http://com.miami.edu/programs

Dept. Code: CCA

Introduction

The Department of Cinematic Arts offers a major and minor in Motion Pictures.

A Motion Pictures major selects from the following tracks: Business, Critical Studies, General, Production, or Screenwriting.

The Department of Cinematic Arts prepares the next generation of storytellers, innovators, filmmakers, researchers, and entrepreneurs for the abundance of opportunities in world of film, digital media, television and emerging technologies.

Design:

The curriculum offered by the Department of Cinematic Arts is designed to enable you to customize your education, within a learning environment that is collaborative and conducive to the pursuit, development, and exchange of ideas and information. It provides students with the training necessary to succeed in a range of careers defined by a rapidly changing media landscape, and equips them to best leverage innovations in the field.

Goals of the Program are:

  • To furnish students with the technical and practical skills needed to make them career-ready through hands-on learning, problem-solving based inquiry, and advanced study.
  • To nurture the individual talent, creativity, and discovery process of every student by fostering principles of collaboration, professionalism, and intellectual curiosity.
  • To support the educational process through mentoring and advising by renowned faculty and seasoned professionals.
  • To encourage students to integrate theory and practice, to cultivate the capacity to think critically, and to connect technology and art and/or design.
  • To familiarize students with theoretical, historical, and cultural approaches and expose them to a range of traditions within the field of study.
  • To provide access to state of the art facilities, the most technologically advanced tools, and the latest technology.
  • To continue to build on our reputation as a place of innovation and interdisciplinarity, as we educate students according to the highest professional and ethical standards.

Opportunities:

As a major or minor in the CCA department, many opportunities await you, including access to the following facilities and equipment: digital cameras; grip and electrical equipment; a soundstage; digital post-production image and sound facilities; a digital animation studio; a VR Lab and Design Lab (NERDLab).

The department offers a Semester in Los Angeles Program each spring and regularly hosts summer study abroad in such locations as Paris, Amsterdam, Spain, Greece, and Prague (FAMU).

In addition to the chance to work on student projects, there is an array of extracurricular activities in the School of Communication, including the award-winning cable channel UMTV and Delta Kappa Alpha, the National Professional Co-Ed Cinematic Arts Fraternity.

The Bill Cosford Cinema, a state-of-the-art movie theater exhibits first-run alternative, foreign and classic films and hosts guest filmmakers and special events throughout the year. The Cosford Cinema serves as a venue for local film festivals as well as the annual Canes Film Festival featuring UM undergraduate and graduate work.

Students have the opportunity to compete in the UM Canes Film Festival to earn the chance to take their work to a professional showcase screening, held annually in Los Angeles.

Major Cognate Area

  • Motion Pictures:
    • Arts and Humanities

Minor Cognate Area

  • Motion Pictures Minor:
    • Arts and Humanities

Please note, students completing majors and minors within the same department may only satisfy one required cognate area of study. 

Degree Programs

The Bachelor of Science in Communication is offered in Motion Pictures

Majors are offered in:

  • Motion Pictures Business Track
  • Motion Pictures Critical Studies Track
  • Motion Pictures General Track
  • Motion Pictures Production Track
  • Motion Pictures Screenwriting Track

Each candidate for the degree of Bachelor of Science in Communication will complete the School of Communication's requirements including courses in the School's General Education Required Areas of Study. Motion Pictures major must also complete a separate minor or a second major in either a second Program of Study within the School or in an academic program outside the School.

Admission to the Motion Pictures Major

Before admission as a Motion Pictures major, a student must:

  • Complete the five Core courses listed below, in residence at the University, all with grades of C or higher (C- is not acceptable).
  • Students who have obtained the written approval of the Chair of Cinematic Arts to use transfer credit hours to satisfy one or more requirements of that major may be required to complete additional courses in residence at the University before being admitted to that major.
  • Upon completion of a student's first 45 University credit hours while enrolled in the School of Communication, all University credit hours earned toward the major will be used in computing a student's major cumulative grade point average; only those students with a cumulative average of 2.5 or higher will be admitted to the major.
  • A student who has completed 45 credit hours while enrolled in the School of Communication, but who has not been admitted to one of the Communication majors, may be dismissed from the School. A student who has completed 60 University credit hours while enrolled in the School, but who has not been admitted to one of the Communication majors, will be dismissed from the School.

