Assignments & Student Work

The Video Essay Thesis Project

Designed for Television & American Culture.

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This assignment overview outlines the staggered assignments I use to guide students toward completing a 15-minute video essay that presents original research on American television. Please feel free to reach out for the full assignment guidelines mentioned in this overview.

Video Essay Assignment: The Production Code

Designed for Queer Film & Television.

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For the first project, you will create a 5-8min video essay about queer visibility during the Production Code era, accompanied by a 1,500-2,000-word statement that relates your video essay to our readings.

Sample student projects: Do We Really Know All About Eve? by Johanna Cameron and Some Like It Hot: Challenging Heteronormativity Through Comedy by Brendan Nagle

Video Essay Assignment: Formal Analysis

Designed for Media Design and Criticism. Students completed three workshops on video editing and created three videographic exercises before this assignments.

For this project, you will create a 5min video essay about one stylistic element in a film, e.g. editing, camerawork, staging, sound, lighting, costume design, narrative structure, genre, etc. You also need to incorporate what you have learned about videographic criticism into the design of your video essay.

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Sample student projects:

Critical Reading Response Assignment

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Designed for Media Theory.

Reading and understanding theory is a marathon, not a sprint. Consequently, you will continuously engage with theory through written responses. While each response is short, the accumulative value of the responses makes them the most important assignment of the course. Do not underestimate them.

Sample response paper included in assignment guidelines.

Comics Research Project

Designed for Introduction to Rhetoric & Media Studies (Spring 2019 version).

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As a way to wrap up the course, you will give a short (8min) formal presentation to the class. Your presentation introduces your research and analysis of one comic. You also need to design a visual aid (Google slides is easiest to access and share). Your presentation should draw on the research you have done; you should also draw on concepts and theories we have studied.

Locate Yourself

Originally created for Introduction to Digital Media.  {download assignment}

One of the goals of this class is to interrogate the claim that the user is in charge of the web in our current era of digital media. Over the first weeks of the semester, students read and discussed various layers of digital media that support or disrupt this claim of user sovereignty.

In order to deepen students’ understanding of the various layers and infrastructures that make up digital media, this midterm develops a cohesive picture of a student’s location within the micro and macro structures of digital media. Students present their analyses in a creative digital format featuring text, images, and videos.

Annotated Clip and Case Study

Originally created for Queer Film and Television. {download assignment}

Each week, one or more of you will present an additional film or TV program that corresponds to the topic of the week. In addition to the in-class presentation, you will curate a clip in the style of In Media Res. That is, you select a scene from a film or TV program and analyze it in 450 words. The clip and analysis will become part of our class archive on our NYU Stream channel.

Transmedia Storytelling Assignment

Originally created for Transmedia Television. {download assignment}

The goal of this assignment is the creation of your own transmedia storytelling experience. You can create this experience either for a current or past TV show or for a TV show that you design. This assignment has three stages: a draft, a pitch, and the submission of the final project.

Sample Student Projects: Boy Meets World | Parks and Recreation

Global TV Research Assignment

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The goal of your research project is to carry out an independent research project on global television. In terms of topics, you could work on the international distribution of American TV, on a local case study in a country of your choice, or on the adaptation or broadcasting of international programming in the United States. You can also come up with another topic not covered by these suggestions. Your project can take the form of a traditional essay or a video, photography, remix, website, online exhibit, etc.

Sample student project: Survival Reality TV: Korean Wave Edition


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