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The Cinema and Digital Media Major Program

The Cinema and Digital Media (CDM) program combines the study of audio-visual and digital media, theories about such media, and the relevant modes of artistic practice and production. CDM integrates the analysis of audio-visual and digital texts with their theoretical underpinnings and their methods of production. The program also addresses the particular impact that technology has on culture in its many forms and fields.

CDM faculty teach and research on various histories, theories, and practices of media. Current fields for teaching and research in cinema and digital media include the history and analysis of film and video, film and video production, electronic music, digital content creation and design, the digital arts, community media and activism, computer graphics, animation, and gaming—as well as the theories and politics of these various areas.

The Program. Preparatory course work involves a solid introduction to the history, ideas and current trends in cinema and digital media. For depth subject matter, students in the major select a combination of critical studies and creative production courses. Two courses will be selected from the production/programming distribution, two from the theory/history distribution and four will be elected by the student, allowing them to take up to six production courses or six studies/theory classes, should they so choose.

Career Alternatives. Cinema and Digital Media is designed to prepare graduates to be highly adaptable analytical thinkers, collaborative, multi-skilled and current with the latest developments in media and technology. Perhaps most importantly is self-motivation: students do best when fueled by their own passions and plot their own directions, while held to very high standards. We feel this is the best education for living and working in a complex, rapidly changing world. Final research papers and creative production portfolios will provide graduate school admissions committees, employers or clients with tangible evidence of Cinema and Digital Media graduates' track records and talents.
Course Changes. Cinema and Digital Media is working on updating all of the existing FMS, TCS, and CTS courses to the CDM course code. If you have any questions regarding the course code changes and equivalent major requirements please contact the Arts Group Advising Center at 530-752-0890.

The Film Studies Major Program

Major is closed to new students beginning 2015-2016.

Interested students are encouraged to explore the Film Studies minor which is open to new and current students, and the Cinema and Digital Media major which incorporates many of the courses previously offered through Film Studies.

The Program. The interdisciplinary major in Film Studies takes one of the most influential art forms of the twentieth century and today as its object of study. The field of Film Studies addresses the history, theory, and culture of this art form and asks questions about film texts themselves: modes of production (including everything from filmmakers' aesthetic choices to the role of the global economy); historical, national, and cultural contexts; and spectators and audiences. Questions of gender, race, sexuality, and nationality, in all of these areas, have been central to Film Studies almost since its inception and continue to shape much of the work in the field. While the program emphasizes film history, criticism, and theory, students also have opportunities to explore film/video production.

Students majoring in Film Studies take upper-division courses in film history and film theory, as well as in at least three of five general areas of study. Students also develop a thematic emphasis, in consultation with an adviser, that draws on courses from at least two different departments/programs and that allows them to pursue their particular interests within the field of Film Studies. Students have the option of completing a senior thesis (either a written paper or an original film/video) within this emphasis.

Career Alternatives. The A.B. degree in Film Studies prepares students for a variety of careers in media industries: for example, local and national film and television production companies, local television newsrooms, community television stations, computer graphic companies, advertising and marketing companies, public relations departments, and film distribution companies. Students wishing to pursue graduate work will be prepared to go on in film studies, as well as a variety of other fields that draw on interdisciplinary study: for example, American studies, English, literatures and languages, drama, communication, computer science, cultural studies, women and gender studies, and ethnic studies programs. Many film students also choose to go on to law school, and the analytical skills, writing abilities, and familiarity with theoretical thought developed through the film major prepare them well for the study and practice of law.

The Technocultural Studies Major Program

The Technocultural Studies major is an interdisciplinary integration of current research in cultural history and theory with innovative hands-on production in digital media and “low-tech.” It focuses on the fine and performing arts, media arts, community media, literature and cultural studies as they relate to technology and science. Backed by critical perspectives and the latest forms of research and production skills, students enjoy the mobility to explore individual research and expression, project-based collaboration and community engagement.

The Program

Preparatory course work involves a solid introduction to the history, ideas and current activities of technocultural studies. For depth subject matter, students in the major select to concentrate on either critical studies or creative production emphases, and work toward a final project. All majors are required to take at least one course from another department or program relevant to their area of study, upon approval from Technocultural Studies, and may take more courses with approval. The final project for the critical studies emphasis consists of a substantial research paper. The final project for the creative production emphasis will be a major individual or collaborative work. Plans for final projects must be approved in advance.

Career Paths. Technocultural Studies is designed to prepare graduates to be highly adaptable, collaborative, multi-skilled and current with the latest developments. Perhaps most importantly is self-motivation: students do best when fueled by their own passions and plot their own directions, while held to very high standards. We feel this is the best education for living and working in a complex, rapidly changing world. Final research papers and creative production portfolios will provide graduate school admissions committees, employers or clients with tangible evidence of Technocultural Studies graduates' track records and talents.

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Updated: March 22, 2017 10:38 AM