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Academic Catalog 2017-2018
Massachusetts College of Art and Design
   
 
  Dec 11, 2017
 
 
    
Academic Catalog 2017-2018

Courses

Contract All Courses |

 

Liberal Arts: Mathematics and Science

  
  •  

    LAMS203 Physics of Music 3 cr.


    This course uses principles of physics to understand musical instruments, scales, and chords. Required background: students must be able to find notes from written music on an instrument of their choice. The course draws upon algebra.

    Prerequisites: FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LAMS206 Biomimicry 3cr


    Biomimicry is the study of the structure and function of biological systems as models for the design and engineering of materials. In this course, students become acquainted with basic concepts in biology, physics and engineering. Building upon this foundation, the course treats how designers solve design problems by mimicking nature.

    Prerequisites: FRSM100

    Lecture
    Sustainability Content
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    LAMS208 Bacteria Assassins 3cr.


    Almost everyone has taken antibiotics at some point during their lives and we read every day about deadly “superbugs” that are resistant to antibiotics. But what does this resistance mean and how did we get here? The course examines the antibiotic resistance problem and an often-touted possible alternative, bacteriophages. Bacteriophages are viruses of bacteria and were discovered exactly 100 years ago during the First World War. Students examine and synthesize the biology, history, ecology, and applications of these two types of bacteria killers to better understand the treatment of bacterial infections today and what may come in the future. This course helps students understand current events and science relevant to their lives - such as on antibiotics and antibiotic resistance, emerging diseases (such as Ebola), and the human microbiome. No laboratory experience is required.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100

    Lecture
    Sustainability Content
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    LAMS209 Wetlands Science and Policy 3cr


    This course is intended as a rational approach to
    wetland conservation balanced with responsible
    development. People need to live somewhere and to
    draw water from somewhere.  But wetlands serve
    many vital functions and oftentimes are highly
    valuable ecosystems that should be protected. In
    the course, students gain an interdisciplinary
    knowledge of wetland definitions, classification
    systems, origins, and natural processes of
    wetland environments. We discuss wetlands across
    the globe, including boreal, temperate, and
    tropical climates. We investigate hydrology,
    soils, and vegetation and their relationship to
    ecosystem processes, societal values, and
    management.  We examine human use, modification,
    exploitation, jurisdictional delineation, and
    management options, along with legal and
    political aspects of wetlands. This is a broad
    course, also encompassing forestry, coastal
    management, energy, climate change, agriculture,
    history, and ecosystem succession. We will
    attempt four optional field trips, weather
    permitting, in our field experience weekend.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100

    Lecture
    Spring
  
  •  

    LAMS211 Energy in the 21st Century 3cr


    Oil, gas, and coal are polluting, non-renewable
    resources and society must reduce their
    dependence on these fossil fuels.  Alternative
    energies are non-polluting, renewable and are
    therefore highly desirable. This course takes a
    non-traditional approach in that it includes the
    benefits of fossil fuels, and delves into the
    stumbling blocks to implementing the following
    alternative energy technologies:  hydropower,
    wave power, biomass, solar, geothermal, wind,
    hydrogen and nuclear energies.  Science,
    technology, policy, and societal concerns will be
    discussed in a seminar style where students are
    responsible for researching and presenting each
    type of energy.  We will also discuss the “smart”
    use of energy, as well as the storage,
    transportation, housing, and consumption of
    energy.  We will conclude by discussing and
    creating potential policies for the expedited
    phasing in of alternative technologies, including
    regional, strategic, health, safety, and
    environmental concerns.  Students will leave the
    course with a depth of understanding of the
    technological and policy-based obstacles to
    alternative energy but also having a clear
    understanding of the pressing nature of this
    transition.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100

    Lecture
    Spring
  
  •  

    LAMS240 Biological Form and Function 3 cr.


    An examination of the importance of shape, or form, to biological function. Students explore selected examples at several levels of organization (molecule, cell, individual, community) in a variety of organisms (viruses, bacteria, plants, fungi, invertebrate and vertebrate animals, embryos and mature forms). The course teaches fundamental concepts of biology and prepares students to compare biological and artistic form and function.

    Prerequisites: FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LAMS267 Natural Disasters in a Global Environment 3cr


    Do you have an interest in what causes natural
    disasters? Come join us! Natural disasters
    currently cost the world United States $175
    billion USD per year. Fortunately, we have the
    knowledge to significantly reduce these
    costs.Unfortunately, political and cultural
    trends will cause disasters to occur more
    frequently and ferociously. This course provides
    an overview of the causes, locations, and effects
    of natural disasters. You can learn about:
    earthquakes,volcanoes, tsunami, wildfire, floods,
    landslides, pandemic diseases, hurricanes,
    tornadoes, famines and droughts,meteorite
    impacts, and climate change. We will investigate
    recovery and rebuilding efforts and how loss of
    life and
    property damage can be minimized by implementing
    scientific knowledge, through the lens of
    historical case studies, as well as lively,
    hands-on labs, and field trips!

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100

    Lecture
    Fall
  
  •  

    LAMS320 Environmental Science 3 cr.


    A study of the principles of ecology, a science intertwining many biological and physical science disciplines. The course distinguishes the scientific, technological, and social domains. It treats complex human impacts and environmental concerns (such as biodiversity, population size, food and energy resources, air and water pollution, waste management, recycling, and sustainability) and raises issues of environmental ethics, risk assessment, and policy planning.

    Prerequisites: FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse and Sustainability Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LAMS322 Animal Sex, Biodiversity and Gender 3cr.


    This course explores the vast diversity of reproductive and mating strategies, sex roles, gender and sexuality in animals and nature. This course takes an integrative and comparative approach to survey the diverse morphological, behavioral, physiological and ecological aspects of sex and reproduction. The course treats the evolution of sexual and asexual reproduction, focusing on ecological and evolutionary factors that influence and constrain biodiversity. Students critically examine the scientific evidence that supports and questions the framework of sexual selection and alternative theories. Students consider and evaluate traditional and emerging forms of scientific communication regarding evolutionary biology and sexual diversity.

    Prerequisites: FRSM100

    Lecture
    Sustainability Content
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    LAMS324 Sustainabilty Science 3 cr


    What is the nature of sustainability? How can we learn from and with nature, its biological
    diversity and ecosystems, to become more resilient? Practical examples, field visits,
    readings, and discussions will give students the opportunity to learn about emerging
    interdisciplinary sciences and solution-driven technologies based on green chemistry and
    biomimicry. Through explorations of the water-energy-food nexus, adaptations to climate
    change, and sea level rise, students can explore how we can become self-sustainable in the era of
    Anthropocene. The intention of the course is to give students a greater understanding of how
    science can inform public policies. In addition, attention will be paid to how science relates to
    art and design making, and vice versa.

