Media Studies Undergraduate Courses

​​​MCOM 201  Introduction to Media Studies                                                                                 3.0; 3 cr.

An introduction to the field of media studies, its concepts and theories, and the various modern media industries and professions in today's world. The course aims to help students become better informed about career options in this field and more discerning media consumers. Pre/co-requisite: ENG 203. Annually.

MCOM 202  Communication Theory                                                                                           3.0; 3 cr.    

An overview of the ways in which mass communication has been viewed by social scientists and by practitioners, with a focus on the range of issues studied and questions raised, and the schools, approaches, and trends in the field. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Annually.

MCOM 203  Arab Media and Society                                                                                          3.0; 3 cr.

An in-depth examination of the political, social, economic, and technological effects of the old and new Arab media systems on modern Arab society, with an emphasis on Lebanon and the Arab East region. it focuses on probing the development and current state of print, broadcast and new media systems in the region. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Annually.

MCOM 204  From Telegraph to Twitter: Media History                                                           3.0; 3 cr.

This course situates the history of communication – from the telegraph to today’s social media – as more than a history of technology, and discusses the complexity with which the social world is constructed. Both technology and history enter into conversation, opening up points of critical engagement of modern understandings of the world.  Prerequisite or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Annually.

MCOM 205  Interpersonal Communication & Folk Media                                                      3.0; 3 cr.      
This course examines the interpersonal communication process with a focus on the folk (oral) media as traditional face to face communication media. The course involves an interdisciplinary investigation of relationships between Arab daily life and folk media, roles of formulating folk culture in the theatre and films, and popular music and its audience. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 210  Research Methods in Media Studies                                                                     3.0; 3 cr.

An introduction to the design and implementation of research methodology in media studies. It covers formulating research problems, reviewing scientific literature, designing instruments, and utilizing data collection and analysis techniques, both quantitative and qualitative. Students participate in actual research projects and apply various techniques of data collection and analysis to interpret research findings. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL. 203. Annually.

MCOM 215   Media Law and Ethics                                                                                             3.0; 3 cr.

A survey of Lebanese, Arab, and International media laws and regulations, and their application within the realms of journalism, public relations, advertising, digital media, and entertainment, with an exploration of ethical guidelines, moral values, and social responsibilities of media scholars, practitioners, and educators. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally. 

MCOM 216   Public Opinion                                                                                                           3.0; 3 cr.

A general study of the nature of public opinion, and the interplay between psychological and socio-cultural processes in the formation and dissemination of public opinion. An attempt is also made to explore the impact of public opinion on media and socio-cultural change. Measurements of public opinion are also explored. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 217   Political Communication Campaigns                                                                   3.0; 3 cr.

Introduces students to the subfield of political communication, covering its main theories, research methods, and modern applications and strategies. Students gain theoretical and working knowledge of political campaign operations, political press offices, the roles of a political press secretary, media advisor, and communication director, and the technologies used in modern political campaigns. Prerequisite: MCOM 202 or consent of instructor. Pre or Co-requisite. ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 218   Media Activism for Social Change                                                                      3.0; 3 cr.

An introduction to the theories and strategies of digital media use for non-violent activism and advocacy campaigns and social movements, with a focus on principles of civic activism in the era of digital media convergence. The course balances theory and skills by examining case studies of digital activism from around the world and using digital media tools and civic activism principles to develop social and political change campaigns for civil society groups. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 219   Media Depictions of Society                                                                                3.0; 3 cr.

This course examines the role of the media in constructing our social reality through an examination of media practices, both historically and in the present. It particularly examines the representations of Arabs and the Arab world in the Western media, and the US in the Arab media. It covers politics of culture and identity as they shape and intersect with today’s globalized media. Prerequisite: MCOM 201. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 220   Popular Culture                                                                                                       3.0; 3 cr. 

From the mid-20th century through the current moment, popular cultural productions and consumer products have become ubiquitous worldwide. While globalized chains of production and distribution account for the availability of these cultural products, we ask what is the significance of their popularity? What are the histories of these commodities, and what tensions do they reconcile or expose in the cultures from which they emerge? And, indeed, what precisely is popular culture, anyways? Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 221   War and Media                                                                                                       3.0; 3 cr.

This seminar asks ‘what is a visual culture of war?” as it expands across an array of media platforms, technologies, and aesthetic conventions. Through a careful examination of key readings and visual representations, we will work to build a more precise theoretical and analytical language for understanding war not simply as an “event” or set material effects on the battlefield and home front, but as a discursive production mediated through a number of often intersecting media sites and institutions. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203: Occasionally.

MCOM 222   Introduction to Visual Culture Studies                                                              3.0; 3 cr.

