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Undergraduate Bulletin 2007-2008
 
Bulletin Homepage |College of Arts & Sciences | Bulletin Information

Documentary Studies Program


Faculty

Gerald Zahavi, Ph.D. (Professor, History), Director of Documentary Studies

Phyllis Galembo, M.F.A. (Professor, Art)

Robert Gluck, M.H.L., M.S.W., M.F.A.  (Assistant Professor, Music)

Daniel S. Goodwin, M.F.A. (Associate Professor, Art)

Teresa M. Harrison, Ph.D. (Professor, Communication)

William Husson, Ph.D. (Visiting Assistant Professor, Communication)

Yvettte Mattern, M.F.A. (Assistant Professor, Joint/Art and Music)

William Rainbolt, Ph.D. (Associate Professor, Director of the Journalism Program)

Ray Sapirstein (Assistant Professor, History)


Degree Requirements for the Faculty-Initiated Interdisciplinary Major with a Concentration in Documentary Studies

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.): A minimum of 36 credits, distributed in the following way:

Required Core Course

A Doc 251 Introduction to Documentary Studies (3)

Theory and Foundation Courses:

Two (2) courses, chosen from the following. (6 credits). Most of the courses listed below are offered every year.

A Arh 265 History of Photography
A Com 238 Introduction to Mass Communication
A Com 370 Theories of Mass Media
A Com 378 Introduction to Semiotics
A Com 465 Politics of Media
A Jrl 475 Topics Course in Documentary Traditions in Prose and Photography
A Jrl 475 Topics Course in Documentary Film: History and Criticism/A History of the Visual Documentary

Concentrations: Two  courses in any two documentary concentrations; students must select two (2) courses within each of the two concentrations they choose. (12 credits). Note that some courses are listed under two categories. Most courses are offered every year.

Nonfiction Writing and Print Journalism

A Eng 220Z Expository Writing (3)
A Jrl 220Z Beginning Reporting and News Writing
A Jrl 308Z Narrative and Descriptive Journalism
A Jrl 475 Topics course in Documentary Script Writing

Photography

A Art 244 Beginning Photography
A Arh 265 History of Photography
A Jrl 380 Photojournalism

Non-Fiction Film/Video

A Art 346 Introductory Film Production
A Com 378Z Persuasion and Film
A His 390 Readings and Practicum in Historical Film and Video Documentary Production. (To be offered in 2006; course number may differ.)

* Additional non-fiction film courses are offered from time to time in various U-Albany departments—as well as through Film Studies. These may also be taken, with permission, to fulfill the concentration requirements.

Radio/Audio

A Com 378 Radio and the Public Imagination
A His 390 Producing Historical Documentaries and Features for Radio
A His 394 Readings and Practicum in Oral and Video History
A Mus 295 Introduction to Audio Recording
A Mus 325 Introduction to Electronic Music
A Mus 426/526 Studio Work in Electronic Music and Media
A Mus 428/528 Sound Design and Multi-media

Multimedia/Hypermedia

A Art 250 Introduction to Digital Imaging
A Art 350 Intermediate Digital Imaging
A Art 450 Advanced Digital Imaging
A Com 465Z Communicating on the Internet
A His 390 (section xxxx). Workshop in Digital History
A Jrl 390Z Digital Media Workshop I: Web Publishing
A Jrl 392Z Digital Media Workshop II: Desktop Publishing
A Jrl 490Z Online Magazine Workshop: Web Magazine Workshop
A Mus 428/528 Sound Design and Multi-media

Documentary Studies Fieldwork Seminar

(3 credits / 4 credits if taken with A Doc 451 for Honors credit):

A Doc 450 (new course). Senior Seminar and Practicum in Documentary Studies
A Doc 451 (new course) Honors Seminar and Practicum in Documentary Studies

Electives:

Taken from any of those listed below. Courses should not repeat any taken to fulfill the two core concentration requirements above. One independent study course relevant to the student’s area/s of concentration may be substituted for one of the electives. (12 credits). Most of these courses are offered yearly; some, bi-annually. Other courses not listed here may be included with the approval of the Director.


Art:

A Art 244 Beginning Photography
A Art 250 Introduction to Digital Imaging
A Art 344 Intermediate Photography
A Art 346 Introductory Film Production
A Art 348 Color Photography
A Art 350 Intermediate Digital Imaging
A Art 444 Advanced Photography
A Art 446 Topics in Photography
A Art 447 Advanced Film Production
A Art 450 Advanced Digital Imaging

Art History:

A Arh 261 Independent Cinema
A Arh 265 History of Photography
A Arh 266 Photography: 1970 to the Present

Communication Courses:

A Com 238 Introduction to Mass Communication
A Com 345Z Argumentative Methods
A Com 370 Theories of Mass Media
A Com 378 Introduction to Semiotics
A Com 465 Politics of Media
A Com 465Z Communicating on the Internet

History:

Note: History 390 is currently a multi-section course, with each section number associated with different topics and titles. In the future, each section will probably have a separate course number.]

