). Students will continue to diversify at the intermediate level, and will focus on one area at the advanced level. Space is strictly limited in this concentration.

2. Critical Studies: Students take courses in history, analysis and theory which address the complex interrelationship between artistic practice and theoretical discourses. Concepts in film theory, digital media design, the role of the machine, semiotics, political theory and cultural studies are addressed through examination of works, critiques and theoretical texts. Students are required to take at least one basic production course to underscore the relationship between production and theory.

Can I do more than one concentration in Media Study? Students choose only ONE concentration, Production or Critical Studies. Students can elect to use their open elective credit in the major to pursue interests in the other media areas. The University also requires that students take 120 credit hours to graduate; should students choose to do so, they can take additional media study courses to count towards this university requirement. Note that another appealing aspect of UB’s Media Study at UB encourages students to explore the different media concentrations. As such, our students gain more production exposure, technique, and skill.

How Many credits do I have to take in Media Study? Students take a total of 48 credits for Critical Studies or 51 for Production in Media Study which is a total of 12 courses. Students are also required to have 18 credit hours (six classes) outside of the major, either in the form of a traditional minor or in the form of a virtual minor. UB requires 120 total credit hours, which includes degree requirements, gen eds, and open elective credit.

What is the Virtual Minor? The virtual minor, as we call it, exists only within the Department of Media Study. Students majoring in Media Study decide to do either a traditional minor in another discipline (English, Music, Theater, etc.), or to complete a virtual minor. The virtual minor consists of 18 credit hours (six classes) outside of Media Study that adhere to the following criteria: TWO courses must be at the 200 level, and FOUR courses must be at the 300-400 level. Transfer students can use transfer credit to put towards the virtual minor. The virtual minor should complement the Media Study degree, and students will have to make and argument for their selection of classes.

Do I have to have a Minor? Yes. Students majoring in Media Study have to decide upon either a minor or a virtual minor in order to graduate.

What do I take for my Media Study electives? Majors have two open electives in Media Study to complement their concentration- students should choose Media Study courses outside of their concentration requirements that appeal to their interests. For some this is an opportunity to explore other mediums-film, digital (including Robotics and internet-based multimedia), video, documentary, and interpretation.

What are some good introductory Media Study courses to take my freshman & sophomore year?

DMS 107, Film History I
DMS 108, Film History II (can be taken out of sequence) DMS 101, Basic Filmmaking
DMS 103, Basic Video
DMS 105, Basic Documentary
DMS 121, Basic Digital Arts or DMS 155 New Media
DMS 220, Machines, Codes and Culture
DMS 259, Intro to Media Analysis
DMS 213, Immigration & Film (American Pluralism)

Can undeclared/undecided majors take Media Study courses? Yes. Currently, the Department of Media Study allows non-majors and undecided majors to take most Media Study courses. Since students are not admitted to the department until they have completed 50 credit hours and three Media Study courses, the department does not discriminate by major for course registration.

What are “PI” courses? “PI” are Permission by Instructor ONLY courses. Students must contact the instructor or department for information. Most “PI” courses are advanced production courses that must be taken in a sequence and are for majors only. In most cases students will have to sign up for the
course with the instructor at least a semester in advance.

How do I take an internship? The Department of Media Study has a number of partnerships with companies, galleries, organizations, broadcasting stations, etc., and students can request a list of these organizations from the department. We also encourage students to explore their own internship opportunities.

How many credit hours do I sign up for with internship credit? Internship credits are based on the number of hours you work per week with the internship organization:

3.5 hours/ week=50 hours=1 credit hour
7 hours/week=100 hours=2 credit hours
10 hours/week=150 hours=3 credit hours
14 hours/week=200 hours=4 credit hours (maximum)
** Hours worked over 200 are for experience only.

How do I know that I’m ready to graduate with my B.A. in Media Study? Students need to schedule an appointment with the department advisor for graduation review. The advisor will review all of your Media Study courses and credit hours to determine whether or not you are ready for graduation. For gen ed advisement see a senior advisor located in 275 Park Hall.

What paperwork does UB require in order for me to graduate? All students need to apply for graduation through your “Students Center” via the HUB.

Students are encouraged to meet with the department’s undergraduate advisor every semester, preferably a week before your registration window opens.

Important Deadlines
February 22 for June conferral
July 15 for September conferral
October 15 for a February conferral