Tuesday, January 29, 2008



Course Description: Introduce the fundamental principles of filmed communication by closely examining techniques used throughout moving image history to construct meaning.

Course Objectives: Throughout the term, students will: 1) acquire an understanding of moving image techniques; 2) view and discuss works crucial to the medium’s history; 3) analyze formal and stylistic elements of moving images through writing; and 4) engage in discussions of aesthetic meaning or value. This is a designated Writing Intensive (WI) course.

Prerequisites: English 125 and CT201

Required Texts:
  • Giannetti, Louis. (2005). Understanding Movies (10th ed.). New Jersey: Prentice Hall.
  • Hacker, Diana. (2007). A Writer’s Reference. (6th ed.). New York: Bedford/St. Martin’s.
  • Text website: A companion website is available at Understanding Movies.
Course Requirements and Grading:

Writing Assignments (50%)This is a Writing Intensive (WI) course. Students are required to write two short essays of 3 pages (10% each) and one long essay of 8 – 10 pages (30%). To receive a passing grade on the long essay, students must: 1) submit a topic proposal and outline; 2) complete a draft; 3) participate in a class workshop AND complete a peer review; 4) submit an annotated bibliography; and 5) submit a final, revised essay. All essays must use APA style to document sources. Topics and detailed writing requirements will be given in class. See Course Schedule for due dates.

Online Reading Journal (10%) – Students will post 10 entries to the class website (URL above). Each entry must answer the posed question and be 7 – 10 sentences long. Online writing will be judged by the same criteria as printed work. Incomplete sentences, inadequate punctuation, poor grammar, etc. will not be accepted. All entries are due the following class day (see Course Schedule).

Storyboard (10%) – Students will script and storyboard a short scene of 10 – 15 shots. Storyboards will be presented to the class (see Course Schedule).

Exams (20%) – A midterm and a final exam will be given. Exams cannot be rescheduled. Missing an exam will result in a grade of zero.

Participation/Attendance (10%) – Students are expected to complete assigned readings and participate in class discussions, trips and film screenings. A student who is more than 15 minutes late to class will not be permitted to enter. More than two absences OR three tardy days will result in failure of the course.

Students must have an email account and be able to regularly access the class blog and text companion website. Students will occasionally be required to view clips outside of class. In these cases, films will be available in the Studio or as online clips. Students can access grades and class materials through York College Blackboard.

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