School of Arts and Humanities

Emerging Media and Communication (B.A.)

The undergraduate major in Emerging Media and Communication (EMAC) is designed to educate "communicators of the twenty-first century" who can contribute to evolving fields such as journalism, advertising, public relations, corporate and civic communications, and the entertainment industry. The changing nature of communication in a technologically sophisticated, message-saturated and global economy has created a major and fast-growing need for graduates with the ability to communicate effectively in a wide range and mix of media. These new communicators will combine technological expertise with effective communication skills across multiple media platforms, developing "new media literacy" in response to the digital revolution that has radically changed all aspects of human communication.

Students will receive substantive educational training in the rhetorical, cultural, and cognitive aspects of communication, with an emphasis on new and emerging media. The EMAC program reflects a commitment to the concept of "applied humanities," as the curriculum balances theoretical understanding with opportunities for practical application. Some courses are predominantly academic, focusing on matters such as theory and history. Others blend academic analysis with practical application.

Today’s technologically sophisticated and media rich environment requires a comprehensive approach to communication that includes but is not restricted to traditional notions of writing and rhetoric. Students who complete the prescribed curriculum will be able to identify appropriate media and effective rhetorical approaches for a wide range of purposes, audiences and situations. The curriculum integrates courses from three areas: communication/psychology, humanities, and media studies. Courses in Communication and Psychology focus both on the cognitive and social processes of communication to help students understand how people create, use and interpret messages. The humanities courses provide students with aesthetic, cultural and philosophic contexts for studying and employing emerging forms of technologically mediated communication. The media studies courses allow students to gain the expertise to communicate effectively using advanced forms of digital technology while honing collaborative skills. The curriculum culminates with a collaborative capstone project that requires students to integrate the three components with the creation, dissemination and contextual analysis of a multi-media text.

Educational Objectives

Students who complete a B.A. in EMAC will become effective producers and consumers of technologically mediated communication who can combine technological expertise with strategic communication skills. Graduates will be able to demonstrate this integrated expertise as they:

  • Analyze communication opportunities to employ the most appropriate complex of media and rhetorical strategies to create and disseminate informative, entertaining and persuasive messages
  • Create and/or apply digital content for existing and/or emerging forms of media
  • Adapt their messages to audiences and technological constraints while retaining (and amplifying) the benefits provided by existing and emerging media
  • Anticipate the ethical implications of emerging media and their power to shape public opinion.

Facilities

EMAC students have access to sophisticated facilities that include computer laboratories, a sound design laboratory, a Motion Capture laboratory and other facilities designed to encourage collaborative learning experiences.

Bachelor of Arts in Emerging Media and Communication Degree Requirements (120 hours)

I. Core Curriculum Requirements: 42 hours

  1. Communication (6 hours)
    3 hours Communication (RHET 1302)
    3 hours Communication Elective (COMM 3300)
  2. Social and Behavioral Sciences (15 hours)
    6 hours Government (GOVT 2301 and GOVT 2302)
    6 hours American History
    3 hours Social and Behavioral Science Elective (PSY 2301 is recommended)
  3. Humanities and Fine Arts (6 hours)
    3 hours Fine Arts (FILM 2332)
    3 hours Humanities (HUMA 1301)
  4. Mathematics and Quantitative Reasoning (6 hours)
    3 hours College Math (MATH 1314 is recommended)
    3 hours Quantitative Mathematics (PSY 2317 is recommended)
  5. Science (9 hours including at least one course with a substantial laboratory component)

II. Major Requirements, Lower Division: 15 hours

ATEC 2382 Computer Imaging
ATEC 2384 Basic Design Principles and Practices
ATEC 2385 Sound Design
ATEC 2321 Writing and Research for New Media
ATEC 2322 Introduction to Electronic and Digital Communication

III. Major Requirements, Upper Division: 30 hours

COMM 3300 Reading Media Critically
COMM 3342 Issues in Communication*
COMM 4314 Persuasion
ATEC 3326 Emergent Media and Mass Communication
ATEC 3361 Internet Studio
EMAC 4325 Digital Writing
ATEC 4326 Emergent Media Production
EMAC 4V80 Capstone Project
PSY 3350 Psychology of Communication
PSY 3351 Mass Communication and Behavior

IV. Elective Requirements: 33 hours

Prescribed Electives (15 hours)

Any five of the following:
ARTS 4308 Image/Text Workshop
ATEC 3330 Digital Video Production I
ATEC 3363 Basic Interaction Design
ATEC 4330 Digital Video Production II
ATEC 4346 Story Telling for New Media
ATEC 4347 Advanced Design
CGS 4352 Human Computer Interaction I
CGS 4353 Human Computer Interaction II
COMM 3301 Public and Professional Speaking for Business
COMM 3311 Interpersonal Communication
COMM 3342 Issues in Communication*
COMM 4340 Small Group Communication
COMM 4350 Intercultural Communication
CRWT 3308 Creative Writing
EMAC 4372 Topics in Emerging Media and Communication
PSY 3355 Psychology of Creativity

Advanced Electives (6 hours)

Students are required to take at least six hours of advanced electives outside their major field of study. These must be either upper-division classes or lower-division courses that have prerequisites.

Free Electives (12 hours)

Both upper-and lower-division courses may be used as electives, but students must complete at least 51 hours of upper-division credit to qualify for graduation.

*Repeatable for credit up to 6 hours.