Beginning in spring 2022, a graduate minor in media studies will be available to students in fields across the Graduate School at Cornell University. Drawing on the Graduate School's long tradition of fostering interdisciplinary study, the new minor is the most recent project of the Media Studies Initiative, which sponsors an undergraduate minor, monthly colloquia, and interdisciplinary graduate working groups. In the pandemic year 2020-21, the initiative staged the online Media Objects conference.
The foundation of the new graduate minor is the seminar, "Thinking Media Studies," to be taught for the first time in spring 2022 by Professors Nick Salvato (PMA) and Roger Moseley (Music), scholars whose writing has focused on television and video games, respectively. The new seminar is inspired by the popular undergraduate course "Thinking Media," which brings together numerous faculty teaching a range of media, from the earliest writing systems to digital art, media, and information systems.
To complete the graduate minor, students will enroll in Thinking Media Studies and choose a faculty member to recommend further classes and guide specialized research.
“One of the great strengths of conversations in media studies at Cornell is how genuinely, robustly interdisciplinary they are,” said Salvato. “I see the new graduate seminar, 'Thinking Media Studies,' as parallel to 'Thinking Media' in certain ways. We will also engage the writing of our colleagues and invite them to join some of our discussions. But, in a way that is more unique to graduate instruction, we will also have a kind of meta-critical conversation about how and why some fields of inquiry do or don't share a grounding definition of media.”
The new class and minor aim to attract students from humanities disciplines, information science, communication, science and technology studies, and across the university. More information is available on the Media Studies website.