Computational Media Designated Emphasis


The graduate designated emphasis (DE) leading to the degree notation “with an emphasis in Computational Media” provides specialization in the theory, principles, and practices of the field of computational media. This DE is administered by the Department of Computational Media. Students wishing to complete an M.F.A. or Ph.D. degree with an emphasis in this area must satisfy the degree requirements of a primary program as well as of the DE. The DE is most suitable for students pursuing degrees in computer science and engineering, digital art and new media, film and digital media, literature, and psychology. However, students from any area may work in this interdisciplinary field as long as they meet all requirements, including progress, within the primary degree program. It is intended for students in terminal degree programs (e.g., Ph.D., M.F.A.) rather than non-terminal master’s or certificate programs.


Committee Composition and Departmental Approvals

Upon electing to pursue a designated emphasis (DE) in computational media, students must choose a DE faculty advisor in the Department of Computational Media. A list of eligible DE advisors is maintained online. The student must organize a preliminary meeting with the DE advisor, and agree on a plan for completion of the requirements outlined below. Once this plan has been designed, the student must submit the Computational Media DE Request Form online, which will be signed by the CM DE advisor, the student’s departmental faculty advisor, and the CM graduate director. Once approved, this request will be filed in the Baskin Engineering Graduate Student Affairs Office. This should ideally be done before the student’s advancement to candidacy (for Ph.D. students), and no later than three months before the planned date for the oral presentation completion requirement.

The student’s M.F.A. thesis or capstone, Ph.D. qualifying exam, or Ph.D. dissertation committee must include one member of the Computational Media (CM) Department faculty, typically the student’s DE advisor.

Course Requirements

All students must complete CMPM 201 (Introduction to Computational Media) and two additional 5-credit graduate courses offered or crosslisted by the CM department and/or faculty with (non-zero percentage) appointments in the department. One of the additional courses may be fulfilled through a graduate independent study (of 5 credits or greater) with a CM faculty member, with approval of the CM graduate director.

Writing, Research and/or Teaching Requirements

The student must complete a significant piece of computational media writing. Examples include a student’s M.F.A. thesis (or substantial section of one) or a Ph.D. dissertation chapter—but other pieces of writing are also acceptable, at the discretion of the CM graduate director, including conference and journal publications.

Applying for Graduation

All candidates for a degree must submit an application for the master's degree or an application for the doctorate in philosophy degree to the appropriate office in their primary department by the date stated in the Academic and Administrative Calendar for the quarter they wish to receive the degree. Students who have completed a designated emphasis should be sure to note the designated emphasis on the degree application. The deadline for degree applications is typically in the second week of the quarter. A student is required to be registered or on filing fee during the quarter in which the degree is conferred.

When students apply for graduation, they must also submit the Computational Media DE Confirmation Form online to certify that they have met the DE requirements. This form will be signed by the CM DE advisor, the CM graduate advisor, and the CM graduate director, and then filed in the Baskin Engineering Graduate Student Affairs Office.