    Sustainabilty Content
    Fall and Spring
  
  •  

    LAMS325 Desert Science Travel Course 3cr


    This domestic travel course will provide an introduction to the biodiversity of flora and
    fauna of the deserts of the Southwest U.S. through on-site immersion, camping and field
    explorations. This course is a hands-on, novel exploration of the integration of science,
    nature, and art. Through scientific methodology, close observation, and art-making in the field,
    we will conduct research on ecological, behavioral, and morphological aspects of desert
    flora and fauna in their natural habitats. The unique wildlife and distinct habitats of the
    Southwest deserts have long been a source of wonder and inspiration for naturalists,
    biologists and artists. The starkly varied environments of the Chihuahuan and Sonoran
    Deserts (in NM and AZ) offer a unique opportunity for artists to get hands-on biological research
    experience in some of the world’s most unique ecosystems. The Chihuahuan and Sonoran Desert
    regions have the highest levels of species endemism in North America (over 2000 species of
    plants and animals found only in these eco regions). This course takes an interdisciplinary
    approach by creatively combining various methods of field biology data collection and art-making
    to conduct novel, collaborative Field BioArt research. The Chihuahuan and Sonoran deserts’
    pristine, unique, and abundant wildlife is made accessible by the well managed and protected
    National and State Parks in New Mexico and Arizona. The natural habitat will be our
    studio+lab to develop and explore innovative, creative methods of biological inquiry and
    hybrid, experimental art.

    Prerequisites: LALW-100 & FRSM-100

    TRAVEL COURSE
    Sustainabilty Content
    Fall Only
  
  •  

    LAMS326 Experimental Biology and Hybrid Research 3cr.


    This course will provide an introduction to experimental biology and biological research in a
    laboratory setting.  This course is a hands-on, novel exploration of organismal and experimental
    biology through scientific methodology, close observation, experimental design, and data
    collection.  We will conduct morphological, physiological and behavioral research on various
    flora and fauna in a lab work space.  This course takes an interdisciplinary approach by creatively
    combining various methods of experimental biology data collection and art-making to conduct novel,
    collaborative BioArt and hybrid research.  The lab+studio will facilitate the development and
    exploration of innovative approaches to biological inquiry using various observational,
    descriptive, experimental methods, including data dissemination/science communication.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100

    Fall Only
  
  •  

    LAMS400 Directed Study Math/Science 3 cr.


    A Liberal Arts directed study is a research project selected by a student in a Liberal Arts discipline. Typically, the study results in a research paper of thirty plus pages or the equivalent, as agreed upon by the faculty member supervising the project. Because of its advanced nature, a Liberal Arts LAMS directed study is open only to seniors and is limited to one per semester. No more than two Liberal Arts directed studies may be counted toward Liberal Arts degree requirements. Students seeking to register for a LAMS directed study must execute a directed study proposal form that describes the proposed project, includes a bibliography, and describes the final project. Liberal Arts directed studies proposals require the approval of the Liberal Arts Department chair.

     

    Prerequisites: FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
  
  •  

    LAMS401 BioAesthetics and the Human Animal 3cr


    This course explores aesthetics in nature and the
    evolutionary processes of sensory drive and
    natural and sexual selection. The course will
    critically examine both anthropocentric and
    ecological schemes on the aesthetic diversity of
    nature, focusing on the creative agency of
    non-human organisms and objective and subjective
    models of inquiry. The course evaluates and
    challenges historical,contemporary and emerging
    perspectives on what is art, who/what can create
    it, and on interactions between the science and
    art. Through a combination of discussion, guest
    lectures and collaborative projects students will
    explore various topics focused around the
    biological and evolutionary bases of creativity,
    art and design.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100

    Seminar
    Spring
  
  •  

    LAMS402 Eating and the Environment 3cr


    Eating and the Environment focuses on the impact
    that our daily food purchases and consumption
    make on the environment and our health.  In the
    class, we will examine major themes related to
    both industrialized and sustainable agriculture,
    including: soil resources and pollution; water
    and air pollution; pesticides, herbicides and
    fertilizers; the farm bill; tropical
    deforestation; food additives and nutritional
    supplements; food safety and emerging infectious
    diseases; meat and dairy sustainability
    ramifications; GMOs; and climate change. This
    course gives students the tools they need to
    understand what constitutes environmentally
    friendly and healthy food. Choosing these leads
    to a higher quality of life in many ways.  There
    is no bigger impact on Earth than agriculture.
    And food consumption has the single largest
    impact on our health.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100

    Seminar
    Spring

Liberal Arts: Social Sciences

  
  •  

    LASS206 Seminar in Romanticism 3 cr.


    What is Romanticism? To what areas of intellectual life does the term have reference? To art? Literature? Philosophy? Religion? History? Politics? The answer is yes to all the above, and then some. The seminar explores the nature of this immense cultural movement while focusing on the work of the great Romantic poets, writers and artists of the nineteenth century in Europe and America.

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    Undergraduate Elective
  
  •  

    LASS208 Social Psychology 3 cr.


    Social Psychology explores the behavior of individuals and groups in social contexts. In this course, emphasis is placed on how social aspects may be relevant to being an artistic individual in today’s society. Topics include: How are our thoughts, feelings, and behavior influenced by the presence of other human beings? Can we manipulate someone else’s opinion? Does self-fulfilling prophesy exist? What are social norms? Questions related to how a person’s self-image develops, how individuals think about and react to the world, and how they understand themselves and others are explored. In addition, students learn about concepts such as impression and attitude formation, persuasion, pro-social behavior, prejudice and discrimination, obedience and compliance, aggression, group psychology, and personality

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS211 The American Century 3 cr.


    From the Spanish-Cuban-Filipino-American War to the present.

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS229 History of Jazz 3cr


    The history of jazz music, people, and culture, from nineteenth century origins to today. A survey of major artists, groups, and periods, including New Orleans jazz, the Swing Era, Bebop, and other movements. Reading of historical sources and recent commentary inform the study of jazz in American society and global culture. Guided listening builds understanding of form and structure in this art form. No knowledge of music notation required.

    Prerequisites: FRSM100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    LASS230 Financial Literacy 3cr


    Practical knowledge about personal finance (budgets and credit) and money management (banking and the ABCs of investing). Readings and discussion on current financial topics.

    Prerequisites: LALW100 and FRSM100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
  
  •  

    LASS230 Financial Literacy & Careers 3cr.


    Practical knowledge about personal finance including taxes, credit, how to budget, save, and
    invest. Learn how to define your career goals to explore opportunities and successfully present
    yourself to the working world. [Formerly titles Financial Literacy]

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100 and LALW-100

    Fall and Spring
  
  •  

    LASS232 Free Speech, Democracy and Artists 3cr


    This course examines freedom of speech, a fundamental right indispensable to democracy and indispensable for artists. The tension between liberty and control of speech is central to many forms of media and artistic expression. The course examines speech broadly by examining topics such as:  speech during wartime or in time of fear; hate speech; speech by students; and libel and slander. In addition, the course examines free speech controversies involving obscenity and pornography, or merely nudity, including controversies concerning artistic expression in film and literature. Students consider speech on television, the Internet, and social media. The course also treats symbolic expressions of speech, such as flag burning and painting; as well as campaign financing as speech. The course focuses primarily on U.S. law–most of the readings will be excerpts of U.S. Supreme Court cases–but the course includes a comparative component, incorporating laws regulating speech and expression in other nations.

    Prerequisites: FRSM100, LALW100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    LASS233 The World of Music 3cr


    The course explores selected music and rhythms from throughout the world. Students explore various folk, popular, indigenous, and hybrid music from every continent and surveys the development of musical traditions through the development of contemporary world music.  The course also treats several American musical traditions, including country, folk, and musical transmissions from Europe, expressive cultural traditions from indigenous peoples of America, and black musical traditions in the New World. This is a Liberal Arts course with required readings, written assignments, and listening work. Under a different course number and requiring different assignments,  this course may also provide studio credit in selected studio departments.