Major in Motion Pictures

Students majoring in motion pictures will choose one of five tracks:

  • Motion Pictures Business Track
  • Motion Pictures Critical Studies Track
  • Motion Pictures General Track
  • Motion Pictures Production Track
  • Motion Pictures Screenwriting Track

Minors in Cinematic Arts Department

The Department of Cinematic Arts offers minors in:

  • Motion Pictures

Majors in Cinematic Arts

Minors in Cinematic Arts

CCA 103. Survey of Motion Pictures. 3 Credit Hours.

Examination of the aesthetic, social, and economic aspects of the motion picture industry. Concentration on the present state of the medium with particular emphasis on future trends.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

CCA 113. Documentary Approaches. 3 Credit Hours.

Students will explore the varied forms and narrative approaches used in contemporary documentary filmmaking to understand the position of the filmmaker as a storyteller.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 126. Introduction to Screenwriting. 3 Credit Hours.

Creation and formatting of narrative material for motion pictures. Emphasis on writing the short film.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

CCA 151. Introduction to Digital Filmmaking. 3 Credit Hours.

This is the introductory class in digital filmmaking. Students make short films using digital equipment to develop an understanding of the motion picture as a creative expression and a tool of communication. Lectures and laboratories acquaint the student with the basic techniques of filmmaking.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 206. History of International Cinema. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is an examination of the origin and history of the motion picture. Narrative and non-fiction genres, in the American and World Cinemas, from 1890 to the present are discussed.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 251. Motion Picture Workshop: Storytelling. 3 Credit Hours.

This course follows the introductory CCA151. This class covers the dynamics of dramatic structure and the practice of the grammar of cinematic language (including the use of space, metaphor, camera angle, performance, and transitions.) Students develop pre-visualization skills to enhance narrative clarity; analytical abilities are enhanced through the shared critique of student projects.
Prerequisite: CCA 103 and CCA 151.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 294. Special Topics in Cinematic Arts. 3 Credit Hours.

The subject matter of this course corresponds to the announced “Special Topic” of that semester. Please consult the current class schedule for details.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 326. Intermediate Screenwriting. 3 Credit Hours.

Study of, and practice in, writing feature length, narrative motion pictures. Development of story line in treatment form, attention to cinematic structure, the development of character, and its presentation on screen is discussed.
Pre-Requisite: CCA 126.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 329. Writing for Series Television. 3 Credit Hours.

An introduction to the structures and techniques of writing situation-comedy and dramatic series television.
Pre-Requisite: CCA 126.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 330. The Business of Television. 3 Credit Hours.

The Business of Television provides an in-depth examination of contemporary trends in scripted dramatic and comedic content. Students learn how to develop and secure distribution for television shows across all platforms.
Prerequisite: CCA 126 or CCA 329.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

CCA 351. Intermediate Filmmaking. 3 Credit Hours.

This course is an introduction to intermediate level techniques and methodologies for digital production of all contemporary media genres including narrative, documentary, experimental and music performance. Students will work in crews, collaboratively, with specific assigned roles throughout the production work flow.
Pre-Requisite: CCA 206 and CCA 251 and CCA 353 or CCA 356 or CCA 357 or CCA 395.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 353. Post Production Sound Editing and Design. 3 Credit Hours.

This class develops student skills in the field of sound using Pro-tools software. Post-production sound-editing and design is both a seminar and a workshop that provides a practical and theoretical introduction to sound and its impact on the narrative. The course explores this process from production recording through the final mix.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 355. Essentials of Documentary Film. 3 Credit Hours.