A His 390 (section xxxx). Producing Historical Documentaries and Features for Radio
A His 390 (section xxxx). Workshop in Digital History
A His 390 (section xxxx). Readings and Practicum in Historical Film and Video Documentary Production
A His 394 Workshop in Oral History
A His 499Q Special Projects in History and Media

Journalism:

A Jrl 308Z Narrative and Descriptive
A  Jrl 364 & A Jrl 365: Special Topics Courses
A Jrl 350Y Journalistic Interviewing
A Jrl 380 Photojournalism
A Jrl 385 Broadcast Journalism
A Jrl 390Z Digital Media Workshop I: Web Publishing
A Jrl 392Z Digital Media Workshop II: Desktop Publishing
A Jrl 475 Topics course in Documentary Writing for Print
A Jrl 475 Topics course in Documentary Script Writing
A Jrl 475 Topics Course in Documentary Traditions in Prose and Photography
A Jrl 490Z  E-Zine: Online Magazine Workshop

Additional courses offered intermittently include the following, many of which are very appropriate for documentary work:

"Media Law and Ethics" examines the current state of media law and ethics, with some attention also given to the historical roots. Topics covered by the course include: First Amendment, conflicts between the values of a free press and a fair trial, libel, invasion of privacy, protection of confidential sources and information, freedom of information, copyright, telecommunications, and ethical dilemmas.

"The American News Media in the Twentieth Century" is a lecture course surveying the historical development of radio, television, newspapers and magazines, and digital media in the 20th century. To a lesser extent, it also addresses films, book publishing, public relations, and advertising.

"Environmental Journalism" is a reporting and writing workshop that examines a wide variety of issues in media coverage of such subjects as nuclear waste disposal, alternative fuels research, global warming, saving endangered areas and species, and "nimby" (not-in-my-backyard) controversies. It is intended for students in Journalism and Earth & Atmospheric Sciences but open to anyone with an interest in the subject.

"Science Journalism" is a workshop that introduces students to reporting on, and writing about, a variety of current issues in science, medicine, technology, and the environment.

A Jrl 495 Journalism Internship
A Jrl 497 Independent Study

Music:

A Mus 295 Introduction to Audio Recording
A Mus 325 Introduction to Electronic Music
A Mus 426/526 Studio Work in Electronic Music and Media [formerly Creative Work in Electronic Music]
A Mus 428/528 Sound Design and Multi-media. (Cross-listed with Art, Theater; formerly Computer Applications in Music II)

Supporting Topical Academic Courses: Students are strongly encouraged to select minors and supplementary courses supportive of their topical or subject areas of documentary interest. Those students who are attracted to international documentary work should consider history, foreign language, anthropology, globalization, political science, and sociology courses. Those interested in science and technology as a subject area of future documentary work, should take science and technology courses supportive of this concentration. Those drawn to biography and humanities topics should look at the offerings of the English department. All students should discuss their topical interests with their advisers and build a substantive base in one or more disciplines.

Degree Requirements for the Honors Curriculum in Documentary Studies

The Honors Curriculum in Documentary Studies allows students to take on a program that is especially intellectually rigorous and that yields a final project more substantial than that required of non-Honors students. Special 1-credit supplementary sections provide students in the Honors Program with deeper, broader, and more challenging opportunities to probe the diverse approaches to documentary production—in this country and abroad. They encourage a high level of student-faculty interaction and the cultivation of an honors community.

Requirements:

Students should complete a minimum of 56 credits in courses for which they registered at this university. These should include a minimum of 40 University at Albany credits graded on the A-E basis.

Completion of the core 36-credit requirement of the Faculty Initiated Major in Documentary Studies and an additional 4 credits as outlined below for a total of 40 credits.

Twelve (12) credits of honors work, usually fulfilled by A Doc 450 and 451, and taking two 3-credit upper division courses in conjunction with A Doc 400 (Honors Tutorial in Documentary Studies), a course that may be repeated for credit. Honors students enrolled in any of the 300-level courses or above outlined under Documentary Studies “Theory and Foundation” or “Elective” courses (listed earlier)—and also enrolled for A Doc 400 will be expected to complete the same assignments as those enrolled in the 300-level courses. However, they will earn an additional credit through the A Doc 400 tutorial. The tutorial will permit Honors students to work one-on-one with the instructors teaching these courses and will normally include extra reading, writing, and project assignments.

Maintenance of a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.25. For graduation with an “Honors in Documentary Studies,” students must also have achieved a grade point average of 3.5 or above in their major.

All students enrolled in the Honors Program will take (in addition to the required A Doc 251 and Doc 450) A Doc 451, Honors Seminar and Practicum in Documentary Studies (1 credit).

Students in the Honors Curriculum in Documentary Studies will be expected to produce a more substantial final project in A Doc 450 than non-Honors students enrolled in that course. A Doc 451, the supplementary 1-credit course paralleling A Doc 450, will provide them with the opportunity and guidance to expand their projects accordingly.

Honors students must present their final projects at a public seminar.

Honors Curriculum Admission

Majors should discuss admission to the Honors Curriculum in Documentary Studies with the Documentary Studies Director at any time during their first or second year or at the beginning of their third year. Transfer students should apply upon their admission to the University. The requirements for admission include:

Overall cumulative grade point average of 3.25.

Completion of at least 12 credits required for the Documentary Studies major.

A grade point average of 3.50 in courses required for the Documentary Studies major.


Advisement

The Director of the Faculty-Initiated Major and Minor in Documentary Studies is the initial and primary adviser for enrolled students. The Director will normally help students identify faculty members in the participating departments closest to their documentary area of interest for more intensive and focused advisement. A list of key contact faculty and their various documentary sub-field concentrations will be generated during the first year of the program; it will be periodically updated.