    Prerequisites: FRSM100. LALW100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    LASS236 Music and Society 3cr


    The course considers how music expresses and inspires social change.  By examining the origin and inspiration of major works of classical music, such as Haydn’s Farewell Symphony, Mozart’s opera The Marriage of Figaro, Mendelssohn’s Reformation Symphony, Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring, and Shostakovich’s Babi Yar Symphony, the course considers what music reveals about history.

    Prerequisites: FRSM100; LALW100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    LASS241 Twentieth Century World History 3cr.


    World history from 1900 to 2001. The course
    introduces students to major events and major
    themes in twentieth century history, including
    world wars, the rise and fall of totalitarian
    philosophies and empires, economic contractions
    and expansions, colonial empires and liberation
    movement, antithetical internationalist,
    nationalist, regionalist, and faith-based
    movements, and the gradual process by which the
    machine age became the information world.

    Prerequisites: LALW-100 & FRSM-100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    LASS242 Film Music 3cr.


    This course treats the evolution of film music
    from silent movies until the present.  It
    introduces students to musical syntax, the
    aesthetics of film music, and the means by which
    composers synchronize music and script to convey
    mood and render action vivid. Working
    chronologically, the course explores the
    increasing importance of music in cinema and how
    music functions as an expressive element in a
    film.  The course treats composers who wrote
    almost exclusively for the cinema (i.e., Charlie
    Chaplin and the contemporary John Williams),
    treats classical central European composers who
    migrated to the screen composition from wartime
    Europe (i.e., Korngold, Waxman, Alexandre
    Tansman, Bronislaw Kaper), and treats
    composer-director/producer collaborations such as
    Eisenstein-Prokofiev, Rota-Fellini/Visconti, and
    others. The course additionally treats the role
    of ethnic music (Morocco, India, China, Japan) in
    world cinema. Two term papers are assigned, one
    dealing with a composer-director partnership, the
    second treating the function of score in a major,
    iconic film such as Gone with the Wind. The
    textbook is Mervyn Cooke’s A History of Film
    Music.

    Prerequisites: LALW-100 & FRSM-100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Spring
  
  •  

    LASS245 Cities and Society 3cr.


    Cities are fascinatingly complex places, and for millennia people have flocked to them for a host
    of reasons. Some people have looked to cities as a way to escape the ennui of rural existence,
    some have gathered in cities for economic opportunity, and many others have arrived simply
    to be in close contact with different groups of people. Taking “the city” as our primary unit of
    analysis in this course, we will attempt to explore some of the major themes and processes
    that affect most urban areas, along with offering some historical perspective on the trends that
    have created “the city” as we find it today.

    Prerequisites: LALW-100 & LALW-200

    Fall and Spring
  
  •  

    LASS247 China in the Modern World 3cr


    This course examines major political, social and
    cultural changes in modern China. We will cover
    the major political events and revolutions in
    China after the Opium War. At the same time, we
    will study the social and cultural lives of
    various human actors and social institutions such
    as peasants, workers, women, ethnic minorities,
    migrants within and beyond China, educational
    system, nationality laws, and so on. We will also
    place China in the global context to examine its
    interaction with the outside world.

    Prerequisites: LALW-100 and FRSM-100

    Lecture
    Spring
  
  •  

    LASS248 The Hood: Life and History 3cr


    At the time of Black Lives Matter – a movement
    that has been called our Third Reconstruction –
    the course examines three sets of interrelated
    themes:  1) The American inner city:  its
    multiple and entangled historical,
    socio-political and economic origins.  2) The
    role of segregation in housing, education,
    employment, policing and criminal justice in the
    life of the people in the inner city.  3)  The
    forces maintaining the inner-city status quo, and
    the promise of Black Lives Matter.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100 and LALW-100

    Lecture
    Spring
  
  •  

    LASS249 Queer Studies:Beyond Traditional Ideas of Gender and Sexuality 3cr


    This class offers students a chance to ground
    their own artistic and academic projects in a
    working theoretical and practical knowledge of
    the discipline of Queer Studies; both the
    historiography and current work being done in the
    field. Our goal is to establish a classroom
    environment of mutual respect where queer ideas
    about artistic challenges and choices can be
    developed and shared in a supportive and safe
    academic and working environment grounded in
    solid social science methodology. We will examine
    the development and current state of the academic
    discipline of Queer Studies as it has emerged
    from both Women’s Studies and Gender Studies. Our
    method will be to research both archival and
    current academic and multi-media sources to see
    where the field stands as an academic discipline
    but also as an applied paradigm for social
    justice and artistic action. Special attention
    will be paid to the development of connections
    between applied Queer Theory and artistic and
    life choices for today’s working artist. The list
    of class materials will be fluid and
    inter-disciplinary and rely on input and research
    from all class members, reflecting the core
    nature of the discipline itself.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100 and LALW-100

    Lecture
    Spring
  
  •  

    LASS250 Philosophy of Religion 3cr


    The course explores the concept of God and the sacred, the grounds forand challenges to religious belief, the credentials of mystical experience, the implications of religious pluralism, and the idea of a religiously ambiguous world. Readings will be drawn from classical and contemporary thinkers.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100 and LALW-100

    Seminar
    Spring
  
  •  

    LASS251 Chinese Diasporas: Past and Present 3cr


    This course examines historical and contemporary
    Chinese diasporas in the global context. The
    Chinese diaspora has been a significant part of
    Chinese history, and Chinese migrants have
    assumed important roles such as the “Mother of
    the Republican Revolution” or have been
    portrayed in controversial images such as
    “neocolonialists” as large numbers of Chinese
    migrants made their presence in Africa along with
    the rising China in recent decades. The Chinese
    diaspora is also one of the major world diasporas
    and helps us understand important
    global issues such as race, empire, colonialism,
    imperialism, nationalism, and globalization. This
    course focuses on the following topics:
    connections Chinese diasporas created between
    China and other societies and cultures; migrants’
    cultural and ethnic identities and the
    transformation of the meanings of “Chineseness,”
    different types of Chinese diasporas and the
    evolvement of Chinatowns worldwide; migrants’
    transnational networks past and present; and
    commonalities and differences between the Chinese
    diaspora and other diasporas such as Jewish,
    Italian and Indian diasporas. We will use a wide
    variety of primary sources such as laws, poems,
    epigraphic materials, novels, and films, and we
    encourage interdisciplinary approaches to explore
    global political and economic structures as well
    as migrants’ daily lives and identities.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100 and LALW-100

    Fall
  
  •  

    LASS252 Media, Race & Law 3cr


    This course examines the intersection
    between moving images, racial stereotypes
    and the law. Most media representations of
    target groups are misleading - often offering
    distorted social and political constructs in
    their place. This course challenges those
    assumptions through thoughtful inquiries
    into the intricate modes of law and the racial
    coding of moving images. This course draws
    on an array of social, legal and cinematic
    sources. From D.W. Griffith’s 1915 proslavery
    caricature of African-Americans in
    the film, “The Birth of a Nation,” to current
    YouTube and mainstream discussions that
    dangerously blur the boundaries between
    “terrorists,” Muslims and President, Barrack
    Hussein Obama. In addition to screening
    films that reveal the harmful and derogatory
    portrayals of target groups (Native and
    African Americans, Jews, Asians, Latinos,
    people of Arab descent - the list goes on.),
    we will analyze case law and articles that
    reflect the impact these biases have on shaping
    public policies designed to advantage some at
    the disadvantage of others. Ultimately, this
    course aims to challenge clichés and configure
    a more complicated way to view stereotyped
    groups, which are truer to what people know
    and what our imaginations are able to consider.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100 and LALW-100

    Lecture
    Fall
  
  •  

    LASS280 Introduction to Psychology 3 cr.


