Media Course Descriptions

Media Courses:

CMTM 105: Introduction to Journalism

This survey course introduces students to the field of journalism, its basic concepts, processes and practices. It is intended as a guide to the workings of the journalism industry, including its various branches, the basis of news judgment, and the nature of journalism in the era of new media. Its hands-on approach is designed to provide a theoretical as well as “real world” understanding of the news and application of principles related to the production and dissemination of the news.


CMTM 160: The Art of Film and Video

Introduction to the creative foundations of film and video art by analyzing the way sight, sound, and motion are used to communicate ideas and emotions; lecture, demonstration, screening, discussion.


CMTM 165: Broadcasting and New Media

Introduction to the business and creative processes, structure, and function of American television and radio, emphasizing the production, distribution, and reception of news and information programming.


CMTM 205: Fundamentals of Media Writing

This course helps students solidify grammar and writing skills so they can ener the competitive field of media. It focuses on punctuation and spelling issues and introduces the “Bible” of the print media, The Associated Press Stylebook. Fundamentals of Media Writing picks up where the Introduction to Journalism, CMTM 105 leaves off, by moving students from talking about analyzing journalistic writing, to learning the basic tools to begin practicing the profession. The course serves as a skill-building foundation and prerequisite for the News Writing class, CMTM 367.


CMTM 208: Media Laboratory

Participation in various phases of production and management for either on-campus or off-campus radio, television, or film activities. Communication, Media, and Theatre majors may repeat this course once for laboratory credit towards graduation requirements. Requires consent of instructor.


CMTM 250: Introduction to Audio Production

This course introduces students to the process of audio production. The course also explores sound as an industry and an art form, as well as a tool of self-expression and of storytelling. Through a series of production exercises, working individually and in groups, the student becomes familiar with the process of audio production from concept to field recordings, to scripting and editing, to producing and mixing, and then to sharing the finished work with others.


CMTM 260: Introduction to Video Production

This class will introduce students to the principles and practices of digital video production, with an emphasis on single-camera field production and digital, non-linear editing. Aesthetics and conventions of television programs, independent/art videos, and documentaries will also be examined.


CMTM 265: Mass Media and Society

Development and problems of the media; the history, regulation, and social and economic implications of the media; American media systems and their relation to the media’s cultural content and function.


CMTM 310: Independent Study in Media

Individual investigation into a topic of the student’s choice.


CMTM 311: Fieldwork in Video Production

Academic credit (1-6cr.) for guided video production fieldwork. Reserved for students who have been invited to participate in documentary, narrative, experimental, commercial, or other relevant and typically off-campus field production opportunities. Student enrolls with media faculty who directs project and oversees student performance. Students will utilize research skills, apply principles learned in classroom, contribute meaningfully to a long-strand production, earn credit in a broadcast or higher-profile production, and explore career options. May be taken more than once, for a maximum of six credit hours. Prereq.: CMTM 260 and consent of instructor


CMTM 360: Advanced Video Production

This hands-on class will expand students’ understanding and application of the tools of video production. Student projects will primarily be individually produced, single-camera video programs. We will screen many examples of video works of a variety of genres and with an eye for the impact of the mode of transmission on the product. We will pay critical attention to audio for video, focus on the development of one’s own “voice,” and emphasize constructive criticism and revision. Prereq.: CMTM 260


CMTM 361: Digital Video Editing

This hands-on class will introduce students to the principles and practices of digital, non-linear video editing using Avid Media Composer software. Aesthetics and conventions of film/video cutting, history and theories of editing, and technical aspects of editing will be examined. Students will use sample footage to edit, present, and critique several projects and will edit a final piece using footage of their own choosing. Prereq.: CMTM 260 or consent of instructor


CMTM 362: Video Production Workshop

In this intensive hands-on class, students will produce TV news and feature “packages,” bumpers, and other material to form 2-4 episodes of the magazine-style, half-hour show Eye on Northeastern. We will work in small production teams, and students will write, direct, shoot, and edit their segments, rotating responsibilities. As a group we will screen and critique pieces produced in this class and others, create the finished shows from them, and organize and promote the screenings. Prereq.: CMTM 260


CMTM 363: Documentary Film

Historical survey of the international non-fiction film, including creative films, anthropological films, and television journalistic documentaries. Prereq.: CMTM 160 recommended


CMTM 364: Writing for Media (The Sitcom)

This revolving topics course provides exposure to a variety of writing topics and writing formats that will give students studying media the opportunity to develop in-depth written works in a workshop environment, with an emphasis on constructive criticism and revision. Consult the Schedule of Classes for specific topics.


CMTM 365: Contemporary Issues in Mass Media

Advanced study of the socio-psychological impact of the media upon contemporary society. Prereq.: CMTM 265


CMTM 366: Multimedia Storytelling

This course will involve writing for various media platforms with practice in the multi-media creation of original works; experience in writing forms and content typical of various media and criteria for evaluating written work; discussion of career opportunities. Prereq.: CMTM 250 or 260


CMTM 367: News Writing

This course will take students through the basics of news writing and reporting. The course will demand in-class writing assignments that will help students prioritize information and write with accuracy under deadline. Students will discuss and be tested on current affairs and evaluate a variety of news sources. Students will cover local events and generate story ideas. Prereq.: CMTM 205


CMTM 368: Community Media

This course will familiarize students with the important journalistic function uniquely served by community-based media, a function increasingly important in today’s media landscape of centrally produced content controlled by fewer and fewer owners focused primarily on the economic needs of those owners and the advertisers. This course will introduce students to different forms of community media - print, video, audio, and new technologies - and how these contribute to the building of community.


CMTM 370: Public Relations

Examination of the history, development, and practice of the public relations field with attention to the planning, implementation, and execution of public relations campaigns and the survey techniques and strategies used by public relations practitioners.


