Film and Media Theory

University of Otago

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Film and Media Theory

  • Host University

    University of Otago

  • Location

    Dunedin, New Zealand

  • Area of Study

    Film Studies, Mass Communications, Media Studies, Radio/Television/Film

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    18 200-level MFCO or FIME points or GEND 205 or GEND 305

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    A survey of the major critical and theoretical approaches to film and media to include the impact on contemporary digital media convergence and transmedia productions.

    This paper will examine major problems, issues and movements in the theorisation of film, television and digital media. The common denominator will be a focus on the moving image in commercial forms, with an emphasis on implications for society, culture and consciousness. Special attention will be paid to the digital transformation of contemporary moving images through transmedia phenomena and the challenges this presents for theoretical traditions based on media specificity.

    Course Structure
    The course explores the various ways in which film and media theory has considered the experience of the moving image in terms of ontology, representation and signification and how it has constituted its recipients variously as masses, audiences, spectators and users.

    -Concept tests (3): 20% each
    -Take-home essay exam: 40%

    Learning Outcomes
    -Demonstrate understanding of the major approaches to theorising film and media
    -Show advanced knowledge of the historical development of film and media theory
    -Evaluate the use of different theoretical approaches and apply them to the critical analysis of film and media texts

    Course reader and on Blackboard

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Availability of courses is based on enrollment numbers. All students should seek pre-approval for alternate courses in the event of last minute class cancellations

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.