    An examination of the dynamics of the self from the interpretative, clinical perspective. The course discusses the growth and the making of the “solid self” and explores the influences that can further or hinder the constitution of a coherent, stable personality. Narcissistic disorders, the most common psychic disorders of our time, are also addressed.

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
    Fall/Spring
  
  •  

    LASS281 Psychology of Flourishing 3 cr.


    This course examines the human potential for growth and flourishing as well as for resiliency. Traditionally, psychologists have aimed at helping individuals notice and fix unwanted or dysfunctional habits, uncover and repair unfortunate or traumatic childhood experiences, or calibrate damaged brain chemistry. Rather than focusing on human weakness and dysfunction, this class explores the human condition from a positive psychology perspective. Students study concepts such as hope, happiness, optimism, and resiliency, and surveys human core character strengths and virtues.

     

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS300 Race in America 3 cr.


    How did various peoples from America, Africa, and Europe, speaking different languages and possessing different cultures, come to be defined as “red”, “black”, and “white,” and how did later immigrants or conquered peoples from Asia and the western hemisphere get fitted into this scheme? This class examines how race categories were formed in the colonial period and have been repeatedly remade up to the present.

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS301 Social Philosophy of Art 3 cr.


    This course is for enthusiasts, juniors and seniors, who like ideas and think that valid reasons exist to examine art in the social, intellectual, and cultural context. Our framework is that of social philosophy. Three central themes organize the course: the pre- modern and the rise of modernity, the transition of modernity into postmodernity, and the character of art at our current moment. The course examines the roots of the modern and the current in the pre-modern. Why did the Romanesque give way to the Gothic? Was it just that people became bored with the same old style? If not that, then what? How far do you need to go to understand the phenomenon? The art-historical background is paramount. Students lacking this art history and history background should take the course at a later date. Students unprepared to understand historical references this material takes for granted must make up for it by reading historical texts in the reader. Our intention is not descriptive but analytic and critical. Many preconceived notions are challenged. Participants  use examples from art history as needed to enlighten a larger point: the intersection between ideas, culture, society, and the art world as it evolves from the premodern into the modern and into our current moment.

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    Junior, Senior Elective
  
  •  

    LASS302 Gender, Class and Race in American Film 3 cr.


    This class analyzes film as an important part of mass culture. The course is a social science course, not a “film viewing” one. It treats sociological themes such as gender, class, and race as these themes are reflected in the actions of the film’s characters; in their relations with other characters; in their expectations, hopes, and dreams; and, implicitly, in the film’s cinematic, visual aspects.

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS307 Medieval and Renaissance History 3cr


    This course encompasses no less than twelve centuries of European history extending from the last decades of the Roman Empire in the West to what is often referred to as the Early Modern period (I.e., the 16th century), the era characterized by the rise of powerful centralized monarchical states and empires.  Throughout, a determined effort is made to precisely define broad historical concepts such as “civilizations” and “intellectual revolutions.”  For example,  we will ask what particular historical and cultural elements made the Medieval West a distinct civilization?  In the same manner, what presumably different and distinct elements formed and shaped the civilization of Byzantium?  What was the Renaissance, both in  Italy, and north and west of the Alps?  Where and how does the Renaissance intersect with the Reformation and the Reconnaissance, enormously significant historical phenomena in themselves?

    Prerequisites: LALW100, FRSM100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    LASS308 Narcissism, Aggression and Creativity 3cr


    Are we really capable of falling in love with an image of ourselves, as in the story of Echo and Narcissus? If so, what are the consequences? Do contemporary cultural themes cast a light on the story? What impulses motivate these thoughts and processes? This course utilizes a psychoanalytic approach to discover and analyze themes that emerge from an awareness of creative impulses. What blocks them? What role does aggression play in the responsiveness to the creative impulse? Psychoanalytic literature, in combination with contemporary themes, questions and illuminates the art making process.

    Prerequisites: LALW100, FRSM100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall
  
  •  

    LASS309 History of Modern Europe 3 cr.


    A comprehensive overview of the last four centuries of European history. The course surveys political and international history, social history, and intellectual history. Students gain a deep appreciation for the rich complexity of European civilization and an understanding of the continuity of events from the seventeenth century onward.

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS312 Technology and Language 3cr


    The course investigates the relationship of languages of expression to tools and communication technologies. Through interdisciplinary exploration of various modes and practices, from the language of typography, audio/visual expression, to dynamic languages of interaction, social media and crowd sourcing, students gain knowledge and understanding of current issues of social communication in the context of dynamic media technology. The course introduces students to recent developments, theory and criticism of communication design and technology through selected case studies involving the work of historical and contemporary inventors, designers, artists and new media innovators.

    Prerequisites: LALW100,FRSM100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall
  
  •  

    LASS314 Race,Class and the American Dream 3cr


    How do race and class operate not just in categorizing people, but in maintaining and reproducing the socio- economic life and in
    shaping common experience of history and present. We will focus on African Americans and white Americans and discuss what race means, and what class means – historically, culturally, and economically – in the context of the American dream.  6 cinematic representations  will serve
    us as prompts to examine in depth selected historical themes, from the Civil War to the
    present.

    Prerequisites: LALW-100 and FRSM-100

    Lecture
    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall and Spring
  
  •  

    LASS315 Cultural Cold War 3cr.


    From an ideological weapon to an instrument of peaceful understanding, the role of culture in
    the Cold War has recently become a topic of much study and debate. This course will go beyond the
    traditional parameters of the Cold War as a Soviet-American conflict fought through high
    politics, the space race, and limited hot wars, by examining the political,diplomatic, social,
    and imperial utilization of and impact on culture in Britain, the US, the Soviet Union, China, and
    their respective empires. The course will consider official policies like the Soviet VOKS
    (Society for Cultural Relations with Foreign Countries) and exchange programs in arts and
    education as well as processes like tourism, literature, film,consumerism, and sport.

    Prerequisites: LALW-200

    Spring Only
  
  •  

    LASS318 Seminar: Reading Marx 3 cr.


    A critical reading and discussion of some of Karl Marx’s writings on history, philosophy and society, plus commentary.

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100; LALW200

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS320 Fashion and Culture 3cr.


    Fashion is both a reflection of and influence on culture. This course can examine clothing in
    context, exploring the phenomenon of fashion in terms of technological developments, aesthetics,
    and body politics (gender, race, sexuality, and class) as well as its connection to cultural
    identity and the global economy.  Focusing the examination on specific key moments in fashion
    history from the French Revolution to today, the course will foster critical thinking and writing
    about fashion from a multidisciplinary perspective. The meaning of fashion at these
    select and pivotal historical periods will be gleaned through diverse sources - fiction,
    diaries, paintings, histories, and design theory- and be complemented by direct examination of
    objects.

    Prerequisites: LALW-100 & FRSM-100

    Fall Only
  
  •  

    LASS321 Bonds of Love: Attachment and the Brain 3 cr.


