MCMA 550 Class Assignments
Historical Topic Presentations (25%)
You will each have to give one presentation on one of the media topics covered in class. The topics will be randomly assigned.
Each presentation will consist of an oral lecture, accompanied by audio/visual illustration of the media, and a photocopied hand-out. The lecture should be 20 to 30 minutes long (not counting any time-based media). Your lecture should summarize the evolution and basic history of the media you have been assigned. You should come prepared to illustrate the lecture with electronic material, slides, film clips, or other media. In some cases this material may add to the length devoted to your presentation. If you’d like to suggest a reading for the week of your presentation—one that may amend or substitute for a listed one—please send it to me as an attachment at least a week in advance.
The printed hand-out (not to exceed two pages) should include your name, the date of presentation and your topic; a schematic outline of presented material (but NOT all your talking points). It should also include a brief time line, featuring significant names and dates in the history of your media. You should also have a bibliography that identifies 5-7 significant sources. These sources should include canonical and current major work(s) published on the topic. Ideally the sources will include books and articles, general and specific studies; so that if one were to read all the works cited, he or she would then have a good synoptic view of the field and currents in its consideration. You must have yourself referred to the works on the bibliography. Use a consistent and approved (MLA, Chicago, etc.) citation standard.
Be prepared to field questions and lead discussion after your presentation.
Lead Discussion (15%)
You will each choose one week in which you will lead discussion on the course readings. You should summarize and contextualize the readings for that week. Presentations should be about 15 minutes in length. Your presentations should be accompanied by visual examples which help to illustrate a practical application of the readings (you are encouraged to try to use visual examples other than those mentioned in the readings). Prepare questions to spark conversation and involve fellow classmates in the discussion.
Weekly Blog Postings (15%)
Each week you must post comments and/or questions on at least two of the readings on the class Blog. Feel free to post media examples that might be pertinent to discussion. Your comments should be at least 2 paragraphs in length and should demonstrate your processing of the material and your relation to it as an artist. Your questions/comments MUST be posted by 9 am on Mondays before each class.
You are required to come prepared to class and to speak regularly. One of the best ways to process difficult concepts and material is to talk about it and to listen to what others have to say. Occupying a seat does not constitute participation.
Final Project (25%)
You will each research and prepare a syllabus for an undergraduate course on the history and theory of a media related to your research/creative interests. You will also prepare notes for a 50 minute lecture and a presentation one of topics on your syllabus. You must submit a full syllabus, with course readings listed. Your notes for the lecture should be geared towards the average undergraduate student with no knowledge of the subject you are teaching. This means you should have read all the material that you assign for that section. You should outline your methodology for approaching the subject and provide students with examples they will understand. (Remember the average UG student will not look up difficult terms, names or concepts.)
Final Exam (10%)
You will each give a 15 minute presentation on your pedagogical approach to creating your syllabus and lecture. You must also turn in a 1-2 page paper on how you as an artist fit into the media history you are proposing to teach.