This course introduces students to the study of visual culture, and examines the role images play in society. Students will explore key historical and contemporary issues, and critical perspectives on the relations of power and desire that structure practices of looking. Students will become familiar with methods of comparing different media forms, social arenas, and cultural contexts. Students will also pursue a research-intensive final project that welcomes image-making as part of the research/writing process. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Annually. 

MCOM 223   On Television                                                                                                         3.0; 3 cr.

This is an advanced undergraduate course that introduces to students to the study of television as a distinctive approach to the study of the media landscape. Students will explore television’s political economic structures, cultural form, and social function in a range of national, regional, and global contexts. Pre-requisite: Junior standing, or permission of instructor. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally

MCOM 224  Palestine Film and Media                                                                                    3.0; 3 cr.

In this undergraduate seminar, students will examine the role played by film and media in efforts not only to resist Israeli occupation but to articulate emancipatory visions of Palestinian liberation. Through close readings of current scholarly literature, weekly film screenings, and seminar discussions, students will interrogate the relationship between culture and politics and explore such contested topics as identity, memory and trauma, power and resistance, and spectacle and surveillance. Junior standing, or permission of the instructor. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 225   Introduction to Photojournalism                                                                       3.0; 3 cr.

This course covers the history of photojournalism and its place within the wider field of photography and society at large. Students will learn of the related fields of documentary photography and street photography, and will explore early and modern masters, the social and political impact of their work and varied methodologies. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally

MCOM 226   Journalism and Society                                                                                      3.0; 3 cr.

This course examines the various forms and phases of transition that have framed the evolution of journalism and the relationship between these transitions and social. economic, factors, with a focus on the current digital age. The course traces the trajectory of the industry's transformation in addition to the challenges and debates - both academic and societal - that have emerged in parallel to this trajectory. This comprises introductory issues relevant to the basic definition of journalism as well as more contemporary topics pertaining to the challenges of mark-oriented digital production, media activism and political restraint, media trends and identity formation, the birth and evolution of new media platforms and applications and the proliferation of digital entrepreneurship. Annually.

MCOM 227   Media and the Environment                                                                                 3.0; 3cr 

This course examines media’s role in shaping the built and natural environments around us. It draws on developments in environmental communication and critical media infrastructure studies to consider media both as modes of communication and as technologies with material forms. The course explores the genres and communication strategies used by activists, artists, and media producers to articulate the environment and its problems. Prerequisite: Junior Standing. Occasionally.

MCOM 240   News Reporting and Writing                                                                               3.0; 3 cr.

An introduction to the reporting and writing of various news stories based on reliable information gathered through interviewing, research, and observation. Formats include basic newspaper and magazine articles, online news, press releases, and other journalistic formats, with emphasis on accuracy, concise presentation, meeting deadlines, and objective and ethical reporting. The course covers news styles, an expanded news vocabulary, sentence structure, story organization, and clean writing. Pre-requisite: English 203.  Occasionally.   

MCOM 241   Digital and Media Literacy                                                                                  3.0; 3 cr.

Introduces digital information literacy or the ability to effectively access, analyze, evaluate and create digital media. Examines how media messages shape politics, culture and society, and explores new media production skills, including blogs, podcasts, photo and video manipulation. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 242   Public Relations                                                                                                   3.0; 3 cr.

The course introduces the student to the world of public relations through a strong emphasis on fundamentals, such as history and research. Emerging issues, such as technology, ethics, and the international aspects of public relations are considered through examining PR strategies, tactics, and case studies. Prerequisite: MCOM 201. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 243   Advertising                                                                                                           3.0; 3 cr.

The course introduces the student to the core concepts and practices of advertising. It examines the impact of new media and research methods, with an emphasis on integrated communications and the role of ad agencies. Students learn how to assess the effectiveness of advertising, and how to create a successful ad campaign. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Prerequisite: MCOM 201. Occasionally. 

MCOM 244   Specialized News Reporting and Writing                                                       3.0; 3 cr.
The course explores specialized reporting and writing techniques, including feature stories, opinion columns, profiles, in-depth series, and narrative journalism. It aims to enable students to report and write effectively across news genres and to master transferable communication skills useful beyond the journalism profession. Each semester, the course covers some specialized and emerging journalism themes, including investigative reporting, data journalism, covering conflict, and violence, technology journalism, non-fiction narrative, and others. Prerequisite: MCOM 240 or consent of instructor. May be repeated for credit. Occasionally.

MCOM 245   Broadcast Media                                                                                                3.0; 3 cr.

The course introduces the students to the history of the electronic media, examining the impact of the new media on communication. The course has an interdisciplinary nature, drawing on the expertise of AUB faculty in the fields of communication, science and technology, history, politics, and economics. Prerequisite: MCOM 240 or content of instructor. Occasionally.

MCOM 246   Digital and Multimedia News                                                                          3.0; 3 cr.

