Sample Syllabus

Instructor: Ian Evenstar
Office Hours: Available upon request
Email: ianevenstar@gmail.com
Cell: 213.321.0882
Twitter: @evenstar7
 
Course wiki:
http://basecamphq.com
Course time: MW 6:00pm – 8:50pm
Room: TBD

Course Description:

This studio class brings together new media artists in a collaborative environment to produce professional-level projects. During the process, students will learn the creative process, develop their design thinking, and master analogue and digital techniques of new media art-making.

Key Issues:

Generally speaking, computers and software are considered a quick fix to design challenges or critical exploration in the arts. In this course we will look at the appropriate times when computer generated media and digital processes can support our thinking, writing and speaking. We will also evaluate when visual analogue techniques such drawing, sculpting and cutting & pasting are most appropriate for your project. Because analogue techniques aren’t embraced as much as they once were by studio artists, and the fact that digital tools and techniques are growing rapidly, there are three key issues that this class will address:

  1. Mastering analogue skills, specifically drawing and hand mock-ups as a means to expedite and resolve critical perspective during the creative process.
  2. Developing the digital skills, techniques and concepts necessary to create art and design.
  3. Learning digital literacy and not overly relying on digital tool fluency within the creative process.
Course Format and Hands-on Lab Component:
Classes will begin promptly in the studio at 6:00pm and end at 8:50pm. Students are welcome to stay longer until the studio closes at 12:00am, but are only required to be present from 6:00pm-8:50pm. On days that we do not have any work to present and critique, each class will begin with general house-keeping and discussion for hour. The remaining time will be spent working on projects in an open-format with self-guided, peer and instructor interaction. On days that we have work to critique, students will arrive early enough to prep their work for presentation and then from 6:00pm-8:50pm there will be peer review following a 5-10 minute presentation from each student. Peer review and critique processes will be explained before our first project review.
Required Text:
I suggest buying these texts and begin building your personal library since you will likely refer to these texts for the rest of your life, or you can simply download the required readings from the course wiki (Basecamp.)
  • How Images Think, Ron Burnett
  • Layout Essentials, Beth Tondreau
Assessment:
  
  • Concept: The projects central idea must be clearly communicated in the work
  • Execution: The project must be realized with professional execution and technique
  • Reflection: The design thinking must be evident in the written reflection about the work

Grading Breakdown:

  • Five Media-rich blog posts utilizing material from readings or exploring techniques in class: 20%
  • Participation in discussion and critiques: 20%
  • Initial project: 10%
  • Midterm project: 20%
  • Final project: 30%

Weekly Schedule:

  • week 01 : Course overview and introduction to the core question, “What are blue and red shifted skills and how are they used in the creative process?
  • week 02 : Discussion of readings and assignment review.
  • week 03 : Presentations, critiques and review.
  • week 04 : Discussion of readings, midterm assignment review and hands-on demo.
  • week 05 : Discussion of previous demo, assignment status check and hands-on demo.
  • week 06 : Presentations and project review.
  • week 07 : All class studio time.
  • week 08 : Midterm presentations, critiques and review.
  • week 09 : Discussion of readings, final project assignment review and hands-on demo.
  • week 10 : All class studio time.
  • week 11 : Thanksgiving holiday — no class
  • week 12 : All class studio time with desk critiques.
  • week 13 : Final presentations, critiques and review.
  • week 14 : Initial, midterm and final project revision presentations.

Tools and Platforms:

We will use a variety of digital (and analog) tools and platforms throughout the semester. Some of these tools we will only touch on briefly in order to showcase a possible area of exploration, and others we focus on in-depth in order to build a solid foundation. The important idea is that digital tools are changing rapidly, so it is more important to build a solid understanding of say, “image manipulation,” than it is to learn every single tool that can accomplish this technique.

For a complete list of tools, please click here: Tools and Platforms.

Fair Use and Citation Guidelines

The University asserts that its use of media within courses is covered under fair use, since it is educational in nature. All projects created by students will need to consider copyright and fair use, and must include academically-appropriate citations in the form of a works cited section which covers all sources, in order to receive a passing grade. For more detailed information regarding fair use, please visit: The works cited is either included in the project or as a separate document, as appropriate to your project. The style we use is APA 5th edition and you may refer to these guidelines:http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/01/
Statement on Academic Integrity
The University seeks to maintain an optimal learning environment. General principles of academic honesty include the concept of respect for the intellectual property of others, the expectation that individual work will be submitted unless otherwise allowed by an instructor, and the obligations both to protect one’s own academic work from misuse by others as well as to avoid using another’s work as one’s own. All students are expected to understand and abide by these principles. Scampus, the Student Guidebook, contains the Student Conduct Code in Section 11.00, while the recommended sanctions are located in Appendix A:http://www.usc.edu/dept/publications/SCAMPUS/gov/. Students will be referred to the Office of Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards for further review, should there be any suspicion of academic dishonesty. The Review process can be found at: http://www.usc.edu/student-affairs/SJACS/.
Statement for Students with Disabilities
Any student requesting academic accommodations based on a disability is required to register with Disability Services and Programs (DSP) each semester. A letter of verification for approved accommodations can be obtained from DSP. Please be sure the letter is delivered to me (or to TA) as early in the semester as possible. DSP is located in STU 301 and is open 8:30 a.m.–5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.