Welcome to COMM 2302-1. Media Interpretation and Criticism

In this course, you will develop media literacy skills by critically interpreting the aesthetic properties and cultural meanings of print, audio, film/video, and interactive media. You will also deepen your media literacy skills by applying this knowledge to the creation of media messages. We will investigate a range of media including print, film, television, and video games. From theories about semiotics and narrative structure to ideas about representation and postmodernism, we will sample a range of perspectives for interpreting deeper-level meanings. Throughout the semester, we will explore technical aspects of media production such as visualization, graphic design, and video editing. Though our focus is primarily analytical, students who aspire to a career in the media industry can use this course to build their production skills.

In this course, you will:

  1. Analyze print, audio, film/video, and interactive messages using appropriate aesthetic terminology and principles,
  2. Apply a range of media theories to the interpretation and criticism of visual messages,
  3. Use photo manipulation software to create a print advertisement,
  4. Use video editing software to remix audiovisual footage,
  5. Conduct a basic quantitative content analysis, and
  6. Perform a qualitative textual analysis of a media work.

This is a required course for communication majors. It is also an example of the “Humanities Approach to Creation and Analysis” in the Pathways Curriculum.  Upon successful completion of this course, you will have demonstrated the ability to:

  1. discuss the significance of ideas, texts, performances, or cultural artifacts within an appropriate intellectual or historical framework, and
  2. apply the interpretive or analytical methods that characterize at least one of the humanistic disciplines.

This course also counts toward the “Written Communication (WC) Capacity.” Upon successful completion of this course, you will have demonstrated the ability to:

  1. write a sustained academic work with appropriate use of evidence and developed reasoning to support an argument,
  2. improve your writing in response to feedback, and
  3. craft prose that conforms to the conventions of our discipline.

For those pursuing the common curriculum, this course is listed in Trinity’s Common Curriculum within “Understanding the Arts and Literature – Visual Arts, Music, Performance and Aesthetic Production.”

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