Students produce compelling non-fiction films with a clear point of view. To enhance awareness of documentary storytelling techniques, they will analyze the works of a variety of documentary filmmakers.
Pre-Requisite: CCA 151.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

CCA 356. Cinematography. 3 Credit Hours.

An overview of the cinematographer's process from script to screen. Working with camera, lighting, and grip equipment on exercises and projects is discussed.
Prerequisite: CCA 151.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 357. Editing. 3 Credit Hours.

Introduction to the theory and practice of motion picture editing. Short editing assignments are designed to develop students' understanding of aesthetic, and technical considerations in the art of dramatic editing.
Prerequisite: CCA 151.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall.

CCA 364. Business of Motion Pictures. 3 Credit Hours.

This class presents an overview of the film business: who creates content and how they do it? Students synthesize information and translate it into a strategic plan for either a business or an individual career path in the entertainment industry.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 386. Online Screenwriting. 3 Credit Hours.

This is an online course on screenwriting. Students learn to analyze films through the lens of genres (including drama, comedy, horror, romance, sci-fi, and coming of age.) Students both learn to write scripts and to critique genre conceits. This is an asynchronous self-directed course.
Pre-Requisite: CCA 126.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

CCA 394. Special Topics in Cinematic Arts. 3 Credit Hours.

This course subject matter varies according to announced special topic. See class schedule for details.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 395. Directing Techniques I. 3 Credit Hours.

This class develops student skills in the field of directing. The craft of directing is taught through performing exercises, camerawork, and readings.
Prerequisite: CCA 151.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 401. Nonfiction Film and Digital Media. 3 Credit Hours.

This class offers an examination of American and world nonfiction films and media. Through screenings, research and discussion, students will analyze the various style and genres of nonfiction film.
Requisite: Junior Standing or Higher.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 402. Global Issues and Filmmaking: An Interdisciplinary Approach. 3 Credit Hours.

A trans-disciplinary approach to study and analyze a variety of complex global Issues such as climate change, human security, globalization, and rise of nationalism while gaining hands-on experience to develop short analytical documentary films about such topics. Prior film-making experience is NOT required
Requisite: Permission of Instructor.
Components: HRK.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 403. Film Directors. 3 Credit Hours.

This class will examine questions of authorship through close readings of films in their historical and social context. We will focus on the work of over a dozen directors, exploring their techniques, cinematic styles, methods and the ideological implications of their films. We consider a diverse range of filmmakers and their representations of gender, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, and nationality. This class will be taught in the Harkness Table format, which is student-led and discussion-based. The focus is on dialogue and discussion, placing the impetus on the students to do the work in advance of each class that will lead to interactive and rewarding learning. In addition to viewing films, students will do readings, online, and group assignments as well as short written assignments that help prepare them for active, lively in-class discussion. This course is part of the University of Miami's Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP).
Requisite: Junior Standing or Higher.
Components: HRK.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

CCA 404. Aspects of Contemporary Cinema. 3 Credit Hours.

Study of contemporary movements in American and world cinemas.
Prerequisite: CCA 206 Or Junior Standing Or Higher.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

CCA 405. Representations of Sport in Popular Culture. 3 Credit Hours.

This course presents approaches to understanding and contextualizing representations of sports in cinema, television, and digital media. Students gain valuable skills in critical thinking, analysis, and evaluation as they learn to reflect on the various ways sports are portrayed in selected media and popular culture.
Requisite: Junior Standing or Higher.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 406. Genres. 3 Credit Hours.

Study of selected genres from a variety of critical perspectives. Issues pertaining to methodologies of defining and categorizing film are discussed.
Prerequisite: CCA 206 Or Junior Standing Or Higher.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 407. National Cinemas. 3 Credit Hours.

Selected films from Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America will be studied in relation to their diverse social, political and cultural contexts.
Requisite: Junior Standing or Higher.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall.

