DMD New/Variable Topics Courses - Spring 2021

DMD New/Variable Topics Courses - Spring 2021

DMD students - Below is the list of special topics  courses and regularly taught courses with a special emphasis to be offered in Spring 2021. As all of our courses are being offered as Distance Learning or Online, they are open to students across campus. Just be aware of the policies regarding home campus and student fees (the majority of your courses must be taken on your home campus). Many of these courses will not be offered again for another year or more, so take advantage of this great opportunity, if you are able! The descriptions of all other DMD courses can be found in the UConn Course Catalog

**NOTE: The Campus listed is the primary campus, although open to students at both campuses.

To request permission numbers, please use these forms:

DMD New/Variable Topics Courses - Spring 2021

DMD 3210/5210 - Experimental & Alternative Techniques

Th/Th 5:00 - 7:30pm, Distance Learning, Storrs

Professor: Heejoo Kim

Motion for UI/UX

DMD 2610 - Intro to Digital Humanities

Th/Th 12:30-1:45pm, Distance Learning, Storrs

Professor: Greg Colati

Introduction to Digital Humanities

DMD 3998.001 - Digital Ethics

M/W 12:20-1:35pm, Distance Learning, Storrs

Professor: John Murphy

Required Prerequisites: DMD 2710 Social Media Business Applications, or permission of the instructor

Digital Ethics is a critical component in the age of social media. This class will cover Data Privacy, Netiquette, Defamation, Fake News, Discrimination and Harassment, and more. Learn to put ethics first and do the right thing when on any digital media platform. Understand the difference between what you can do and what you should do. What are digital ethics in the workplace? What are your rights? 70% of employers take disciplinary actions against employees for social media misuse. Learn why and what you can do to stay within the rules. Learn what you can do to make social and digital media a force for good.

DMD 3998.002 / HIST 3098 - Historical Fiction in Games and Film 

T 12:30-3pm  / Th 2-3:15pm, Distance Learning, Storrs

Professor: James Coltrain

** This course will count as 3 credits toward the “Art / Design / Digital Media / Film History or Theory” courses required in the 2019-20 and 2020-21 DMD Plans of Study.

This course examines the meanings and messages of games and films depicting key historical events, figures, and eras.  Students will concentrate on the slippery issue of accuracy, reading primary historical documents from the periods in question to evaluate game and film depictions by accuracy in detail, spirit, and subject matter.  The course will also consider how these media reflect popular myths and public memory, examining not only scholarly and critical reactions, but also how games and film influence one another, and how the techniques of passive and active entertainment can affect how audiences understand the past.

DMD 3998.003 - 2D Game Art

T/Th 3:30 - 6:00pm, Distance Learning, Storrs

Professor: James Coltrain

This course will cover a variety of techniques for creating 2D art assets for video games.  Students will first learn workflows for rapid iterations of concept art for environments and characters, including research for aesthetic and cultural references.  The course will then cover practical techniques for 2D asset creation in the Unity pipeline, including preparing sprites sheets and rigging 2D characters for animation, texturing techniques from hand painting to substance-based PBR materials, and finally work in graphic design and photo collage to create 2D assets for 3D games, such as documents and signage. Throughout the course students will also examine basic principles of 2D art including light, color, and perspective.

DMD 3998.004 - Previsualization & Storyboarding

M/W 12:20 - 2:50pm

Professor: Dennis Recchia

Previsualization & Storyboarding is a course designed to teach and encourage our DMD students to research and draw upon the knowledge and skills gained as a DMD artist, and interpret, using any number of methods, traditional, digital or practical, while contributing their artistic sensibilities to enhance the creative vision of the writer, director or production designer.

In this course imaging is the primary method to communicate in animation, film, and advertising. Drawing is the foundation of Visual Development. In this rapidly expanding digital world, drawing is imperative. Paper and pencil still are the fastest and most economical way to communicate and collaborate. Students will learn effective methods to developing communicative concept development and storyboards.

DMD 3998.006 - Emerging Interactive Technology

Online (WW) / Asynchronous, Storrs

Professor: Joel Salisbury

Prerequisites: DMD 3035. Recommended prep: DMD 3475. Prior coding experience is helpful, but not required. 