CMTM 371: History of American Cinema I

An investigation of the evolution of American narrative film history from its beginnings to the end of World War II. This course introduces students to the creative and technological developments in a given time period and exposes them to a variety of ways of analyzing American films. Films are investigated according to their historical, technological, aesthetic, and ideological significance as well as their genre placement. Prereq.: CMTM 160 or consent of instructor


CMTM 372: History of American Cinema II

An investigation of the evolution of American narrative film history from the end of World War II to the present. This course introduces students to the creative and technological developments in a given time period and exposes them to a variety of ways of analyzing American films. Films are investigated according to their historical, technological, aesthetic, and ideological significance as well as their genre placement. Prereq.: CMTM 160 or consent of instructor


CMTM 373: World Cinema

An examination of the major influential film movements and filmmakers from around the world and their impact on the language of cinema. This course is intended to develop an understanding of the evolution of narrative film history by analyzing films according to their historical, technological, aesthetic, and ideological significance. Prereq.: CMTM 160 or consent of instructor


CMTM 374: Studies in Film: (Horror Film, Film Genre, or Film Authorship)

This revolving topics course provides exposure to a variety of topics that will give students studying film the opportunity to engage in broader, as well as more in-depth investigations of the history, concepts, and theoretical approach to film studies and the body scholarship in this field. Consult the Schedule of Classes for specific topics. Prereq.: CMTM 160 or consent of instructor


CMTM 375: Contemporary Hispanic Cinema

An introduction to some of the major contemporary films and filmmakers from Spain and Latin American countries. This course will not only analyze the artistic merits of the films but also examine the social, economic, historical, and political context within which they were created and how their themes are related to national identity as well as international concerns. Prereq.: CMTM 160 or consent of instructor


CMTM 376: Television History

An overview of the cultural history of television from its origins in radio to cable and satellite communication, primarily in the U.S. but with some comparison to international contexts. Television programs are the primary focus and will be used to explore topics such as technology, regulation, audience measurement, commercial and educational/public broadcasting, advertising, and programming strategies.


CMTM 377: Gender and Media

This course looks at theories and instances of gender differences as they are articulated in mass-mediated popular culture that is targeted to particular genders: romance novels, soap operas, and melodrama will be contrasted with sports, film noir, and action films. Beginning with early feminist theories of representation, the course will follow theoretical developments that include race, sexual representation, and masculinity and will be especially concerned with theories of spectatorship and the gaze. Prereq.: CMTM 160 recommended


CMTM 378: New Media Technologies

This course explores emerging media technologies, including descriptions of the technologies, how their implementation affects existing media institutions, and social implications of the technologies. Emphasis is on historical perspectives on emerging media technologies in the global information society including digital audio-visual media, computers and consumer electronics, and various networking technologies. The course provides students with an understanding of the background, structure, functions, and current status for each technology. Emerging convergent media revolutionizing the global knowledge system will also be covered, including deregulatory policies, corporate mergers, and industrial restructuring.


CMTM 379: Media Law & Ethics

This course introduces students to the study of legal and ethical issues affecting U.S. mass media from journalistic and business perspectives. Specifically, the course will explore the legal and ethical responsibilities and rights of communicators and media professionals across various issues, including the First Amendment, defamation, privacy, newsgathering, regulation over media content, intellectual property rights, and regulation of electronic media and advertising industry. It will also help students think through media issues from a moral reasoning perspective by taking a variety of cases through an ethical framework.


CMTM 380: Revolving Topics in Television (Television Genres)

Television genres will cover a variety of scholarly approaches to the study of television programs. Genres can be studied for how they change over time, in response to cultural changes or economic exigencies. This course will take up theoretical questions of televisuality (the aesthetic conditions of the television text), and then focus on a number of particular genres. We will be primarily focusing on U.S. television, but there will be some attention to global questions, especially those of flow and format.


CMTM 383: Professional Internship 1

Professional activities in a selected field of media, performed and supervised at public or private facilities, corporations, businesses, agencies, etc. Application process required.


CMTM 384: Professional Internship 2

Professional activities in a selected field of media, performed and supervised at public or private facilities, corporations, businesses, agencies, etc. Application process required.


CMTM 385: Professional Internship 3

Professional activities in a selected field of media, performed and supervised at public or private facilities, corporations, businesses, agencies, etc. Application process required.


CMTM 410: Independent Study in Media

Individual investigation into selected topics in theory and practice of media. Independent studies require the approval of the instructor, Department Chair, and the appropriate College Dean(s).


CMTM 465: Mass Communication Theory

This course is designed to investigate the concepts, ideologies, and resulting scholarship that are relevant to the study of mass communication. Students will study a variety of mass communication theories and will critically evaluate the merits of these perspectives. Students will develop research projects to further interpret and utilize mass communication theories.


CMTM 466: Media and Cultural Studies

Students will explore foundational and contemporary material in the field of cultural studies and critical media studies. Students will understand and articulate how structures of power and inequality are present in culture and be able to critically analyze the way in which these structures of power materialize in media texts and industrial formations.


CMTM 467: Special Topics in Film and Television (Rotating Topics)

This special topics course provides graduate students an opportunity to explore historical and theoretical approaches specific to studies of film and television. Special topics may include film history and theory, television history, national cinemas, genres, industrial technologies and trends, and issues of representation such as race, class, and gender. Examples include “Reality Television” and “Race, Ethnicity, and American Cinema.”


CMTM 478: Seminar in New Media

This course is an opportunity to explore critical approaches to “new media” through historical and theoretical readings. It intends to provide students with a better understanding of debates surrounding contemporary digital media while also giving them the ability to frame these debates within appropriate historical and cultural contexts.