CCA 408. Women, Media, and Popular Culture. 3 Credit Hours.

Examination of film, media, and gender representation from the perspective of feminist theory and cultural studies. Students explore the many ways that women have been portrayed, and how they have portrayed themselves, within popular culture.
Requisite: Junior Standing or Higher.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

CCA 409. Legal Aspects of Motion Pictures. 3 Credit Hours.

The law, contracts, and negotiating techniques of the business affairs aspects of the production of motion pictures.
Junior standing.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

CCA 416. Film History Seminar. 3 Credit Hours.

In the history of world cinema, there have been a number of movements or schools that have had a significant impact. Each semester this course is offered, it will focus on three such cinematic movements or schools. Representative films will be studied in relation to their diverse historical, social, cultural and political contexts.
Prerequisite: CCA 206 Or Junior Standing Or Higher.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 418. Seminar in Documentary Film History: Cinéma-vérité. 3 Credit Hours.

The primary focus of this course will be on the half-century old school or tradition of documentary filmmaking associated with the terms “Cinéma-vérité” and “direct cinema”. Through close analysis of selected classic and contemporary documentaries, the class will explore their historical significance, their aspirations and achievements as films, and their ways of addressing the aesthetic, epistemological, political and moral issues that inevitably arise when filmmakers take their sync-sound camera into the world and undertake to film life as it is really lived.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 419. Seminar in Documentary Production. 3 Credit Hours.

The Seminar in Documentary Production is an advanced documentary class for SoC students who want to polish an existing project or develop a new project based on a detailed proposal.
Prerequisite: CCA 355 or CCA 458 or JMM 541 or permission of instructor.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

CCA 426. Advanced Screenwriting. 3 Credit Hours.

A continuation of CCA 326. Study of, and practice in, writing feature length, fictional narrative motion picture scripts. Attention is given to cinematic structure, the development of character, and its presentation on the screen. Emphasis is placed on bringing the script to a completed draft.
Prerequisite: CCA 326.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 429. Advanced TV Writing. 3 Credit Hours.

This course explores how to create, format, and write the original Television Pilot and treatment. The class will cover TV pilot format, length, structure as well as techniques in creating TV characters and situations for both comedy an d dramatic episodic TV.
Prerequisite: CCA 329.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 431. Critical Studies in American Television. 3 Credit Hours.

This course familiarizes students with critical approaches to American television, focusing on how television's generic, narrative, aesthetic, and ideological structures have developed and changed over time.
Prerequisite: CCA 206 or CCA 329 or Junior Standing or Higher.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 451. Advanced Filmmaking Workshop. 3 Credit Hours.

Students hone their skills and collectively produce a final polished film.
Prerequisite: CCA 351.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 455. Science Documentary: Autism. 3 Credit Hours.

Students will be exposed to both the history and cutting-edge research surrounding autism spectrum disorder. Students will connect with people in the local community – to lend these issues a face and context. This course brings together student citizens across science, communication, and education to collaborate on content intended to reach audiences on multiple platforms.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall.

CCA 456. Advanced Cinematography. 3 Credit Hours.

Advanced work with camera, lighting, and grip equipment on exercises and projects.
Prerequisite: CCA 356.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall.

CCA 457. Advanced Editing. 3 Credit Hours.

Advanced concepts in aesthetics and theories of picture and sound editing, mixing, color correction, and finishing techniques.
Prerequisite: CCA 357.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 458. Documentary Production. 3 Credit Hours.

Students produce two short digital documentaries and explore various approaches to the documentary film.
Prerequisite: CCA 151.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 462. Motion Picture Marketing and Distribution. 3 Credit Hours.

Students study economic and marketing concepts pertaining to the production and distribution of motion pictures.
Prerequisite: CCA 364.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 465. Creative Producing. 3 Credit Hours.

Students will discover what their creative voice is as a producer; sharpen their communication skills (networking, pitching, coverage & notes); and will learn the nuts and bolts of what a producer does.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall.

