The course, which has been running since 2000, is characterized by a cultural studies and media theory focus and combines theoretical and creative knowledge and proficiency in relation to the media. The main goal of the course is to give students skills for the analysis, creation and criticism of the media, as well as for content-based media management with a basis in media law.
In particular, the course deals with the foundations, structures and products of the media. Media aesthetics and media history are especially important, as are the processes of public and intercultural communication within Europe. The conditions, appearance and consequences of the media in a cultural and social context also play a role. The development of creative concepts and production in the media (especially digital media) is a further aspect of the BA course.
The course is divided into thirteen modules, all of which have to be completed within a particular period of time:
Module 1: Introduction to Media Cultural Studies
This introductory module deals with the basics of media theory. It aims to give students an overview of the field and an insight into the most important theories.
Module 2: Technical and Creative Principles of Digital Media
This module gives students a foundation in the technical and practical aspects of the digital media, as well as a creative introduction into the methods of picture processing and website design.
Module 3: Media Law and Cultural Media Economy
The aim of this module is to provide a basic knowledge of the economics of media projects, the management of independent work, and also production management in radio, film, TV and agencies, etc. It also provides knowledge of European media law and the development of a basic understanding of social, political and theoretical issues in relation to the media.
Module 4: European Cultural History and Media Cultural History
This module aims to give students an understanding of Europe as a cultural and traditional area. The study of cultural and media history in lectures and seminars with specific media histories should give students a solid grasp of the basic historical character of the media, as well as its technological development and practices.
Module 5: Media Art
This module is designed to give students an overview into the most important aspects of aesthetics and the development and analysis of art from a media studies perspective. An understanding of the close connection between art and the media processes involved in art is the aim.
Module 6: Theories, forms and histories of knowledge
This module includes basic questions of the theory of knowledge (epistemology) and the history of knowledge. Basal media representations, such as images, sound, signs and language are presented and analysed, including the theory and history of visual media, sound studies and media philosophy. The combining and acting of these elements in new technological environments and circuits, links the basal reflections to complex contexts. In this way, this module deepens the knowledge of module 1 about mediation of media studies as research of mediality within the field of cultural studies.
Module 7: Forms of Medial Production
Alongside acquiring knowledge of the most important analytical concepts such as theatricality and performitivity, this module deals with the use of these concepts and methods when considering individual classical and mass media genres.
Module 8: Concepts and Forms of Media Design
At the centre of this module is the planning and development of projects in the digital media. The aim is to give students the conceptual and practical skills they need to develop digital media, and deeper understanding to deal with them.
Module 9: Medial Projects
This module gives high priority to acquiring media technology (i.e. lab and studio practice) and media creative orientation combined with experimental creative work. The module also conveys team work abilities in heterogeneous groups as required in professional practice and promotes communicative / collaborative processes with other disciplines.
Module 10: Interdisciplinary Supplementary Studies
This module aims to broaden the interests of students and provide them with a focal point for their studies, and can be chosen from modules 1-9 or from another course at any higher education institution involved in the programme that makes sense.
Module 11: Free-choice Project
This module consists of the development and carrying out of projects chosen by the students. The aim is to develop small independent research plans or projects, involving collaboration with other institutions and placements organized with the students’ own initiative. The project is supervised in terms of research and theoretical and practical support.
Module 12: Internship
During the course of the programme students must spend at least six weeks as interns in the field of European media studies (eight weeks for the Master’s programme. It is recommended that part of that be abroad).
Module 13: Colloquium
The colloquium especially supports the students in selecting topics and literature reviews and developing research questions as well as structuring their assignments. Students are able to conduct a scientific / artistic topic independently.
The course consists of theoretical and practical seminars, with the emphasis on project work. In the course of the programme students must gain at least 160 points in modules 1-11 (of which 90 are graded)
In addition to this, students must spend six weeks in an internship in the field of media studies (eight weeks for the Master’s programme with a period abroad).
In the sixth semester students are expected to hand in either a theoretical work or a creative work with a written part (with a preparation period of nine weeks), which is to be developed within the context of a colloquium and which, after corrections, is presented with an oral defence (12 points).
If this is successfully achieved, the title of ‘Bachelor of Arts’ is gained. If students complete the course with a grade of 2.0 or higher, they can apply for the Master’s programme in European Media Studies
Graduates of the programme could work in the following areas: Publishing and print media (arts sections, media-specific and scientific programmes), radio and TV (editing, planning and criticism), internet (online editing), hypermedia (editing for knowledge management), event management (festivals), editing for media aesthetic subjects (DVD and CD ROM projects, TV films, video production, short films), as well as jobs in advertising and international media management (material and idea development for ‘media events’ and staging them), media production (development of formats and format analysis), media services and independent media activities. The new media need programme administrators and developers with a deep understanding of media history and aesthetics and who are in a position to recognize and describe the effects of the media of social consciousness. There is also the whole range of media research at universities. In the face of the rapid changes in the media, training in the media cannot be aimed at a specific idea of a job. Rather students should be given skills that allow them to fit into new kinds of jobs in these areas as quickly and competently as possible.