Digital Media Arts

Four-year plan
Course descriptions

Joseph Faura, Coordinator

The Digital Media Arts program in the School of Arts and Sciences offers a major and minor to students in the Women’s College. The program provides a solid foundation in technology, a rich creative background in the arts and the communication skills necessary to convey ideas in the digital realm.

The curriculum of the major is interdisciplinary, including courses in art, computer studies and communication arts. As the arts, the world of media, and the business environment are increasingly dependent on digital communication competencies, the digital media arts program will prepare students for positions with these employers.

The graduate in digital media arts will be able to: create effective visual communications strategies that could assist individuals and businesses; use technology to address visual communication challenges; analyze the historical impact design and visual communications have had on our culture; evaluate the moral and ethical issues related to visual media, art, and technology; apply formal design principles to solve visual communication problems; and work effectively as an individual and as a member of a creative team.

Students are strongly encouraged to enroll in PHL-320 Aesthetics or PHL-334 Business Ethics to complement their program of study and meet general education requirements.

Students will complete much of their work in the campus digital media lab, equipped with Macintosh computers and software. The campus video, art and photography studios also support instruction in this program.

As the culminating experience in the major, students complete a practicum in the form of an intensive, advanced internship. During the spring of their senior year, they are placed in an entry-level position in an area business in order to refine their professional competencies as they prepare to begin their careers.

Students must earn a minimum GPA of 3.0 in all major courses taken to fulfill the requirements of the digital media arts major. ART 101 and ART 102 should be taken as early as possible in the student's program of study, ideally concurrent with DMA-101.

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Required Courses for a Major in Digital Media Arts (33–42 Credits)

Visual Core (15 credits)

DMA-101 Graphic Design I (3)
ART-101 Drawing 1 (3)
ART-102 Color and Design (3)
ART-162 Digital Photography (3)
DMA-201 Time-Based Media (3)

Media Studies (6 credits)

COM-210 Social Media (3)
COM-310 Media Literacy (3)

Web and Animation (9 credits)

CST-261 Web Page Design (3)
CST-260 Web Animation (3)
DMA-360 Animation and Motion Graphics (3)

Digital Media Practicum (3 credits)

DMA-461 Digital Media Practicum (3)

Approved Electives  
ART-321 Life Drawing (3)
ART-419 Digital Photography II (3)
COM-351 Art of the Film (3)
COM-401 Writing for the Web (3)
CST-295 C++: Object-Oriented Programming (3)
CST-321 JAVA Programming (3)
DMA-253 Graphic Design: Theory and Practice (3)
DMA-351 Graphic Design II (3)
DMA-375 Typography (3)
DMA-411 Topics in Digital Media (3)

Emphasis in Graphic Design

Students who wish to emphasize in graphic design within the Digital Media Arts major take the following three courses in place of the elective above.

DMA-253 Graphic Design: Theory and Practice (3)
DMA-351 Graphic Design II (3)
DMA-375 Typography (3)

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Minor in Digital Media Arts

Students may declare a minor in digital media arts by competing 18 credits as follows

DMA-101 Graphic Design I
DMA-201 Time-Based Media
DMA-360-Animation and Motion Graphics

Three additional courses (9 credits), one in art, one in computer studies and one in communication arts, chosen from the approved list of program courses in consultation with the coordinator

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Four-Year Plan

Sample program of study for the digital media arts major. Students should select courses with the assistance of a faculty advisor. This listing is intended as guide only.

Fall Spring 
First year      
NDMU-100 First Year Seminar 3 Foreign Language 3
ENG-101 3 Literature 3
Foreign Language 3 COM-101 Oral Communication 3
ART-101 Drawing 1 3 ART-102 Color and Design 3
DMA-101 Graphic Design I 3 History 3
[15 credits]   [15 credits]  
Second year      
Foreign Language 3 PHL-200-level 3
MAT-110 Discrete Mathematics 3 Social Science 3
RST-201 Intro to Biblical Studies 3 COM-310 Media Literacy 3
ART-162 Digital Photography 3 CST-260 Web Animation 3
DMA-201 Time-Based Media 3 DMA-253 GD Theory 3
[15 credits]   [15 credits]  
Third year      
PHL-300/400-level 3 Religious Studies 300/400 3
Natural Science 4 General Electives/Minor 3
DMA-351: Graphic Design II 3 DMA-375 Typography 3
COM-210 Social Media 3 Major Elective 3
CST-261 Web Page Design 3 DMA-360 Motion Graphics 3
[16 credits]    [15 credits]  
Fourth year      
Physical Education 1 4 General Electives/Minor 9
4 General Electives/Minor 12 DMA-461 Practicum 3
[13 credits]   [12 credits]  

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DMA-101 Graphic Design I

Explores graphic communication through understand-ing the elements and principles of design, as well as the design process, from idea development through final execution. Emphasizes two- dimensional design, color and content creation, while employing the design process of research, sketching and experimentation. [3 credits]

DMA-201 Time-Based Media

Provides experience in the fundamentals of time-based design. Students will create projects that deal with narrative elements, composition, motion, variables and type. Storyboard project planning and software animation will be covered. [3 credits]

DMA-253 Graphic Design, Theory and Practice

Offers an introduction to the theories and practices of graphic design. Provides a historical analysis of visual communication with emphasis on the development of the profession of graphic design and the relationship of commerce and technology to the history of graphic design. Formerly ART-253. [3 credits]

DMA-351  Graphic Design II

Advances computerized graphic design skills with an emphasis on Adobe InDesign. Students learn software-specific skills needed for full color graphic arts and pre-press production. Clear and precise visual communication, problem solving and presentation are stressed. Focus on portfolio development. Formerly ART-351. Prerequisite: DMA-102. [ 3 credits ]

DMA-360 Animation and Motion Graphics

Engages students in a more intensive investigation of animation through the analysis of motion and transformation with photograph, video, illustration, and animation in traditional and digital media, with a focus on Adobe After Effects. Students learn how images and type are choreographed to produce attractive and dynamic motion graphics. Prerequisite: DMA-201. [3 credits]

DMA-375 Typography

Investigates problem-solving strategies concerned with the selection, organization and presentation of text. Students will enhance digital typesetting skills to effectively present information in print and motion applications. Topics include origins of the alphabet, typeface classifications, abstract communication with letterforms and design with text. Formerly ART-375. Prerequisite: DMA-101 or permission. [3 credits]

DMA-411 Topics in Digital Media

Surveys current topics of interest within the field of graphic design, video, animation, web and social media. Projects in typography, book design, motion, digital imaging and a variety of other methods will be addressed in different sessions to complete the course portfolio. May be taken more than once on different topics. Prerequisite: will differ depending on topic. [3 credits]

DMA-461 Digital Media Practicum

Structures a professional-level internship that places students in an entry-level position at a high-tech company in the Greater Baltimore area. Students will work under close supervision of faculty and the agency sponsor with the intention of gaining in-depth experience in the field. [3 credits]