CCA 469. Motion Picture Internship. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Internships provide valuable experiences in a professional setting (such as a business, organization, or institution.) Students will identify and pursue opportunities based on growth potential and advancing professional goals. All internships must be approved by a faculty advisor who will oversee the experience.
Pre-Requisite: Sophomore Standing or Higher.
Components: IND.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

CCA 489. Projects in Screenwriting. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Independent Studies are voluntary agreements between individual faculty members and individual students, in which students complete original creative work or directed research. Since, Independent Study is intended to expand a student’s work beyond the regular curriculum, it may not be used to duplicate course offerings. In order to register for the course, students must seek the agreement of a faculty mentor, complete the Independent Study Contract, and secure the approval of the Department Chair prior to enrolling. In order to receive a grade for this course, students must submit all the required materials to their faculty mentors by the last official day of classes in the semester in which they are enrolled. Faculty mentors must submit their grade to the Department Chair by the last official day of the semester in which the student enrolled.
Requisite: Sophomore Standing or Higher.
Components: THI.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

CCA 494. Special Topics in Cinematic Arts. 3 Credit Hours.

Prescribed study and supervised work with practitioners in motion pictures.
Requisite: Sophmore Status And Cumulative GPA 2.5.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

CCA 499. Projects and Directed Research. 1-3 Credit Hours.

Independent Studies are voluntary agreements between individual faculty members and individual students, in which students complete original creative work or directed research. Since, Independent Study is intended to expand a student’s work beyond the regular curriculum, it may not be used to duplicate course offerings. In order to register for the course, students must seek the agreement of a faculty mentor, complete the Independent Study Contract, and secure the approval of the Department Chair prior to enrolling. In order to receive a grade for this course, students must submit all the required materials to their faculty mentors by the last official day of classes in the semester in which they are enrolled. Faculty mentors must submit their grade to the Department Chair by the last official day of the semester in which the student enrolled.
Requisite: Sophomore Standing or Higher.
Components: THI.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, & Summer.

CCA 514. Motion Picture Studio. 3 Credit Hours.

Students polish their final cuts for film festival submissions, professional consideration, and portfolio.
Motion Picture Major and Senior Standing.
Components: STU.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.

CCA 523. Advanced 3D Character Design and Motion Capture. 3 Credit Hours.

This course covers the 3D game art development pipeline from modeling, texturing, rigging and animation to motion capture, and special effects.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 526. Adaptation. 3 Credit Hours.

This course will examine the craft and techniques of adapting sources such as novels, short stories, plays, articles, comic books, Shakespeare to the screen.
Prerequisite: CCA 126.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Spring.

CCA 550. Motion Graphics and Compositing. 3 Credit Hours.

Methods, techniques and aesthetics of 2D computer animation and compositing including animated text, title design, and green screen.
Prerequisite: CCA 206.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 551. Advanced Motion Graphics and Compositing. 3 Credit Hours.

Extend the 2D skills of students who have taken CCA 550 to 3D motion graphics and animation. Emphasis on title design and animation.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 553. Advanced Motion Picture Marketing and Distribution. 3 Credit Hours.

Advanced marketing considerations in the distribution of motion pictures.
Prerequisite: CCA 462.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 566. Character and Dialogue. 3 Credit Hours.

An examination of the craft and techniques of creating original characters and dialogue.
Pre-Requisite: CCA 126.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall.

CCA 594. Special Topics in Cinematic Arts. 3 Credit Hours.

This course subject matter varies according to announced special topic. See class schedule for details.
Junior standing.
Components: WKS.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Offered by Announcement Only.

CCA 595. Directing Techniques II. 3 Credit Hours.

To build a more advanced set of professional skills and practices through scene work, shooting, and collaboration.
Prerequisite: CCA 251.
Components: LEC.
Grading: GRD.
Typically Offered: Fall & Spring.