Alexa, Siri, Google Home, and Cortana: these technologies provide users with voice interfaces to information and enable them to issue commands and perform transactions. Facial recognition, motion detection, gesture control, and NFC: these technologies provide users with the ability to interact with devices and software with minimal physical contact.

This course explores the standards, design tools, and methods that allow designers to effectively take advantage of unique and emerging user interface mechanics. The course will cover the underlying technologies such as speech recognition, gesture capture, facial recognition libraries. Students will also prototype and iterate on product ideas which take advantage of these technologies.

DMD 3998.007 - Virtual Narrative Film Production

T/Th 2:00-4:30pm, Distance Learning, Storrs

Professor: Tanju Ozdemir

Required Prerequisites: DMD 2810 Digital Cinematography or DMD 3998 / DRAM 3145 Film Writing

Through lectures, readings, demos and hand-on exercises, and project presentations students will examine each stage of the production process of a virtual narrative short film from script development through post-production. Students will learn responsibilities of a narrative film director, production and directing terminologies for proper communication with a film crew and actors on a virtual film set. 

 Learning Objectives

  1. Articulate and translate a narrative from page to screen with special emphasis on visual and aural structures of a scene 
  2. Develop aesthetic sensibilities necessary for appreciating and analyzing the technique of storytelling in a dramatic script 
  3. Understand the interconnectedness of pre-production, production and post-production of a narrative film 
  4. Design a filming plan using tools such as shot lists, storyboards, and beat sheets
  5. Acquire a basic understanding of the director/actor/visual relationship from casting, artistic collaborations, on-set performance, to camera blocking
  6. Develop and explore a critical perspective on various approaches with their underlying technical aspects for narrative filmmaking
  7. Manage and collaborate with a small film crew
  8. Challenge and expand your creative abilities as a storyteller through assigned projects

DMD 3998.008 / HRTS 3540 - Visual Storytelling Through Human Rights Archives

Fri 12:20-2:50pm, Distance Learning, Storrs

Professor: Catherine Masud

** HONORS course designation; Recommended Prerequisite: DMD 2210 Moving Image & Sequence

This practice-based course will introduce students to the use of human rights archival materials in documentary storytelling. In the first part of the course students will study the technique and aesthetics of documentary treatments utilizing archival materials, while also gaining exposure to archival best practices, specifically looking at the Thomas J. Dodd Nuremberg Trial collections held in the University of Connecticut Library Archives. Later in the course students will produce a collaborative documentary film project that integrates primary archival materials from the Nuremberg collections, filmed interviews, and their own student generated graphics, animations, and audio treatments. In addition, students will develop individual creative projects on a human rights-related theme using archival collections to enable them to reflect on the importance of history, witnessing, and memory in human rights film practice.

DMD 3998.009 - Toward Equity: The Digital Media & Design Speaker Series 

Online (WW) / Asynchronous, * Storrs; Open to Stamford students

1-credit course, no permission number required

Professor: Clarissa Ceglio

To paraphrase James Baldwin, nothing can be changed until it is faced. This is certainly true of the inequities that have historically shaped digital media content, fields, and careers. This one-credit course invites us to face the issues by hearing from--and actively engaging with--the artists, media scholars, and professionals from film, game, cultural and other sectors who are participating in Toward Equity: The Digital Media & Design Speaker Series. In addition to learning about how issues of equity manifest in their work, creative processes, and careers, we will reflect on how our own practice can support greater equity, diversity, and inclusion. 

 * Online (WW) courses never meet in person, nor are you expected to be available at any particular time for classroom instruction. This course is taught asynchronously with no pre-assigned meeting times. Students will have access to class materials online using HuskyCT.

DMD 3998.014 - Museums and Activism

Online (WW) /Asynchronous * Storrs; Open to Stamford students

Professor: Clarissa Ceglio

** This course will count as 3 credits toward the “Art / Design / Digital Media / Film History or Theory” courses required in the 2019-20 and 2020-21 DMD Plans of Study.

