Media School launches two new degrees

The Media School Report • June 12, 2015
Incoming Dean James Shanahan (Grayson Harbour, senior | The Media School)
Dean James Shanahan (Grayson Harbour | The Media School)

The Media School at Indiana University has received final approval to offer two new degrees, a Bachelor of Science in game design and a Bachelor of Arts in media, the school announced today.

The Indiana Commission for Higher Education, which oversees curriculum at public universities, approved the two new degrees during its June 11 meeting in Columbus.

“This is a key moment in the genesis of The Media School,” Dean James Shanahan said. “These two degrees will allow students the flexibility and depth needed to tailor their curricula to the needs of converged media industries. I’m excited that we’re ready to move forward immediately on this front.”

The Media School, established in July within the College of Arts and Sciences, merged journalism, telecommunication and film studies. The two new degrees, along with the Bachelor of Arts in journalism, a degree offered by the former School of Journalism since the early 1990s, will provide current and future students with a full array of media courses to support their career choices.

“Our mission is to be at the forefront of media development, educating students for roles that may not even exist now,” Shanahan said. “Our faculty have done an amazing job of putting together programs that will undoubtedly draw a great deal of student interest and that will parallel very nicely the research mission of the school.”

Students entering the school this fall will have access to the courses and programs to work toward any of the three degrees. Current students may choose these new degrees or continue within the degree structure in place when they began their studies.

Castronova
Associate professor Edward Castronova (Maggie Richards | The Media School)

Within each degree are specializations and concentrations that will enable students to craft their own curriculum within the structure of the degrees. For example, a student pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in media may select a concentration in interactive and digital media, then specialize in graphic communication. At the same time, all Media School undergraduates will take the same core courses to establish their knowledge of media theory and practice, and they will fulfill the broader liberal arts requirements of the degrees.

The bachelor’s degree in game design builds on the program started several years ago through the telecommunications department.

“It’s game on in Bloomington,” said Edward Castronova, director of the game design program and chair of media arts and production. “We are thrilled to be helping The Media School start a new era of advanced studies in interactive media technology.”

Game design students will have access to new game lab facilities in Franklin Hall, which is being renovated to accommodate The Media School.

Earlier this year, the IU Board of Trustees approved the two new degrees, and the Indiana Commission for Higher Education vote was the final step toward making them available to students.

The school also will offer Master of Science and Master of Arts degrees, not yet finalized, and a doctorate.

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