    This course examines intimate human relationships ranging from infancy through adulthood by exploring new findings in neuroscience as well as in developmental/relational/depth psychologies. The course treats questions about selfhood and emotion; the capacities for empathy, attachment and solitude, and received ideas of love in the relationships we form. The course includes readings in psychology, neuropsychology, fiction,  documentary and feature film clips.

     

    Prerequisites: LALW100; FRSM100; LALW200

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS323 Minds,Brains&Consciousness 3cr


    What is the mind? Some of history’s most profound
    thinkers have attempted to answer this question,
    yet the nature of the mind remains elusive and
    hotly debated in contemporary philosophy. Can the
    mysteries of conscious experience be reconciled
    with a naturalistic, scientific world view? Is
    the mind really just a kind of computer, a
    machine made of meat? What is thinking, and can
    computers do it? In this course, we will
    investigate what Francis Crick has called the
    Astonishing Hypothesis-“that “You,” your joys and
    your sorrows, your memories and your ambitions,
    your sense of personal identity and free will,
    are in fact no more than the behavior of a vast
    assembly of nerve cells and their associated
    molecules.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100 and LALW-100

    Lecture
    Fall and Spring
  
  •  

    LASS324 Nationalism in Music and Literature 3cr


    This course will focus on the interplay of folk
    and sacred music and idioms, language and
    dialect, and regionalist and nationalist
    literature in the evolution of 19th-century
    musical regionalist and nationalist expression.
    The confluence of history and geography, the
    significance of minority-language rights and
    expression, with the development of human rights
    and religious freedoms are central to
    understanding artists’, composers’ and authors’
    motivations.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100 and LALW-100

    Lecture
    Fall
  
  •  

    LASS360 Memory and Dreams 3 cr.


    This course explores the intersecting realms of memory and dream. Dreaming is an entirely subjective experience, but how objective is remembering? How do we understand phenomena like post-traumatic or implanted or false memories? How can culture construct our memories–and our forgettings–for us? How can we separate identity from memory and either from forms of fiction? The world of dream: is it meaningful, nonsense, prophetic, usable? This course treats current neuroscience and neuropsychology,  film clips, case histories, fiction, and analytic theory. In preparation for the final project,  students keep a nightly dream journal. The course treats the nature of consciousness and subjectivity, the existence of a coherent self over time, and the creative uses to which memory and dream may be put.

    Prerequisites: LALW100, FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS401 On Truth and Value 3 cr.


    The course is organized around the following core questions: What is truth and is it attainable? Why is truth important? How do we get to know objective reality? What is a “good life” in the ethical sense, and why should one desire to live a “good life?”

    Prerequisites: LALW100, FRSM100

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    LASS402 Minds,Brains&Consciousness 3 cr.


    What is the mind? Some of history’s most
    profound thinkers have attempted to answer this
    question, yet the nature of the mind remains
    elusive and hotly debated in contemporary
    philosophy. Can the mysteries of conscious
    experience be reconciled with a naturalistic,
    scientific world view? Is the mind really just a
    kind of computer, a machine made of meat? What
    is thinking, and can computers do it? In this
    course, we will investigate what Francis Crick
    has called the Astonishing Hypothesis-“that
    “You,” your joys and your sorrows, your memories
    and your ambitions, your sense of personal
    identity and free will, are in fact no more than
    the behavior of a vast assembly of nerve cells
    and their associated molecules.”

    Prerequisites: LALW-100 and FRSM-100

    Lecture
    Fall
  
  •  

    LASS403 China-U.S. Relations 3cr


    This course explores the relationship between
    China and the United States from its beginning to
    the present. Unlike conventional narratives of
    Sino-U.S. relations focusing on politics and
    diplomatic relations, this course will cover more
    broadly social, cultural,and economic
    interactions, such as mutual perceptions and
    images,cultural/educational exchanges, migration
    and foreign policies, and international trade.
    Accordingly, we will look at a wide array of
    individuals and institutions such as
    missionaries, educators, merchants, migrants,
    non-government organizations, corporations and
    mass media rather than nation-states as the sole
    actors on the stage. We will place China and the
    United States in their regional and historical
    contexts while focusing on the interactive
    dynamic to show how their relations shaped their
    own histories as well as the global history. This
    course is to help students develop a solid
    understanding of the evolution of Sino-U.S.
    relations over time as well as a sharp and well
    informed
    perspective on current challenges and
    opportunities, especially the new face of
    Sino-U.S.relations with China’s rise as a major
    economic powerhouse and the repositioning of the
    United States in the world. In addition to
    learning about the substance of these facets of
    Sino-U.S. relations, the course is designed to
    teach several important skills to students:
    informed reading of various types of sources,
    historical and critical thinking, policy analysis
    and debates,oral presentation and writing, and
    teamwork. Different assignments are designed to
    develop and advance these skills.

    Prerequisites: FRSM-100 and LALW-100

    Seminar
    Fall
  
  •  

    LASS404 Asian Diaspora and American Experience 3cr


    This course surveys Asian American history (1850-
    present) from international and global
    perspectives. It starts with the massive
    migrations of different Asian groups to the U.S.
    from the Gold Rush to WWII, focusing on themes
    such as colonialism, imperialism, labor,
    communities, legal exclusion, and foreign
    policies. Then it moves on to the great changes
    within the Asian American community since 1965
    and how Asian Americans are changing American
    society and the relations between the United
    States and Asia.

    Prerequisites: LALW-100 and FRSM-100

    Seminar
    Spring

Photography

  
  •  

    MPPH100 Intro Photo for Non-Majors 3 cr.


    A beginning course for students with an interest in creative work and study in black and white photography. Teaches exposure controls, camera operation and rudimentary film development and printing.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    MPPH206 Introduction to Digital Photography for Non-Majors 3 cr.


    An introduction to the digital darkroom that offers a solid foundation in digital imaging skills. Technical focus is on the current array of input, editing and output options. The content of student work is addressed in periodic critiques, and class discussions emphasize the role of the computer in contemporary photography.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    MPPH240 Sophomore Major Studio I 6 cr.


    This required sophomore course is the first in the progression of major studio/hybrid seminars
    in photography. The course addresses the aesthetic and technical dimensions of contemporary practice in black and white analog photography. Proficiency in B&W darkroom techniques is
    emphasized. At the discretion of the instructor, the class will concentrate on the use of either
    4X5 view cameras or small/medium format cameras for the semester. Weekly assignments and
    critiques familiarize students with the importance of this equipment in contemporary
    practice as well as the history of the medium. Slide presentations and field trips are combined
    with the principles of optics, cameras, film, photographic chemistry and darkroom technique. Studetns are required to attend the regular lecture series that occurs within the limits of scheduled course contact hours.

    Prerequisites: Majors Only

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Departmental Requirement
    Fall
  
  •  

    MPPH241 Sophomore Major Studio II 6 cr.


    This required sophomore course is the second in the progression of major studio/hybrid seminars in photography. The course builds upon the base of knowledge students gained about black and white analog photography in Sophomore Major Studio I. Advanced B&W darkroom techniques and fine silver gelatin printing  are emphasized. The class concentrates on the use of the camera format they were not exposed to in Sophomore Major Studio 4X5 view cameras or
    small/medium format cameras- for the semester. Weekly assignments and critiques familiarize
    students with the importance of this equipment in contemporary practive as well as in the history
    of the medium. Slide presentations and field trips are combined with principles of optics,
    cameras, film, photographic chemistry and darkroom technique. Students are required to attend the regular lecture series that occurs within the limits of scheduled course contact hours.

