The Master of/ Magisteriate in Arts (Media Studies)

Program Director – Dr. Charles R. Acland

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A Word from the Director

MA Program Director, Dr. Charles R. Acland
Photo © Concordia University

Located within the renowned Department of Communication Studies of Concordia University, the MA in Media Studies has been one of North America’s best Masters programs in the field for the last thirty years. We offer a unique and challenging course of study, providing students with an interdisciplinary formation commencing with core training in communication theory and media research methods. Students also take our media studies seminar, which provides a forum for discussion and skills training for full scholarly engagement with the field of media studies. From there our students move on to studies and research in such areas as media history, race and ethnicity, political economy, community activism, video games, cultural policy, feminist media, technology, audience practices, alternative media, film and television, popular and visual culture, and development.

Typically, a new cohort of MA students consists of about 15 individuals. With 23 tenured and tenure-track faculty in Communication Studies, we take pride in our close and individualized mentorship of our students. Our research culture is exceptionally active, and our faculty are engaged in many major research initiatives (e.g. Mobile Media Lab, Feminist Media Studies Lab, Technology-Art-Games [TAG], Advanced Research Team in History and Epistemology of Moving Image Studies [ARTHEMIS], and Adventures in Research Creation [ARC]). These and other cutting-edge faculty research projects create a vibrant intellectual, creative, and collegial environment, where conferences, talks, screenings, performances, and events are plentiful. You will be swept into this excitement, and for some there will be opportunities to act as research assistants to some of the faculty members. I invite you to take a look at our faculty webpages for an idea of the rich diversity of innovative and award-winning research and professional achievement housed within our department.

We measure the success of our program by the demonstrated contributions and impact of our graduates. Many of our alumni become professionals in media and cultural industries, working in a variety of capacities in digital media, film, television, gaming, radio and the arts, or continue on to doctoral programs in Canada and abroad. Take a look at the theses and projects undertaken over the last few years to see the possibilities that a MA in Media Studies can offer you.

If you are interested in developing expertise in the contemporary issues, history, and theories about our media culture, and in studying with some of the very best international scholars in their chosen research domains, we encourage you to take a close look at our MA in Media Studies. We offer four options for both full- and part-time studies: a thesis option that allows students to conduct a sustained research program; an innovative research-creation option designed for media-makers to conduct research primarily via media production; a major research paper option that includes additional course work; and a course-based option for those who wish to carry out a program comprised solely of course work.

Our students are highly motivated, creative, have excelled in their undergraduate studies, and are able to articulate a clear program of work and research interests. If this sounds like you, then you should consider our MA in Media Studies.

Sincerely,
 
 
Dr. Charles R. Acland
Professor and Concordia University Research Chair in Communication Studies
Graduate Program Director, MA in Media Studies
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MA in Media Studies Courses 2013 – 14
MA in Media Studies Courses
MA Thesis Listing
MA Thesis and MA Project Deadlines

2015 – 2016 APPLICATION DEADLINES

Completed applications (including transcripts and letters of reference) are due February 1st, 2015. Admission is done annually. Students must enter the program in fall term.

How to Apply

Please refer to our Masters Application Page.

Admission Requirements

Normally the candidate must have a bachelor’s degree in communication (or equivalent in a cognate area) with a minimum of 3.00 GPA. Experience in media or a media-related field is an asset. Applicants whose prior degrees are not from an English or French-speaking university are required to submit TOEFL scores. The minimum TOEFL iBT score required is 106 (or 623 for TOEFL PBT) or 7.5/9 IELTS. Qualified applicants requiring prerequisite courses may be required to take up to 12 credits in addition to and as part of the regular graduate program. Applicants with deficiencies in their undergraduate preparation will normally be required to take qualifying course(s) as deemed appropriate by the program. Credits allowed for previous graduate work must be determined by the department and the university prior to entry to the program.

Requirements for the Degree

1. Credits. Fully-qualified candidates are required to complete a minimum of 45 credits, including the three core program courses.

2. Residence. The minimum residence requirement is one year (3 terms) of full-time study, or the equivalent in part-time study.

3. Courses. COMS 600 Communication Theory (3 credits) is required for all students in the first year of the program. Students may enter one of the four options I, II, III or IV outlined below. Students elect an option after their first term of study with permission of the program director. The project option III is restricted to students with adequate and appropriate media experience. The program does not provide media training.

Academic Regulations

1. GPA Requirements. The academic progress of students is monitored on a periodic basis. To be permitted to continue in the program, students must obtain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.00 based on a minimum of 12 credits. Students whose GPA falls below 3.00 are considered to be on academic probation during the following period. Students whose GPA falls below 3.00 for two consecutive review periods are withdrawn from the program.

