See below for descriptions of five required MA courses:
I. FILM R 6160 Pro-Seminar in Historiography - Semester One (Fall)
II. FILM R 6130 Pro-Seminar in Film Theory - Semester Two (Spring)
III. FILM R 4012 Introduction to Cinema and New Media - Semester Two (Spring)
IV. FILM R 8990 Thesis Prep Seminar - Semester Three (Fall)
V. FILM R 9001 Graduate Thesis Research - Semester Three (Fall)
Students take 30 credits of coursework over three semesters (full-time) or five semesters (part-time). See below for Residency requirements. List of suggested elective courses from Columbia Arts and Sciences departments posted every semester.
Masters Thesis: In the third semester, students will complete a 50-page written work of original scholarship on a topic chosen in consultation with the faculty.
Eligibility: The Master's Degree in Film Studies is designed for students who have already completed significant undergraduate or graduate work in the study of film or associated fields. Note: Students in the MA Program in Film Studies are not eligible to enroll in directing, screenwriting or film production classes.
Residency: All Masters of Film Studies candidates who have completed 30 credits of coursework and have not completed the degree requirements may register for one additional semester of MA Extended Residence. Students must complete all course and degree requirements in no more than three semesters (full-time) or five semesters (part-time). Any extensions to these deadlines (a) must be approved, in advance, by the program head and (b) may carry additional fees. For changes to these requirements, or for more specific information, please contact the School of the Arts Admissions Office at email@example.com.
Required MA Courses
Semester One (Fall)
I. Pro-Seminar in Historiography: An introduction to issues and cases in the study of cinema century technologies. This class takes up the definition of the historiographic problem and the differences between theoretical and empirical solutions. Specific units on the history of film style, genre as opposed to authorship, silent and sound cinemas, the American avant-garde, national cinemas (Russia and China), the political economy of world cinema, and archival poetics. A unit on research methods taught in conjunction with Butler Library staff. Writing exercises on a weekly basis culminate in a digital historiography research "map" which becomes the basis of a final paper.
Semester Two (Spring)
II. Pro-Seminar in Film Theory: Begins with a general overview of current developments in film theory-issues, for example, related to cultural studies, the emergence of new media, Asian film theory, new formulations of film spectatorship and then proceeds to a close examination of one or two contemporary issues in film theory. Close readings of selected texts, with frequent in-class presentations of material by the students themselves.
III. Introduction to Cinema and New Media: An advanced introduction to theories of media, technology and culture as they relate to the study of cinema, focusing in particular on cinema in the age of “new media” or computer technologies. Film studies has tended to take the projected live-action narrative feature film as its object, but increasingly new forms of technology are transforming the way we perceive and interact with moving images. Survey of central concepts and major theoretical debates associated with cinema in relation to new media, putting these debates in the context of film’s relation to other now older media such as photography, television and home video. Topics will include: indexicality in relation to digital technology, remediation, the virtual, information theory, convergence culture, software studies, digital animation and special effects, gaming and interactivity and YouTube.
Semester Three (Fall)
The final semester of study for MA Film Studies students is dedicated to researching and writing the Master's Thesis. Students may not enroll for additional course work during this final term as they are expected to work full-time on their thesis project.
IV. Thesis Prep Seminar: The third semester of the program is devoted to the writing of a Master's Thesis on a topic approved by faculty. In this course students present their works-in-progress and receive commentary and criticism.
V. Graduate Thesis Research: Students register for this course to receive academic credit for the research done for the thesis project.