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The MFA in Documentary intends to provide aspiring documentary filmmakers with a demanding program that integrates knowledge of documentary history, styles and traditions, an affinity to research and development, varied approaches to storytelling and production, with the technological aspects that develop strong production values, effective post-production, and finally the ability to take creative work to its audiences.
|Program Requirements||Quarter Hours|
|Total hours required||64|
Students will be able to:
- Describe cinematic contentions utilized in the making of feature length and short documentary films.
- Assess the strengths and weakness of written non-fiction proposals to include visual approaches, as well as fundraising, marketing, exhibition, and distribution plans.
- Communicate a clear vision to a team of collaborators.
- Apply key concepts in areas of documentary media production, including: producing, directing, cinematography, sound, and editing.
- Critique creative work, synthesizing theory and practice.
- Analyze the ethical and moral decisions inherent in representing individuals, lifestyles, and cultures.
- Evaluate legal considerations regarding content and characters present in their work, whether domestically or abroad.
|DOC 405||NON-FICTION STORYTELLING (FORMERLY DC 469)||4|
|DOC 412||EDITING THE DOCUMENTARY (FORMERLY DC 451)||4|
|DOC 424||DOCUMENTARY PRODUCTION (FORMERLY DC 471)||4|
|DOC 426||DOCUMENTARY PRODUCING (FORMERLY DC 486)||4|
|DOC 452||DOCUMENTARY CINEMATOGRAPHY (FORMERLY DC 478)||4|
|DOC 460||INTERACTIVE DOCUMENTARY (FORMERLY DC 468) 1||4|
|DOC 472||DOCUMENTARY LAW AND ETHICS (FORMERLY DC 467)||2|
|DOC 482||THE PERSONAL DOCUMENTARY (FORMERLY DC 466)||4|
|DOC 484||ADVANCED DOCUMENTARY PRODUCTION (FORMERLY DC 473)||4|
|FILM 410||PRODUCTION WORKSHOP (FORMERLY DC 461)||4|
|FILM 450||CINEMATOGRAPHY (FORMERLY DC 475)||4|
|FILM 510||CINEMA THESIS I||4|
|FILM 511||CINEMA THESIS II (FORMERLY DC 566)||4|
|MCS 544||TOPICS IN DOCUMENTARY STUDIES||4|
|POST 400||EDITING (FORMERLY DC 420)||4|
|POST 432||PRODUCTION SOUND (FORMERLY DC 413)||4|
|POST 480||POST-PRODUCTION WORKSHOP (FORMERLY DC 482)||2|
A major elective can be taken instead of DOC 460.
Students will choose among the following:
|ART 489||VIDEO ART||4|
|DOC 496||ADVANCED TOPICS IN DOCUMENTARY (FORMERLY DC 474)||4|
|FILM 480||PROJECT BLUELIGHT (FORMERLY DC 480)||4|
|FILM 490||ADVANCED TOPICS IN CINEMA (FORMERLY DC 470)||4|
|FILM 493||TOPICS IN STUDY ABROAD (FORMERLY DC 496)||4|
|JOUR 504||MULTIMEDIA NEWS PRODUCTION||4|
|MCS 541||AUDIO DOCUMENTARY||4|
|SOC 417||ETHNOGRAPHIC DOCUMENTARY FILM PRODUCTION||4|
The most important form that program assessment will take is the MFA thesis project. This project is the culmination of the eight quarters of study and practice. We expect the thesis projects to find funding, screen at film festivals, create an impact in their respective communities, with their anticipated audiences, and find wide avenues of outreach and distribution. Specific requirements include:
- Documentary film under 30 minutes in length is required.
- Complete final proposal.
- Complete Rough Cut.
- Prepare for Public Screening after the thesis defense.
MFA Thesis Committee
Students will be assigned a faculty advisor upon acceptance into the MFA program. The advisor will monitor the student's work and progress at the end of each quarter during their first year. Students will form a thesis committee at the beginning of their second year. During this second and third year, the thesis committee will evaluate the student's work, making sure that each student is progressing at the pace with the quality required to earn the degree upon completion of their courses and thesis project. The MFA in Documentary allows students to nominate the chair of their thesis advisor committee in conjunction with the following rules:
- The committee must include three faculty advisors.
- One advisor must be assigned to the MFA Documentary Committee.
- Two advisors will be nominated by the student.
- Of the three advisors, at least two should be fulltime faculty members. One advisor may be an adjunct faculty member.
MFA Thesis Screening
A major component of the MFA degree is the public screening of the MFA thesis. It is the student's responsibility to organize, schedule, promote and publicize this event.
MFA Thesis Defense
A minimum of thirty days prior to the public screening, the student will schedule a thesis defense with his/her MFA Thesis Committee. At this defense the student's MFA Thesis Committee will discuss, evaluate, and critique the thesis and make a determination on the awarding of the MFA degree.
MFA Thesis Timeline
Students will have a maximum of five years from the first enrollment in the program to complete, defend, and screen their MFA Thesis. Time spent in the MS program will count toward this limit. Students may petition their MFA Thesis Committees for a one-time extension.
DOC 701 THESIS CONTINUATION
This zero-credit course is for students actively working to finish their thesis projects. A student's MFA Thesis Committee Chair may enroll a student in 701 a maximum of eight times. Enrolling in 701 requires students to declare goals for the quarter with regard to finishing their thesis. Students who do not meet these goals may not be eligible to enroll in another 701 until those goals are met.
Students in the MFA Documentary degree program must meet the following requirements:
- Complete a minimum of 64 graduate credit hours in the designated degree program.
- Complete all graduate courses and requirements listed in the designated degree program.
- Earn a grade of C- or better in a graduate courses of the designated degree program.
- Maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher.
- Satisfactorily complete the MFA thesis as determined by the student's MFA Advisor Committee.
- Students cannot count credit earned towards a previously awarded master's or MFA degree toward the completion of this MFA program.
For DePaul's policy on repeat graduate courses and a complete list of academic policies see the DePaul Graduate Handbook in the Course Catalog.