Graduate Certificate in Media Studies

The Certificate Program in Media Studies allows students enrolled in other Rutgers University Ph.D. programs to earn a Certificate in Media Studies. The program allows students to familiarize themselves with the theories, methods, and content of the field of media studies, including such subfields as cultural studies, the political economy of media, journalism and media history, technology and digital innovation, media and politics, promotional culture, and science communication.

The certificate program provides students from any discipline with foundational knowledge towards teaching courses in media studies or courses in their own disciplines that have a specific focus on media. It also gives them the skills and knowledge to make media-related subjects a central part of their scholarly research and to supplement their own disciplinary expertise with a facility in contemporary issues of media. Students in the certificate program benefit from engagement with the expertise of the field’s leading researchers.

The certificate program consists of nine credits. At least six credits must be taken from the core course offerings of the Media Studies area in the School of Communication & Information (SC&I) Ph.D. program. Three additional credits may be taken in cognate courses offered in other departments that deal substantially with media issues.

Admission Requirements

Doctoral students enrolled in any Rutgers program are eligible for the Certificate in Media Studies. Admission to the certificate program shall be granted by the Media Studies area coordinator or department chair, after consultation with the chair or graduate studies director of the student’s home department. Applicants must have completed one semester of coursework in SGS and maintained a B average. Ph.D. students who are interested in earning the Certificate in Media Studies should complete a registration form and email it to the Media Studies Ph.D. Area Coordinator. Ph.D. students who are interested in earning the Certificate in Media Studies should complete a registration form and email it to the Media Studies Ph.D. Area Coordinator.

Curriculum and Required Credits

The main curriculum of the Certificate Program shall be the existing course offerings in the Media Studies area of the SC&I interdisciplinary Ph.D. program. It shall be supplemented by approved “cognate” courses offered by other academic departments at Rutgers University.

To obtain a Certificate in Media Studies, students must:

  • Apply to the program and receive approval from the Media Studies area coordinator.
  • Take two core Media Studies graduate courses offered through SC&I Ph.D. program. These shall be regular classroom courses, not practicums, independent studies, or other forms of individualized instruction.
  • Take one additional course either in Media Studies or from a list of approved cognate courses in SC&I or another Rutgers program. Student admission to a cognate course depends on the permission of course instructor.
  • Submit, upon successful completion of the requisite courses, a letter confirming completion to the Media Studies area coordinator, who will approve it and report results to area faculty and Ph.D. director.

Core Media Studies Graduate Courses

(note: not all courses are offered every year)

6:194:631 Media Theory (special permission from instructor required)
16:194:664 Media & Culture
16:194:663 Media History
16:194:641 Media Law & Policy
16:194:665 Media & Politics
16:194:662 Media Criticism
16:194:666 Social Construction of News

Special Topics (i.e., 16:194:680-684, Topics in Media Studies I-V)

Additional Media Studies electives are offered as Special Topics courses and vary by semester. Recent offerings have included Media, Race & Politics; Feminism & Media; Media & Globalization; Children, Adolescents & Media; Technology & Class in the 20th Century; Experiential Media.

Cognate Courses

The list below is a prospective list of existing courses, taught elsewhere in the School of Graduate Studies, that might qualify as “cognate courses.” Students in the certificate program may also petition to allow the inclusion of specific non-Media Studies courses that are not listed.

School of Communication and Information

16:194:628 Social Media
16:194:633 Mediated Communication

Library and Information Studies
16:194:67x The History of Books, Records, Documents in Print and Electronic Environments

School of Arts and Sciences (or other schools at Rutgers University, New Brunswick)

(organized by the program to facilitate student registration)

16:070:541 Anthropology and Cultural Studies
16:070:626 Visual Anthropology

Art History
16:082:658 Problems in Race and Representation
16:082:659 Problems in the History of Photography

Cinema Studies
16:940:660/16:195:522 Embodied Cinemas: The Practice of the Theory in Spanish/Argentine Film
16:940:598:01/16:195:517:03 Revolutionary Project(ion)s: Latin American Filmmaking and the Theorization of Engagement
16:195:522 Film Theory and World Cinema

16:350:527 Psychoanalytic Criticism

16:510:513 Colloquium in Cultural History
16:510:519 Colloquium in Intellectual History

16:730:501 Survey in Epistemology

Political Science
16:790:524 Mass Media and Politics
16:790:554 Collective Protest and Social Movements
16:790:582 Public Opinion

16:830:611 Perception

16:920:571 Technology and Society
16:920:571 Time, History, and Memory
16:920:572 Culture, Cognition, and the Media

Learning Goals for Students

  • Attain and maintain a foundational level of knowledge in the theories, methods, and content of the field of Media Studies.
  • Demonstrate critical thinking and the ability to evaluate current research in Media Studies.
  • Acquire the skills and knowledge to supplement their own disciplinary expertise with a facility in contemporary issues of media.

Media Studies Core Faculty:
Melissa Aronczyk
Jack Bratich
Lauren Feldman
David Greenberg
Amy Jordan
Susan Keith
Chenjerai Kumanyika
Deepa Kumar
Dafna Lemish
Regina Marchi
John Pavlik
Caitlin Petre
Khadijah White
Todd Wolfson

Media Studies Ph.D. Area Coordinator
Melissa Aronczyk

School of Communication & Information Ph.D. Director:
Jen Theiss