    Prerequisites: MPPH241

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Departmental Requirement
    Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH303 Alternative Camera, Alternative Techniques 3 cr.


    An introduction to non-silver processes such as palladium and cyanotype printing and to unusual types of cameras including plastic cameras, pinholes, and others. This class will include regular demonstrations as well as critique and research techniques for seeking out unusual photographic materials.

    Critique
    Departmental Elective
  
  •  

    MPPH304 Lighting for Photography 3 cr.


    This course is designed to introduce students to the fundamentals of photographic
    lighting. Students will explore the uses of strobe, tungsten and ambient light in both studio and location settings. Classes will consist of lectures on a wide array of approaches to the use of lighting, in-class demonstrations, and critique of student work. Over the course of the semester we will endeavor to create a collaborative conversation regarding the use of lighting and its integral relationship to the photographic image.

    Prerequisites: MPPH240 or permission of instructor

    Critique
  
  •  

    MPPH323 Topics in Photography 3 cr.


    Courses with this title offer in-depth studies of special topics in photography. Past seminars have included “Ways of Seeing”, “Photo Book Making”, “Portrait”, and “Afterlife: Professional Practices in Photography”.

    Prerequisites: MPPH240 or permission of instructor

    Critique
    Culturally Diverse Content
    Departmental Elective
  
  •  

    MPPH350 Visiting Artist Seminar 3 cr.


    This course introduces students to leading practitioners in the field of contemporary photography through frequent lectures by visiting artists, historians, and curators. The course also includes readings and discussion, film screenings, slide lectures, and visits to area exhibitions.

    Prerequisites: concurrent enrollment in Junior Projects, Senior Projects or Senior Thesis

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    Departmental Requirement
    Fall/Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH360 Major Studio: Digital Photography 6 cr.


    This course is a rigorous introduction to the digital tools available to photographers. The class covers a wide array of topics, with emphasis placed on digital image capture and the use of the computer as a parallel tool to traditional photographic practices. Weekly critiques address students’ aesthetic and technical progress and are supplemented by readings, lectures, and discussions that evaluate the role of the computer in contemporary photography. Students are meant to develop a solid understanding of these digital imaging practices as well as an adaptable approach to emerging technologies.

    Prerequisites: MPPH260 and MPPH261

    Seminar/Hybrid
    Culturally Diverse Content
    Departmental Requirement
    Fall
  
  •  

    MPPH361 Junior Projects 3 cr.


    In this required course, students develop and refine a personal vision of their own through long-term photography based projects, more advanced technical knowledge, and a deeper familiarity with uses of the medium. Weekly critiques, slide presentations and group discussions are important elements of this class.

    Prerequisites: MPPH260, MPPH261, MPPH360 and concurrent enrollment with the same instructor in MPPH350critique

    Culturally Diverse Content
    Departmental Requirement
    Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH374 Photo: Documentary 3 cr.


    This course provides an overview of the history, theory, and politics implied in making documentary work. Assignments and weekly critiques of student projects will encourage our greater understanding of the world and of the photographic language of documentary. By the end of the semester, students will produce a coherent body of work following a specific subject chosen in consultation with the instructor. Related readings, discussions, and slide presentations will be introduced. Formely titled: Documentary Seminar

    Prerequisites: MPPH240 or MPPH241

    Critique
    Culturally Diverse Content
    Departmental Elective
    Fall & Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH377 Landscape Photo 3 cr.


    A course designed to explore the contemporary landscape, both with the camera and through readings on the land and on environmental concerns. Emphasis is on student photographic work, discussion of imagery and literature, and developing a personal perspective on the human relationship to the land.

    Prerequisites: MPPH240 or MPPH241 or permission of instructor.

    Critique
    Culturally Diverse and Sustainabilty Content
    Fall/Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH379 Image and Object 3 cr.


    Image and Object is a cross-media course that examines some of the possible intersections of photography and sculpture. The course will provide demonstrations of a number of photographic and sculptural processes, lectures about artists who work with both mediums as well as critiques, field trips and visiting artists. The emphasis in this course will be on making hybrid objects, on the development of individual projects and critiques.

    Prerequisites: jr. level or above

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    MPPH392 PH Course Assistantship


    A course assistantship allows qualified
    sophomores, juniors, and seniors to assist a
    faculty member with whom they have studied
    previously. Duties may include set up, assisting
    with demonstrations and critiques during class
    meetings. Course assistants may not grade
    students. Students may register for only one
    3-credit course assistantship each semester, and
    no more than two such assistantships may count
    toward degree requirements.
    Students selected by faculty to be course
    assistants submit a Course Assistantship form
    with the faculty and chair’s signatures to the
    Registrar during registration and no later than
    the end of the Add/Drop period. Students who are
    performing a Teaching Assistantship should follow
    Independent Study procedures

    Prerequisites: By Permission of the Instructor

    Fall/Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH398 PH Internship 3 cr.


    An internship is a supervised professional
    experience that allows you to use classroom
    training in a real work environment, develop your
    skills, focus your career goals, and make
    professional contacts.
    MassArt offers students enrolled in a degree
    program the opportunity to register an internship
    for credit. An internship counts as 3 studio
    elective credits. To receive credit, the
    internship must meet our basic internship
    requirements, be approved by a faculty advisor,
    and registered before you start the internship.

    Prerequisites: By Permission of Instructor

    Fall/Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH399 PH Independent Study 3 cr.


    Juniors and seniors who have a specific studio
    project which cannot be accomplished within the
    structure of a course may arrange to work with a
    faculty member on an independent basis. The
    Independent Study form (available in the
    Registrar’s Office) includes a description of the
    project. Students may take only one 3-credit
    independent study each semester, and no more than
    four independent studies will count toward the
    degree.
    Independent Study forms, with faculty and the
    chair’s signatures, should be submitted to the
    Registrar during registration and not later than
    the Add/Drop deadline.

    Prerequisites: By Permission of Instructor

    Fall/Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH406 Polaroid 20X24 3 cr.


    This course is centered on using the specialized Polaroid 20X24 camera. Students work directly with the instructor to create work based in the studio. Students will learn lighting and collaborative techniques unique to the Polaroid.

    Undergraduate Elective
    Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH450 Visiting Artist Seminar 3 cr.


    This course introduces students to leading practitioners in the field of contemporary photography. Talks by visiting artists, historians and curators are organized by Instructors. On alternate weeks, the course breaks into sections to discuss the previous week’s lecture, assigned readings, view additional materials, or visit area exhibitions.

    Prerequisites: enrollment with the same instructor in MPPH361, MPPH460 or MPPH461

    Lecture/Seminar
    Culturally Diverse Content
    Departmental Requirement
    Spring
  
  •  

    MPPH460 Senior Projects 3 cr.


    Students develop a specific project to be worked on throughout the semester and formally presented at final review. Weekly critiques of student work will be the emphasis of the course with time dedicated to developing artist statements, a written thesis paper, and preparation for a career in photography.

    Prerequisites: MPPH260, MPPH261, MPPH360, MPPH361 and concurrent enrollment with the same instructor in MPPH450

    Critique
    Culturally Diverse Content
    Departmental Requirement
    Fall
  
  •  

    MPPH461 Senior Thesis 3 cr.


