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Communication Department


Film and Digital Media


In addition to the major classes, film students must take the following courses to fulfill the requirements of the concentration (click on the links below to read detailed descriptions):


        For a simplified, printable listing, click here.



Choose four of the following:

    • COMM 224 - Pre-Production
    • COMM 255 - Screenwriting Workshop
    • COMM 326 - Digital Production
    • COMM 327 - International Cinema: Topics
    • FMA 2241 - (16mm) Filmmaking*
    • FMA 2242 - Videography*
    • FMA 2243 - Audio: Production and Aethetics*
    • FMA 2361 - Writing for Media*
    • FMA 2451 - Experimental Video and Multi-media*
    • FMA 2452 - Multimedia Production*
    • FMA 2551 - Editing Film and Video*
    • FMA 2673 - Independent Film and Video*
    • FMA 2771 - Producing*
    • FMA 3242 - Experimental TV*
    • FMA 3244 - Lighting for Film and Video*
    • FMA 3341 - Scene Analysis for Writers/Directors*
    • FMA 3361 - Screen Performance*
    • FMA 3451 - Animation Workshop*
    • FMA 3452 - New Technologies*
    • FMA 3551 - Advanced Editing*
    • FMA 3670 - Topics in Media Culture*
    • FMA 3770 - Topics in Film Study*++
    • FMA 4240 - Topics in Production*++
    • FMA 4243 - Film and Video Sound*
    • FMA 4341 - Screen Directing*
    • FMA 4440 - Topics in Production*++
    • FMA 4451 - Digital Animation, Composition & Modeling*
    • FMA 4670 - Topics in Film Study*++
    • FMA 4673 - International Cinema*
    • FMA 4674 - Media Anthropology*
    • FMA 4698 - History of Documentary*
Messiah College Film Department


Messiah College Film Department


Messiah College Film Department


Messiah College Film Department



(*) - Courses taught at Temple University through the Messiah College Philadelphia Campus; these courses are subject to change. Students may read descriptions of these courses by navigating to filmTemple University's website. Students are required to spend at least one semester, but no more than four, at the Messiah College Philadelphia Campus where they take course work through Temple University's Film and Media Arts program.


(**) - Internship requirements may be fulfilled at sites approved by the Department Chair. Messiah works with Temple's Internship Program in Los Angeles to assist with placements. Contact the Department Chair or your advisor for more information.


(++) - Students may not take more than one Topics in Film Study course without department approval.




Detailed Course Descriptions (as found in the Course Catalog)


COMM 217 - Introduction to Film (3 credits)

Training in the language of cinema and video analysis and discussion of the basic issues involved in understanding film as an expressive cultural form. Areas covered include the shot, the scene, camera angles, lighting, montage, mis en scene, staging, camera movement, narrative structure, sound, film and digital media stocks, dialogue, and characterization.

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COMM 225 - Digital Editing (3)

Training in digital editing software programs such as Apple Final Cut Pro and Avid Digital Express as well as exposure to concepts of composition within scenes and issues of organiztion within the larger work (offered January term).

Prerequisite: COMM 217. Priority given to film concentration students; others by permission of Department Chair.

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COMM 226 - 16mm Filmmaking (3)

This course provides a comprehensive introduction to techniques related to film production. Unlike digital production, film equipment requires much more intervention by the artist composing the film. Techniques dealing with the camera mechanism, lens, light, color, filters, and movement are the focus. Students will be better prepared for work in the film industry or within graduate studies programs after completing this course.

Prerequisite: COMM 217 and COMM 225. Priority given to film concentration students, exceptions may be granted by the Instructor or by permission of the Department Chair.

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COMM 251 - American Cinema I: 1890-1930 (3)

This course examines the development of American cinema from Edison nd Muybridge's first experiments with filming motion through the emergence of narrative film, through the development of Hollywood and the earliest days of sound film.

Prerequisite: COMM 217.

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COMM 252 - American Cinema II: 1931 - Present (3)

This course traces Hollywood's golden age, its tribulation through the 1950s with the emergence of television and the McCarthy era, shifts in expressive strategies during the 1960s and 1970s and evolution through the 1980s and 1990s in response to technological developments and the waning modern culture.

Prerequisite: COMM 217.

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COMM 328 - Essence of Cinema (3)

This course will explore the classic texts of film theory from the earliest dreams of what cinema might become in the 1890s through contemporary explortions of film and digital media and their role in global culture. Special attention paid to aesthetics, narrative theory, formal questions, cinema's relationship to other arts, exhibition, understanding the audience and the viewing experience. Prerequisite: COMM 217.

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INTE 394 - Internship** (6-8)

Only third-year and fourth-year students who are academically proficient, and have the approval of their academic department, are eligible. This discipline-related work experience provides for application of classroom theory and development of professional skills. Students observe and participate in the activities of an organization or assist with a special project(s) that promotes professional development. Credit is awarded based upon length and intensity of involvement, the number of individualized learning objectives to be accomplished, as well as prescribed learning activities. Readings, topic papers, learning contract, portfolio, employer evaluations, and participation in a monthly class are some of the components.

Available during fall, spring, and summer sessions (Letter grade only).

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COMM 224 - Pre-Production (3)

Overview of areas of knowledge and skills ranging from staging and rehearsing actors to the process of media production from conceptualization to production management. Course work includes readings, lectures, case studies, and multi-genre assignments in developing hypothetical projects. Prerequisite: COMM 217.

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COMM 255 - Screenwriting Workshop (3)

In this intensive writing seminar, students progress from writing scenes for film and television to beginning consideration of writing an entire feature length/episode length script.

Prerequisite: COMM 254.

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COMM 326 - Digital Production (3)

Intensive instruction and practice with the tools of recording and structuring digital media. Students will be grouped in four-person crews and will complete four to five digital media exercises dealing with lighting, sound, editing, and other aspects of narrative and non-narrative construction.

Prerequisites: COMM 217 and COMM 226.

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COMM 327 - International Cinema: Topics (3)

This course will focus on one selected national cinema. The formal, aethestic, historical and theoretical developments of particular national cinemas will be examined. The course will also focus on the way in which particular cinematic strategies of expression emerge from specific cultural contexts and consider how specific national cinemas participate in and influence larger developments within cinema. May be repeated for additional credit as topic/study changes.

Prerequisite: COMM 217.

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