2. C Rule. Normally a student receiving a grade of C in two courses will be required to withdraw from the program. Students withdrawing for this reason may petition the M.A. (Media Studies) Committee for special consideration. In cases of extenuating circumstances probationary continuation in the program will be considered.

3. F Rule. Students who receive a failing grade in the course of their studies will be withdrawn from the program. Students may apply for re-admission. Students who receive another failing grade after re-admission will be withdrawn from the program and will not be considered for re-admission.

4. Time Limit. All work for a master’s/magisteriate degree for full-time students must be completed within 12 terms (4 years) from the time of initial registration in the program at Concordia University; for part-time students the time limit is 15 terms (5 years).

5. Graduation Requirement. In order to graduate, students must have completed all program requirements and attained a cumulative GPA of at least 3.00.

Program Options

Master of/Magisteriate in Arts with Thesis (Option I)

Candidates are required to take the following:

1. 9 credits: COMS 600 – Communication Theory; COMS 605 – Media Research Methods I; COMS 694 – Thesis/Research Creation Project Proposal;

2. 3 credits: COMS 610 – Media Studies Seminar;

3. 12 credits, chosen in consultation with the student’s faculty advisor and approved by the department’s graduate studies committee. If approved by the department’s graduate studies committee, and with the permission of the department concerned, up to 3 of these credits may be taken in cognate graduate courses offered by other departments in the university;

4. 21 credits, COMS 695 – Thesis.

Master of/Magisteriate in Arts with Courses (Option II)

Candidates are required to take the following:

1. 6 credits: COMS 600 – Communication Theory; COMS 605 – Media Research Methods I;

2. 3 credits: COMS 610 – Media Studies Seminar;

3. 36 credits, chosen in consultation with the student’s faculty advisor and approved by the department’s graduate studies committee. If approved by the department’s graduate studies committee, and with the permission of the department concerned, up to 9 of these credits may be taken in cognate graduate courses offered by other departments in the university.

Master of/Magisteriate in Arts with Project (Option III)

Candidates are required to take the following:

1. 9 credits: COMS 600 – Communication Theory; COMS 605 – Media Research Methods I; COMS 694 – Thesis/Research Creation Project Proposal;

2. 3 credits: COMS 610 – Media Studies Seminar;

3. 12 credits, chosen in consultation with the student’s faculty advisor and approved by the department’s graduate studies committee. If approved by the department’s graduate studies committee, and with the permission of the department concerned, up to 3 of these credits may be taken in cognate graduate courses offered by other departments in the university;

4. 21 credits, COMS 697 – Project.

Master of/Magisteriate in Arts with Major Research Paper (Option IV)

Candidates are required to take the following:

1. 6 credits: COMS 600 – Communication Theory; COMS 605 – Media Research Methods I;

2. 3 credits: COMS 610 – Media Studies Seminar;

3. 24 credits, chosen in consultation with the student’s faculty advisor and approved by the department’s graduate studies committee. If approved by the department’s graduate studies committee, and with the permission of the department concerned, up to 9 of these credits may be taken in cognate graduate courses offered by other departments in the university;

4. 12 credits, COMS 696 – Major Research Paper.


Financial Assistance

All applicants will be considered for funding during the regular admissions process. A guide to eligibility for financial assistance is available from the Graduate Awards Office, as well as a list of open competition deadlines for both domestic and international applicants/students.

Teaching Assistantships (TAs) Opportunities

The Department of Communication Studies offers a limited number of Teaching Assistantships (TAs) to eligible M.A. students. The assignment of TAs is very competitive and dependent on the yearly budget, as well as prior experience of candidates in particular areas of media production and theory. TAships normally pay students between $1000-$2000. Students are reminded that this funding is not enough to cover all expenses and that they should seek additional sources of financial assistance. Some graduate assistantships are offered as monitors at the Learning Centre, which serves both undergraduate and graduate students in the Department.

Research Assistantships (RAs) Opportunities

In addition, individual faculty members or groups of faculty members who hold research grants may offer Research Assistantships to graduate students, depending on availability of funds and commensurate research interests. Applicants who are interested in working with faculty as research assistants are strongly encouraged to begin by consulting individual faculty web pages.

Other External Funding Opportunities

Students who are citizens or permanent residents of Canada should investigate the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Fellowships and Fonds Quebecois de la recherche sur la societe et la culture (FQRSC) Fellowships. Applicants from provinces other than Quebec should consult their own provincial government for funding guidelines.  Specific deadlines will be announced each year, but are generally mid-October.

http://www.sshrc.ca/site/apply-demande/students-etudiants-eng.aspx

http://www.fqrsc.gouv.qc.ca/fr/bourses/candidat.php#cat_2

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