    In the final semester of the major, students are expected to complete a body of work, participate in a class exhibition, finalize a written thesis and complete preparation for pursuing a career in photography. The class will consist of critique, slide lecturers, student presentations, and discussions on assigned readings.

    Prerequisites: MPPH260, MPPH261, MPPH360, MPPH361, MPPH460 and concurrent enrollment with the same instructor in MPPH450

    Critique
    Culturally Diverse Content
    Departmental Requirement
    Spring

Studio for Interrelated Media

  
  •  

    MPSM204 Lighting for Events and Installations 3 cr.


    This course will explore the use of theatrical and commercial lighting, dimming and control units. The class will visit professional installations to learn the hardware and safety practices from working technicians. Students will design and build their own class projects.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    MPSM205 Stagecraft & Technical Production 3 cr.


    This course aims to demystify basic lighting, rigging, sound and staging practices. Technical workshops will be conducted during class time where students work in teams to complete assignments. Demonstrations and lectures also include site planning, power distribution, and safety in the workspace. Students will prepare and present their own personal projects using the class as crew and SIM’s technology.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
    Fall
  
  •  

    MPSM207 Beat Research 3 cr.


    This is a studio course about electronic music and culture. Students explore the techniques of sampling, sequencing and drum programming using current music making software including Reason and Ableton Live. Most assignments involve the creation of music/sound but we also address techniques of  video production and performance.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    MPSM209 Light as a Sculptural Element 3 cr.


    To explore light as a sculptural element in art making, this class will focus primarily on the application of light as a transformative medium in all visual art practices. The class will examine the works of artists such as Thomas Wilfred, James Turrell, Ann Hamilton, Won Ju Lim, Diana Thater, Wolfgang Laib, Cai Guo-Qiang, Robert Irwin, Shirin Neshat, Bill Viola, Olafur Eliasson and many others. This course is designed to familiarize the student with a wide variation of art practices and to encourage a sense of discovery in relation to the medium of light and in everyday observations.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Sustainabilty Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    MPSM211 Interrelated Media Practice 3 cr.


    This is a critique studio course where students
    produce and present interrelated media artworks in
    progress and/or in final form. The course is
    closely modeled after the Studio for Interrelated
    Media Major Studio course, but with a smaller
    class size. Additionally, rotating faculty also
    present emerging topics related to interrelated
    media for discussion and exploration. For SIM
    Majors, this course provides a more intimate
    setting to work through artworks in progress. For
    Non-majors, it is an opportunity to expand one’s
    artistic practice, interact with artists from
    other disciplines, and refine public speaking
    skills. There is no prerequisite and it is an open
    elective.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
    Fall/Spring
  
  •  

    MPSM220 Sustainable Projects in Art & Design 3cr.


    Sustainable art and design focuses on how to
    leave our future more just, healthy, and
    environmentally stable than it is today.  Through
    careful consideration of materials, life cycles,
    subjects, audiences, economies, and many other
    aspects of daily life, we will imagine and make
    projects that address significant issues
    resulting from environmental impacts on human and
    animal societies. Open to students from all
    departments, this course focuses on developing
    projects in an interdisciplinary studio setting
    that address issues of sustainability on our
    campus, in our city, and in the larger global
    context. Practice methodologies such as field
    research, collaboration, and charrette, proposal,
    and brief presentation forms are introduced
    through a series of assignments leading up to a
    half semester independent project.  Through
    readings, field trips, studio visits, and
    critique, the course examines revolutionary
    projects in sustainability in design and art
    fields today.  Open to freshmen through juniors,
    this class allows students to work in the medium
    of their choice while focusing on research and
    development in the area of sustainability.

    Undergraduate Elective
    Spring
  
  •  

    MPSM221 Interdisciplinary Video 3cr


    This is a studio course in which students learn
    the basics of video production - from shooting to
    editing to the use of effects and finally
    publishing/screening final works.  The class
    explores the inclusion of video in installations,
    live performance, and other experimental
    applications. The contemporary practice of video
    production is presented within the historical
    context of the moving image from silent films up
    to the modern Youtube era.  Additionally,
    introductory video mapping technologies and video
    sound techniques are presented. The course
    combines lectures, demonstrations, workshops,
    visiting artists, and both collaborative and
    individual assignments.

    Hybrid Studio Critique
    Undergraduate Elective
    Every Other Fall
  
  •  

    MPSM272 Sound Performance 3 cr.


    Students will learn elements of sound performance, technical considerations including vocal techniques, content development and presentational context. Students present live sound pieces on a weekly basis.

    Critique
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    MPSM273 Intro to Sound Studio 3 cr.


    Students will learn principles of electroacoustic and digital sound processing, including audio recording, editing, mixing, and signal processing techniques. Students are required to present “live” or recorded sound pieces. Sound studio includes analog and digital synthesis, analog and digital recording and editing systems, signal processors. Weekly assignments. Fall term only.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    MPSM276 Studio for Interrelated Media/Major Studio 3 cr.


    Sophomore Major Studio. This is a studio class in which individuals and groups present and discuss work in media of their choice such as audio, video, computer, performance, publishing, and production of events that interrelate media. Each week, student presentations of work are organized into performances and exhibitions produced by students who select, schedule and technically support the presentation. (SIM276, 376, 476)

    Prerequisites: SIM majors only. Take two semesters of this course.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Departmental Requirement
    Fall
  
  •  

    MPSM277 The Moving Body 3 cr.


    Movement is basic to all life, from the atomic to the astronomic level. This course explores the human body as an instrument for making art in space and time. Students will practice various physical disciplines based on contemporary dance techniques, yoga, and contact improvisation for example. They will be encouraged to observe movement in the world around them as source material. Students will work individually and in groups to create their own movement pieces. In-depth critiques, discussion, and revision of works will reinforce the importance of process in this class. Students will complete several short assignments as well as one final movement project of their own choosing. This course will also consider sound, objects, and environments in relation to movement. Students will be encouraged to make direct relations between their principal fields of artistic interest and time-based performance. Some readings and video will be included to introduce students to the various forms that movement has taken in twentieth century live art.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Culturally Diverse Content
  
  •  

    MPSM307 On the Spot 3 cr.


    As human beings, we carry with us precious instruments for expression - the body and the voice. This course explores perception - looking and listening - as a tool for making instantaneous performance choices. We will work through a series of improvisational techniques from concepts of “action theater” to contact improvisation. Students will work individually, in duets, and in groups to explore gesture, space, time, energy, intention and the voice. We will experiment with the voice by “sounding” as well as by speaking. The course may also consider objects and environments in relation to performance. Students will be encouraged to make direct relations between their principal fields of artistic interest and time-based, improvisational performance. Some readings and video may be included to introduce students to the various forms that improvisation has taken in twenty-first century live art.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
  •  

    MPSM309 Public Art 3 cr.


    This course will cover many aspects of the field of public art as it impinges upon issues relating to architecture, temporal events, permanent and temporary installations, sculpture, and environmental design. The emphasis will be on creating and developing individual concepts for public projects with sketches, written proposals, plans, models, demos, video/audio tapes, and other appropriate materials. There will be ongoing discussions of the development of projects, from initial concept to complete budgeted proposal.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
  
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    MPSM311 Electronic Projects for Artists II: Digital 3 cr.


