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  • Media Studies Hero

    Media Studies (BA/BS)

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    Explore upcoming webinars and other events for prospective students.
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    Admission Contact
    Office of Undergraduate Admission
    72 Fifth Ave.
    New York, NY 10011
    212.229.5150 or 800.292.3040

    Program Contact
    Marcus Turner
    66 West 12th St., Room 9122
    New York, NY 10011
    212.229.5119 x3343

  • Earn a Bachelor of Arts in Media Studies in a program open to transfer students, adults, and other nontraditional undergraduates. The Media Studies major helps you gain conceptual, technical, and practical skills in media analysis, production, and management. Learn to think critically about the creation, distribution, and reception of historic and emergent media forms in a global context. The program is designed to prepare students for professional work in a range of media fields such as film, web, mobile, print, games, social media, marketing, and transmedia narrative.

    • Degree Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science
    • Credits 120 (up to 84 transfer credits)
    • Format Full-time or part-time, on campus (some classes available online)
    • Start Term Fall or Spring

    Interdisciplinary Curriculum

    The Media Studies program is distinguished by its interdisciplinary breadth and its commitment to creating media in the service of a more just and equitable world. Guided by a faculty of practicing professionals, award winners, and industry leaders, you may choose to complete a short film, write a feature screenplay, devise a business plan for a media startup, study the history of world cinema, or analyze the role of social media in a human rights campaign. Choose a concentration in Cinema Studies, Film Production, Media Entrepreneurship, Media and Social Change, Screenwriting, or design your own.

    Learn more about the curriculum

    Career Paths

    Media Studies graduates are prepared to begin careers as entrepreneurs, administrators, technicians, and artists in varied areas of the media industry. Career paths include camera technician (television and film), manager in a new media company, new media technology entrepreneur, independent filmmaker, film production assistant, advertising production manager, and marketing researcher. Students are also prepared to pursue graduate study in media studies or a related field, and may apply to continue their academic work at The New School through the MA in Media Studies and MS in Media Management.


  • Media Studies courses are taught by a distinguished faculty from diverse media industries. Students benefit from the professional insights that only leading media makers, producers, executives, brand marketers, and entrepreneurs can provide.

  • Featured Courses

    • In his 1977 book, Noise: The Political Economy of Music, Jacques Attali describes music as "a way of perceiving the world" that serves both communicative and organizing functions within societies. In comparison with other forms of discourse, which must often present credible evidence to support their claims, music seems to have a fairly simple appeal. In Bob Marley's words, "When it hits you, you feel okay." We examine the social organizing functions of music through a series of queries: Is music fuel for political action, a distraction, or both? How does it relate to local and national identities? What is a protest song (from Lennon to Public Enemy)? Is popular music organizing us not only socially but economically? Through readings of theorists from Theodor Adorno to Tricia Rose, consideration of artists like Public Enemy and Banda Macho of Mexico, and viewing of films like the cult classic Rockers, students explore questions like these to draw their own conclusions about just how much of our lives is dictated by the beat that goes on.

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    • NCOM 4301


      An exploration of the work of media industries and the complex of factors that make the business of media so distinctive. In what ways has the media business evolved in the past 25 years? How do emergent media business models compare with legacy media industries? What economic drivers steer the media economy? How do business and political interests influence the packaging and selling of news and entertainment media? Student address these and other questions while applying their insights to the analyses of specific media business case studies. We examine the dynamics of media by noticing how news, social media, and entertainment businesses are structured and the the cultural work they do. The course emphasizes the basic economics of the media business and the relationship between content and distribution in a market context. Readings, guest speakers, and creation of a hypothetical start-up provide students with a broad understanding of the current media environment.

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    • The course will provide an in-depth analysis of- and reflection upon- media images from across the broad spectrum of the industry: Hollywood cinema, independent film and the news media and how they influence society's perception of race, class, and gender issues. The course will highlight the diverse nature of these images from the perspectives of: social and political significance, stylistic influences and historical placement within the cultural context. Both contemporary and classic works will be screened, beginning with an examination of the dominant images of people of color portrayed in mainstream media. Some of the questions we will investigate include: where do these images originate? What are the underlying assumptions behind these images? What social function might these portrayals serve? Is race a social or biological construct? What are the social implications which perpetuate and are reinforced by an underlying worldview? What has been the influence or lack thereof of media from within these ethnicities and cultures on the Hollywood and independent industries? This course counts towards the Ethnicity and Race Minor.

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    • There are many skills involved with being a professional writer working in television because writers are also producers in TV. This class will cover the process from coming up with an idea for an episode to executing a producible script and an overview of the role of “writer/producer.” Students will learn the rules of a TV writers room; how to “break” (outline) an episode; the process of writing and re-writing both individually and as a group; and re-writing a script to make it producible on a budget. They will learn to take off their Writer's hat and put on their Producer's hat and rethink the script in terms of the budget and production realities (such as 8 days to shoot an entire episode, a limited number of cast and sets, etc.) The class can hear from various members of a crew about the different aspects of producing an episode of TV - Director, Cinematographer, Production Designer, Line Producer (who does the budgeting), and AD (Assistant Director who does the scheduling and runs the set). Students who take this class will leave it prepared to walk right into a TV writing job.

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    • The notion that technologies are drivers of social change is widely held, but the reality is far more complicated. In this course we will examine the relationship between technology and society, and between technology and culture, inquiring into the values and assumptions that shape them and the conflicts that they in turn give rise to. We will focus in particular on work that has emerged in the last quarter century on the impact of digital media technologies on social relations and on cultural debates. Topics range from how users interact with technologies to ideas of the posthuman, from the impact of the Internet on journalism to the changing nature of work, from how we construct relationships to the virtues of the virtual. Students have the option of writing a research paper or developing a research-based project.

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    • NFLM 3411


      The Art of Film lays the foundation for understanding the practical techniques, specialized language, and unique aesthetics of motion pictures. We will explore the expressive range of cinematic language and the ways in which complex emotions and ideas are communicated to the viewer. Students analyze the basic elements of cinematic form as seen through essential properties of the medium including editing, cinematography, production design, and sound design and gain an appreciation of film history and for the impact of culture and technology on the development of the cinema. The filmmaking process and the impact of the “industry” on this collaborative art are also studied. While the work of the director is only one aspect studied, we discuss various films by directors including Michelangelo Antonioni, Alfred Hitchcock, Yasujirō Ozu, Agnès Varda, and Orson Welles among many others. Supplemented by readings, students acquire a general familiarity with the range of cinematic expression and become better prepared to form surer and sounder judgments about our own film experiences and to speak and write about those judgments with greater clarity and skill.

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  • Relevance to the field is the most sought-after component of our program. Having instructors who are active professional practitioners makes it possible.

    Michelle Materre, Associate Professor of Media Studies and Film
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