Digital Media Arts (Major, Minor)

Communication Arts Department

Pamela O'Brien, Ph.D.
Britt Christensen, Ph.D.

Degrees offered

Major
Minor

Campuses

Main Campus

The Digital Media Arts Program of Study in the College of Arts, Sciences, and Business 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.

Summary

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 of Study 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 complete 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 department's digital media lab, equipped with Macintosh computers and Adobe Creative Cloud. 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 completed as early as possible in the student's Program of Study, ideally concurrent with DMA-101.

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 complete the following three courses in place of the electives above.

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

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
.

Four-Year Plan

Below is a 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.

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]


Courses

ART-101 Drawing I

Introduces the fundamentals of free-hand drawing and explores a variety of materials, techniques and subject matter such as still life, landscape and the human form as students identify individual areas of interest and artistic expression. Informal slide presentations and class critiques will expose students to the diversity of drawing and its manifestations in contemporary art and culture. Fulfills the general education requirement in fine arts and Artistic Expression. [3 credits]

ART-102 Color and Design

Introduces the fundamental elements and principles of color and design as a communicative tool. The course is designed for students with limited studio background and explores a wide variety of mediums and techniques as students develop technical virtuosity and personal aesthetic. The concepts and design strategies explored in this course can be applied in related areas of computer design, interior design and fashion design. Fulfills the General Education Requirement in Fine Arts. [3 credits]

ART-162 Digital Photography I

Introduces the fundamentals of digital imaging using Adobe Creative Cloud with an emphasis on camera vision. Through assigned readings and classroom discussions, students also will gain a critical perspective of the impact of digital imaging on photographic practice. Fulfills general education requirement in fine arts and artistic expression. [3 credits]

ART-321 Life Drawing I

Provides individualized instruction in the study of the nude with special emphasis on observation, movement, proportion, figural composition and pictorial space. All sessions will include short and sustained poses. Prerequisite: ART-101 or permission of instructor. [ 3 credits ]

ART-419 Digital Photography II

Deepens experience in digital photography and investigates the relationships between communication through photographs and digital images and other electronic media such as the digital press, World Wide Web and the virtual environment of the video game. Students enhance their skills and personal aesthetic using Adobe Photoshop and choose projects from still photography, graphic design or motion graphics. Prerequisite: ART-162. [3 credits]

COM-210 Social Media

Engages students in a theoretical and critical look at the incursion of social media (such as blogs, Facebook, Twitter) into human communication processes and considers the implications of use of these media for the future of communication. [3 credits]

COM-310 Media Literacy

Explores visual and audio literacy through the balance of critical consumption and production skills. Employs a series of units in which students decode complex visual and audio images and then move to composition in both visual and auditory production. Creation of a Web-based portfolio is the culminating unit. [3 credits]

COM-401 Writing for the Web

Explores techniques for making the transition from writing for traditional mass media to writing for online media. Teaches students to use online resources and produce online messages and "articles" of various types. Provides opportunities to develop materials for the professional portfolio. [3 credits]

CST-261 Web Page Design

Focuses on coding and design of Web pages using HTML and JavaScript to create high-level Internet content. Includes legal and ethical issues as well as human-computer interaction design concepts. Students demonstrate the progression of their skills through the successful completion of a number of practical projects. Satisfies the technological competency requirement. [3 credits]

CST-295 C++ Object-Oriented Programming

Introduces object-oriented programming including objects, classes, inheritance and polymorphism. Includes high-level structures such as pointers and arrays as well as data structures with stacks and queues. Prerequisite: CST-171 or MAT-211. Satisfies the technological competency requirement. [3 credits]

CST-321 Java Programming

Introduces object-oriented programming using objects and classes to write Java applications and Web applets for simple gaming. Includes graphical features of Java such as objects, images, event handling, color control and layout control. Prerequisite: CST-171 or MAT-211. [3 credits]

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. [ 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]