Museums are sites of activism, protest, and struggle over such critical issues as representation, cultural ownership, public accountability, and national belonging. Through a series of case studies, we will explore the history of activists, museum practitioners, and others who, from the late 1800s to the present, have challenged museums to become more inclusive, equitable, and active in civic life. Equipped with that background, we’ll grapple with one of the most difficult questions facing the field today: Should museums be a medium for social justice and activism on such urgent civic issues as climate change, voter’s rights, immigration, and anti-Black racism? What are the opportunities, limits, and issues for institutions that step beyond traditional notions of museum neutrality? Students will use this knowledge to help present the past, present, and future of museum activism in digital form, working with a team of scholars and practitioners on a Greenhouse Studios digital publication.

* Online (WW) courses never meet in person, nor are you expected to be available at any particular time for classroom instruction. This course is taught asynchronously with no pre-assigned meeting times. Students will have access to class materials online using HuskyCT.

DMD 3998.016 - Digital Media Analytics Lab (SMACC)

M/W 2:00 - 3:15pm

Professor: John Murphy

Prerequisites: DMD 2700 Digital Media Strategies for Business 1, 3720 Digital Media Analytics; permission of instructor

Advanced Digital Analytics is a capstone, experiential learning course designed to introduce experienced students to cutting-edge, social media listening and intelligence platforms and techniques. Students should be able to leverage this technology to inform market research, develop a marketing or communications strategy, analyze campaigns and digital initiatives, and execute ongoing digital brand listening, crisis management, competitive intelligence, content analysis or reputation management campaigns.

Learning Outcomes: By the end of the semester, students will be able to:

  • Write basic Boolean operators and advanced Boolean logic to generate a query
  • Analyze real-time and historic digital trends
  • Deploy data to develop a brand strategy or marketing plan
  • Identify business challenges and be able to investigate those challenges using social listening
  • Evaluate client needs and objectives through listening and communication skills
  • Complete the Talkwalker platform basic certification
  • Create social media insight reports
  • Create social media dashboards
  • Cover live events via social media monitoring
  • Manage ongoing brand management initiatives via social intelligence

DMD 3998.017 - Creative Producing for Independent Film 

Tu/Th 3:30 – 5:00pm, Distance Learning, Storrs

Professor: Nikki Justice 

Required Prerequisites: DMD 2700 Intro to Digital Media Business Strategies or DMD 2210 Moving Image & Sequence

 In this course you will examine all phases of the filmmaking process, from conception to distribution, through the eyes of a creative producer. The emphasis will be on producing in today’s market by identifying unique narrative content while navigating a rapidly changing entertainment landscape. Topics include the art of the pitch, story development, evaluating the marketplace, financing the production, distribution strategy and movie marketing. Students will leave this course with an understanding of how to get their films seen by audiences, in addition to getting a viable project off the ground in our current economic and cultural landscape.

 Learning Objectives:

  • Understand what makes a story unique and how to source a narrative
  • Learn the job function and various disciplines of a creative producer
  • Develop a production and financing plan for individual projects
  • Create "look books" for pitching to executives, financiers and agents
  • Understand distribution platforms, alternative revenue streams and what buyers are looking for
  • Develop marketing and transmedia storytelling initiatives to reach a niche audience

DMD 3998.z81 - Brand Studio

M/W 2:30 - 4:30pm, Stamford

Professor: Phil Dwire

Brand Studio is designed to explore and deploy the principles of strategic branding and identity design across traditional and digital environments.

In this course, you will learn (1) brand basics, (2) strategic approaches to brand identity design and development, (3) how to execute strategic brand management to establish strong, competitive market positions, (4) how to value brands, and assess brand equity, and (5) best practices across a variety of industries, organizations, and marketing programs.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand and identify the important elements of branding
  • Learn how to conduct brand research and audits
  • Develop competitive positioning and unique value propositions
  • Design compelling, versatile brand identities across traditional and digital touchpoints
  • Manage assets and brand marketing programs
  • Evaluate and value the ROI of brand initiatives

DMD 4475 - Web and Interactive Media Design Practicum

M/W 9:05-11:35am, Distance Learning, Stamford

Professor: Sue Huang

Advanced topics in web and interactive media focused around the topic of synthetic realities on the web. Planned projects for this course include making work utilizing WebVR, deepfakes (synthetic media), and fake news (generated text). Class will be a mix of technical tutorial and independent/collaborative studio work. Students coming into this course should be comfortable with HMTL, CSS, and JavaScript, and should be comfortable programming at an intermediate to advanced level independently. Previous knowledge of Python is helpful but not required.