    This course introduces students to computer interfaces for connecting interactive sculpture, performance and installation with software. Course content includes microcontrollers, electrical sensors, custom-made circuits and programming. No previous programming experience is necessary.

    Prerequisites: MPSM337

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
  
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    MPSM313X Beat Research II 3 cr.


    This course is designed for students who have already taken Beat Research I and wish to continue making art in a community of Beatmakers and electronic musicians. Emphasis will be on critiques, the sharing of advanced techniques and the organizing of media for presentation outside of the class (audio CD, video DVD, live performance etc)

    Prerequisites: MPSM207

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Culturally Diverse Content
    All College Elective
  
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    MPSM317 Event Planning and Production II 3 cr.


    This is the second semester of a year-long course. This course is for those that are actively involved in organizing and producing events and exhibitions throughout the year. However the emphasis is on events that are complex enough that they require at least a year to plan. It is required for Eventworks producers and Godine Family gallery managers. Students will meet with the instructor one-on-one throughout the semester, additionally the class will meet periodically as a group to discuss general production issues. It is also open to those not involved in Eventworks or Godine Gallery but that have another event(s) in mind. By permission of instructor. This is a one-year long course.

    Prerequisites: MPSM 319X Event Planning and Production

    Lecture/Seminar
  
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    MPSM336 Events Planning and Production 3 cr.


    This course is for those that are actively involved in organizing and producing events and exhibitions throughout the year. It is required for Eventworks Producers and Godine Family Gallery Managers. Students will meet with the instructor one on one throughout the semester, additionally the class will meet periodically as a group to discuss general production issues. It is also open to those not involved in Eventworks or Godine Gallery but that have another event (s) in mind.

    Prerequisites: by permission of instructor

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
  
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    MPSM337 Electronic Projects for Artists 3 cr.


    The purpose of this studio course is to provide skills and information that will be useful for artists who use electronic devices in their artworks.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
  
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    MPSM338 Adv.Techniques/Sound Pro 3cr.


    This is a sound production course offering advanced experience in sound recording and studio
    techniques. Students will have the opportunity to work with multi-track recording, signal
    processing, mastering techniques and surround sound production. Both the technical and
    aesthetic aspects of creating sound works for a variety of mediums including music production,
    sound art, installation and sound for moving image will be covered. Students will produce and
    critique their work in the both the SIM Sound Studio, Design and Media Center and with the
    Pozen surround sound systems. The course will included tutorials, individual exercises, group
    projects, and guests from the sound production field.

    Prerequisites: MPSM273

    Spring Only
  
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    MPSM342 Methods & Design/Art Exhibition 3 cr.


    In this course, students will be guided through
    the design/build fundamentals of installing an
    art exhibit, preparing artwork for installation
    and the construction methods used in producing
    exhibitions. Students will have the opportunity
    to learn new skills that can be applied to
    preparing and installing their own artwork. The
    course, which takes place in a classroom and
    gallery setting, will start with an introduction
    to the fundamentals (hardware, tools,
    understanding basic floor plans, construction,
    fabrication, sustainable materials, shipping,
    lighting and basic A/V installation) followed by
    a study of concept and design processes (exhibit
    design, curation, registration), installation
    procedures and finally, install/de-install a
    professional exhibit at MassArt’s Bakalar and
    Paine Galleries.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
    Fall/Spring
  
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    MPSM345 Internet Culture & Technology 3 cr.


    This course will explore topics related to
    artists’ use of the Internet as a medium for
    creative production and distribution. Lectures
    and discussions will cover topics relevant to
    artists’ work on the Web including: social media,
    the free software movement, censorship, humor,
    streaming media, Net Neutrality, tele- robotics,
    programming and web- based multimedia. Techniques
    for creating web content will be demonstrated
    using commercial and free software. Some examples
    will involve writing code, but no previous
    programming experience is assumed. All students
    will be required to create a website as a final
    project and after being given options, they will
    be free to choose methods and content most
    appropriate for their own process in the creation
    of work.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    All College Elective
    Fall
  
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    MPSM346 Interdisciplinary Projects in Sustainability 3 cr.


    Sustainable art and design focuses on how to leave our future more just,healthy and
    environmentally stable than it is today. Through careful consideration of
    materials,lifecycles,subjects, audiences,economies,and many other aspects of
    daily life, we will imagine and make projects that address significant issues resulting from
    environmental impacts on human and animal societies. Open to students from all departments,
    this course focuses on developing projects in nterdisciplinary studio settings that address
    issues of sustainability on our campus,in our city,and in the larger global context. Research
    practices,collaboration and charrette forms will be explored through a series of assignments
    leading up to a half semester independent project.


    Through readings,field trips,studio vosots and critique,we will learn about revolutionary
    projects in sustainability in design and art fields today. Open to juniors and seniors, this
    class will allow students to work in the medium of their choice while focusing on research and
    development in the area of sustainability.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Sustainabilty Content
    Undergraduate Elective
    Spring

  
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    MPSM349 Performance, Art & Politics 3 cr.


    In this studio course, students will be introduced to historical examples of politically-engaged performance art as a context for creating their own work. This will include the creation of original performance art works by adapting techniques which were developed by the Czech Underground which built a platform for the artists-run “Velvet Revolution” of 1989. For students without experience in video, the course will also introduce the basic tools and principles of video production.

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Sustainabilty Content
    All College Elective
  
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    MPSM357 Experimental Ensembles 3cr.


    Experimental Ensembles is an opportunity for students to collaborate in significant ways on
    works that involve various groupings of student ensembles engaging in collective actions that are
    both performance and non-performance based. The class explores the artistic practice of
    conducting, composition, and collaboration along-side the experience of following the
    direction of others in order to create an artwork that has a public impact.  Students will have to
    the opportunity to use each other as actors, agents, units, and parts of their creative vision
    in varied environments and alternative spaces. Topics included the examination of historical
    works that have emerged from: the Fluxus art movement; happenings of the ‘60s; performative
    installation; live choral-based configurations; experiments with sound, light, motion, site, and
    performance; as well as, alternative genres such as live cinema. An ensemble can be a Flash mob, a
    gathering of organized movements and soundings on a park walk, mobile sculptural elements, or a
    series of instructions that a group or public is asked to follow. We will work in large ensembles
    and also experiment with smaller forms within the group.

    Undergraduate Elective
    Fall and Spring
  
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    MPSM376 Studio for Interrelated Media 3 cr.


    This is a year long studio class in which individuals and groups present and discuss work in media of their choice such as audio, video, computer, performance, publishing, and production of events that interrelate media. Each week, student presentations of work are organized into performances and exhibitions produced by students who select, schedule and technically support the presentation. (SIM276, 376, 476)

    Prerequisites: 6 credits of MPSM 276

    Hybrid Studio/Critique
    Departmental Requirement
    Fall
  
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    MPSM390 Advanced Interactive Digital Projects 3cr.


    This is a course for students who have some experience with creating works in digital media
    who want to research and develop personal projects for projections, installations, screen
    interfaces or the web.  New technical content to be introduced in this course includes a variety
    of sensors for student experimentation along with associated techniques for interactivity in
    physical proximity and over the Internet. Recent small form factor platforms for digital media
    production (e.g. Raspberry Pi, Beaglebone Black, Photon, etc.) are also included in the course
    along with software examples.

    Prerequisites: MPSM-311 or MPSM-377 or MPSM-345 or Permission of Instructor

    Fall Only
 

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