Media Arts Courses

Alison Humphrey's Shadowpox
Alison Humphrey’s Shadowpox

Students admitted prior to 2021-2022 stay with their old requirements, but can choose to switch to the new requirements if desired.


Shows the possible courses you can take within the program and recommendations from other departments.

Media Arts Course Descriptions (subject to change)

FA/CMA 1001 3.00   Making Media

Course Description:

Offers a production course designed to introduce students to a wide array of media industries through hands-on exercises in lectures and tutorials. The course demonstrates how cutting-edge research in cinema and media studies is an indispensable part of the practice of producing media in a changing world. Course credit exclusion: FA/FILM 1010 3.00. Degree requirement for Cinema and Media Studies and Media Arts majors. Open to non-majors by permission of the department.

FA/CMA 1101 8.00   Media Practice I

Course Description:

Media Practice I is an introductory practical studio course that allows Media Arts students to recognize and realize the potential of making short videos for a variety of digital platforms. Concepts and techniques of video production for the web, multimedia and mobile media platforms are addressed, from the workflow of a project to the editing, sound, and final output formats. Assigned projects provide students with the opportunity to explore the creative and communicative potential of very short video forms through the completion of assigned creative work. Technical demonstrations and workshops provide students with a wide range of versatile tools and approaches through which ideas may be explored and developed. Studio production and experimentation complement readings, discussions, and viewings, resulting in a more thorough understanding of historical and contemporary discourses surrounding the mobile video image.


PANF1100A 1.0 Video & Sound Editing with DaVinci Resolve

FA/CMA 1123 3.00   Writing for Games & Interactive Media I

Course Description:

This course introduces students to the basic principles of writing for games and interactive media, including core concepts of storytelling, and the ways in which interactive writing departs from the traditional. From social media storytelling to branching fictions, video and text games, and non-linear interactive websites, theories of storytelling and gameplay (narratology and ludology) will inform learning through hands-on, project-based work designing characters, branching storylines, and environmental storyworlds. No pre-requisites. Note: Required of all first-year BFA Media Arts majors. Enrolment is limited to BA and BFA film majors.

FA/CMA 1400 6.00   Film Art: An Introduction

Course Description:

Introduces the aesthetics, theory and history of film. Lectures concentrate on the elements of film, including narrative structure, visual composition and the uses of sound and editing. Documentary, experimental and feature films are encompassed. Note: Required of all Film majors and minors. Course credit exclusion: FA/FILM 1401 6.00. Note: Required of all first-year BA and BFA Film majors. Enrolment is limited to BA and BFA Film majors.


FA/CMA 2101 8.00   Media Practice II

Course Description:

Introduces students to diverse platforms and innovative production modes in media arts. Using an innovative modular structure, the course explores a range of contemporary media practices through lectures and workshops where students are engaged through continuous making and reflecting. The course is team taught by CMS faculty supported by guest lectures by leading practitioners and media artists.


PANF1100B 1.0 3D with Blender

FA / CMA 2841 3.0 Digital Culture

Course Description:

Explores the history, theory, and practice of digital media through an examination of contemporary practice and theories of digital art, social media, gaming culture, film, new media, animation, and software studies. Prerequisites: FA/FILM 1400 6.00, FA/FILM 1401 6.00, or permission of the Instructor. Open to non-majors.

PLUS Six Credits from:

FA/CMA 2200 3.00   Early Cinema to the Coming of Sound: 1895 – 1930

Course Description:

Examines the emergence of cinema as a technology, cultural experience, economic structure, and means of artistic expression. Prerequisite: FA/FILM 1400 9.00 or 6.00.

FA/CMA 2205 3.00   Exploring Media Industries

Course Description:

Exploring Media Industries develops a comprehensive critical examination of how media industry organization shapes and influences creative practice, mass culture, and society to prepare the student for both scholarly and professional careers in the media industries.

FA/CMA 2230 3.00   Film and Television as Mass Culture, 1920s-1960s

Course Description:

Presents histories and theories that focus on the role of film and television as mass culture from the 1920s to 1960s including their relationship to everyday life, social and power relations, and cultural practices in the period. Prerequisite: FA/FILM 1400 9.00 or 6.00.

FA/CMA 2123 3.00   Writing for Games & Interactive Media II

Course Description:

From social media storytelling to branching fictions, video and text games, and non-linear interactive websites, theories of storytelling and gameplay (narratology and ludology) will inform learning through hands-on, project-based work designing characters, branching storylines, and environmental storyworlds. Pre-requisites: Film1123.


