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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Robertson Lee Allen
BIS 313
Bothell Campus

Issues in Media Studies

Examines a variety of issues involved in understanding different forms of media and their impact on our lives, in contexts spanning from local to global, using a wide range of theoretical, disciplinary, and methodological approaches.

Class description

***FALL 2013*** Details are still forthcoming, but this course will generally focus on critical analytical approaches to video games.

The primary course text will be "An Introduction to Game Studies" by Frans Marya: http://www.amazon.com/Introduction-Game-Studies-Frans-Mayra/dp/141293446X

Contemporary interdisciplinary approaches to video game studies and central concepts to game studies will be explored throughout the course.

Being a "hard core" gamer is ***NOT*** a prerequisite for the course, and gaming ability/devotion does not ensure student success in the course. Far more critical to student success is a willingness to engage in thoughtful discussions that, perhaps, may challenge student assumptions about games and the current state of the gaming industry.

***WINTER 2014*** War and media technologies have nearly always been interconnected in one way or another, but in this era of instantaneous news and interactive entertainment, these connections have risen to the forefront in the daily lives of a variety of media consumers. Why is militarized violence such a compelling topic of entertainment for many, and why is it a profitable industry? How true are the virtual representations of war in media products to the actual practices of war―or are these becoming one in the same thing? This course attempts to address these and other questions by exploring the variety of current and historical relations between the military and entertainment industries. The media and entertainment technologies we will investigate range across a wide spectrum, and will include popular video games, war simulations, air shows, sports, films, television, youtube, and military training/recruiting technologies. Throughout the quarter we will be interacting with and critically viewing a variety of these military entertainment media. Course readings are selected on their ability to informatively structure our understandings about these representations of war and militarized violence.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

lectures, student presentations, films, small group work, class discussion

Recommended preparation

For Digital Game Studies (Fall 2013), students are required to have taken BIS 236 (Interactive Media) or another advanced MCS course that touches on games specifically.

Class assignments and grading

Quizzes on readings (4-5); One reading analysis; Student presentation or discussion facilitation; Final paper/research project; Class participation


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Robertson Lee Allen
Date: 08/05/2013