The Media Studies program at Trent takes an interdisciplinary approach to the understanding of media practices and effects. Students take courses in a range of disciplines including Cultural Studies, Anthropology, Philosophy, Computing & Information Systems, Canadian Studies, and Sociology, engaging with a range of ethical, theoretical, and technical concerns related to the implications of the human-technology interface for knowledge, individuality, and community. The program provides academic background for work in the media, communications, and any other field where media literacy is vital.
For more information on the structure of the program, see Program Requirements. For more information on the courses that Media Studies students can take, see Courses by Year and Courses by Discipline.
Learn More about the Media Studies Program from Recent Graduates
Study a Range of Disciplines
Includes courses that allow students to examine ethnographically and cross-culturally the cultural and social lives of media technologies as diverse as mp3 players, mobile phones, online games, telephony and telegraphy. In the third year ‘Virtual Worlds’ course, students will explore in detail online game environments that are experienced as being ‘worlds apart’, along with other playable media (Tabletop RPGs, wargames, visual novels).
The ways in which Canada has been documented in radio, documentary film (including the National Film Board) and other media.
Computer and Information Studies:
With an emphasis on computers and software, but including studies of cell phones, Wikis, Google, Facebook and social media.
Focus on the lived experience of digital media, experimenting with the new technology, the history of mass media and different theoretical perspectives to thinking about it; issues of global media; television studies (new course in preparation); experimental film (you make short films in Super-8 and 16mm film); and advanced studies of digital media and personal identity.
Gender and Women's Studies:
Mass-media images of gender and sexualities, including popular culture forms such as film, literature, sports, music, television, and other media, are critically examined to discern how these images change according to social and political conditions.
Ethics in a world of cyber-communication.
Courses address topics such as the structure of the Canadian mediascape, the relationship between media production and media reception, how journalism contributes to political communication, how political communication is mediated by class, gender, and other social conditions, and the implications of these processes for citizenship, political (dis)engagement, and communicative rights.