FA/CMA 3101 8.00   Media Practice III

Course Description:

Media Practice III builds on media fundamentals introduced in Media Practice II with a more in depth concentration on three thematic modules. Thematic modules might include: Working with Archives; Social Activism; New Narrative; Toronto: Site Specific; Collaborative Community Practice; Projecting the Future; Dreamworlds; Immersive Reality; Truth and Reconciliation. Taking advantage of the rich cultural life of the city, these modules may be developed in conjunction with specific gallery, museum or curated film and media shows and are intended to encourage students to engage with diverse communities, locations and events within the GTA.


PANF2100A 1.0 Unreal Engine Introduction

PLUS 12 credits from:

FA/CMA 3103 3.00   The Interactive Documentary

Course Description:

Studies the theory and practice of interactive web documentaries, participatory online projects, and docu-games as these are reshaping the way we tell, produce and distribute documentary experience in the digital age. Prerequisite: FA/FILM 2200 and FA/FILM2230, or permission of the department.

FA/CMA 3123 3.00   Transmedia Storytelling

Course Description:

Provides students who have completed first- and second- year screenwriting courses with a focus on strategies for developing complex stories that can be told across multiple media platforms (film, television, web, mobile, etc.) incorporating elements of interactivity. Prerequisite: FA/FILM 2120 6.00 or FA/FILM 2121 6.00 Open to non-Screenwriting Majors with permission of Department.

FA/CMA 3200 3.00   New Waves in Cinema and Media Studies

Course Description:

Examines histories and theories in post-WWII global cinema including the rise of new wave national cinemas, post-colonial film, new forms of documentary and experimental film and the theoretical and historical texts that inspired their emergence. Prerequisites: FA/FILM 2200 3.00, FA/FILM 2230 3.00.

FA/CMA 3230 3.00  Contemporary Directions in Cinema and Media Studies: 1980s – present

Course Description:

Introduces students to contemporary developments in cinema and media theory from post-structuralism to theories of new media. Prerequisites of FA/FILM 2200 3.00 and FA/FILM 2230 3.00.

FA/CMA 3401 3.00  Cinemas in Canada

Course Description:

Provides a study of work by selected contemporary Canadian filmmakers working in a variety of areas: Anglophone, Francophone, multi-cultural and aboriginal fiction film traditions; documentary; and the avant garde. Also discussed are the issues surrounding the production and distribution of film in Canada today. The course is designed to work in conjunction with The Independents, a series of speakers and screenings offered by the Film Department. Required for all Film majors. Prerequisite: FA/FILM 1400 6.00 or permission of the Film Department.

FA / CMA 3840 3.0 Games and Media

Course Description:

Examines the history of expanded forms of cinematic narrative and interactivity within an intermedial context that includes games, environments and computers. Explores the relation between cinema and games, including non-linear modes of storytelling in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Open to non-majors

FA/CMA 3845 3.00   Sonic Cinema: Designing Sound for Expanded Cinema

Course Description:

This class will examine the nature of sound design for expanded forms of cinema. Open to non-majors.

FA/PANF 3854 3.00   Virtual Worldbuilding: Methods and Issues

Course Description:

In this course you will learn how virtual worlds have the potential to change actual worlds and how to use digital media technologies to create possible world experiences. Open to non-majors.

PANF 3852 3.0 Virtual Cinematography: Blending Read and Digital Worlds

PANF 3851 3.0 Virtual Environment Design: Building animated, generative, responsive spaces for performance, interaction & cinema

PANF 3853 3.0 Motion Capture: Performance and Interactivity


6 credits between:

FA/FILM 4101 6.00   Media Practice IV: Fourth Year Projects

Fourth Year Projects is the culminating course in the Media Arts curriculum that builds on the media fundamentals introduced in Media Practice I and developed in Media Practice II. Using a student-led approach, the focus is on developing a working prototype as the focal point of a creative portfolio that showcases a variety of skills. The possibilities range from interactive stories or documentaries to AR and VR games, podcasts, installations, and web projects, developed either individually or collaboratively. With guidance and mentorship, students will complete a substantial creative work on the platform of their choice. Open to majors only.

FA/FILM 4191 3.00 or 6.0   Field Placement for Cinema & Media Studies/Media Arts

Course Description:

An experiential education field placement course specifically for students in the BA in Cinema & Media Studies and BFA in Media Arts. Students undertake field placements in moving image media industry sites, supervised and guided by AMPD faculty and staff. Open to majors only. Prerequisites: 60 credits and enrollment in the Honours BA in Cinema & Media Studies or BFA in Media Arts (i.e. students are eligible to take Field Placements in Year 3 and Year 4 of their degrees).

NOTE: Film 4901 6.0 is currently being run through PANF3999 / 4999 Cross Campus Capstone Classroom (C4).

For more information on Fourth Year Media Arts choices, please see