An introduction to digital and multimedia news writing, reporting, researching, producing, and disseminating online. The course covers basic digital and Web design principles, photojournalism, audio reporting, video journalism, news blogging, social media reporting, CMS managing, multiplatform publishing, and writing for a converged news environment. It also covers emerging new media issues., such as interactivity, information architecture, and individualization. Prerequisite: MCOM 204 or content of instructor. Occasionally.

MCOM 247   Trauma Journalism                                                                                          3.0; 3 cr.      

This course aims to sensitize and train students on how to deal with victims of trauma, conflict and violence, including war, suicide, homicide, rape, domestic violence and other traumatizing experiences. It teaches students how to ethically and fairly cover trauma victims, how to protect themselves physically and psychologically from the negative effects of trauma reporting, and how to professionally and sensibly tell the trauma story to their audiences. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 248   Data Journalism                                                                                               3.0; 3 cr.

This course brings together scientific research, data visualization and journalistic storytelling techniques. It covers skills and techniques necessary for interpreting data and using statistical information to effectively relay the information to a general audience. Students will learn how to obtain, interpret, visualize and display data, evaluating and producing tables, charts and diagrams using a variety of applications and web tools to tell the story of science. Prerequisite: MCOM 240 or consent of instructor. Occasionally. 

MCOM 249   Writing for Advertising                                                                                  3.0; 3 cr.

This course is focused on helping students build the essential skills to write clear and captivating messages for different forms of media. Students will craft messages that address the objective, the audience, and the medium. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 250  Video editing                                                                                                    3.0; 3 cr.

The course is an introduction to the field of digital and video editing, including the history and overview of analog and digital video. The course explores a variety of digital video career options, industry trends and the practical application of non-linear video editing. Students will learn how to manage data efficiently, how to manage a variety of data formats and will work hands-on with Final Pro 10 and Premiere Pro CC on a variety of editing projects, from simple sequences to branded content, music videos and parallel editing of fiction scenes. Occasionally.

MCOM 251  Intermediate Photojournalism                                                                    3.0; 3 cr.

This course is for students who have mastered basic photography skills and are familiar with the history of photojournalism. Students will learn about the ethics of photojournalism and explore critical issues in the field today. In addition to photojournalism, the class will cover the basics of documentary video shooting and the related fields of documentary photography and street photography. Pre-requisite: MCOM225 or permission of the instructor. Occasionally.​

MCOM 260   Senior Seminar in Media Studies                                                              3.0; 3 cr.

An undergraduate seminar on the role of Media in society. The content areas may change. Prerequisite: Senior standing. Annually.

MCOM 290   Special Topics Seminar                                                                               3.0; 3 cr.

MCOM faculty or visiting professors and recognized scholars might be invited to offer seminars to explore relevant dimensions of their research in progress. May be repeated for credit. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 291 Special Topics (Humanities)                                                                         3.0; 3 cr.

A humanities course that provides a general overview of an area in media studies that is not normally covered by the department’s offerings. May be repeated for credit. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.  

MCOM 292   Special Topics (Social Sciences)                                                              3.0; 3 cr.

A social sciences course that provides a general overview of an area in media studies that is not normally covered by the department’s offerings. May be repeated for credit. Pre or Co-requisite. Occasionally.

MCOM293:   Special Topics (Practice-based elective-List B)                                    3.0; 3 cr.

A practice-based course that addresses an area in media studies that is not normally covered by the department’s offerings. May be repeated for credit. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 294   Media Brown Bag                                                                                                 0 cr.

The Media Brown Bag course consists of a series of seminars presented by leading media researchers and practitioners from local and international media initiatives, broadcasters, print media, and advertising agencies. The aim of the seminar is to allow with prominent media practitioners and to allow students to discover potential career paths in media. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Every semester. 

MCOM 295   Media Lab                                                                                                      0.3; 1 cr.

A hands-on media lab that may be offered as a workshop or a series of regular classes where students learn a specific set of professional skills within one of the MCOM program's areas of specialization. May be repeated for credit. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.

MCOM 296   Internship                                                                                                       3.0; 3 cr.

A summer period of guided work experience supervised by the MCOM Internships and Workshops Coordinator and designed to acquaint students with a specific media/communication profession and help them acquire core values and basic skills necessary for finding future work and succeeding in that profession. Prerequisite: consent of instruct​or. Every semester.

MCOM 299   Directed Study                                                                                                  3-6 cr.

A tutorial course offered to MCOM students with an average of 85 or above in their major at the beginning of their senior year. This tutorial consists of independent research, original creative compositions, or directed reading, and includes the presentation of a report, project, or thesis on the work. Students with averages lower than 85 may be admitted to directed study at the discretion of the department. Pre or Co-requisite: ENGL 203. Occasionally.