Course Requirements

Life Renewed, the interactive installation created for the Mount St. Helens Science & Learning Center at Coldwater Station by students in the fall 2015 Senior Seminar course

Life Renewed, the interactive installation created for the Mount St. Helens Science & Learning Center at Coldwater Station by students in the fall 2015 Senior Seminar course

The focus of this course is to professionalize students planning to work in digital technology or attend a graduate program in digital media or a related field. Thus, attention is given to providing students with a hands on experience with directing and participating in a large digital media project; teaching students how to engage in a critique of digital work; and helping students prepare requisite materials, such as a proposal, portfolio, resume, and writing sample, needed for their professional career. In brief, this course offers students a kind of literacy of digital media aimed at enhancing their success in the field.

Course Materials

  • Class Website:  http://dtc-wsuv.org/wp/497
  • This course requires no textbook; however, students are expected to prepare a Legacy Notebook for their Capstone Project, which will entail printing costs. Students are also expected to have access to an external drive to hold data. They may also find they need access to a Dropbox or some other shared data account.

Projects and Methodology

There are 15 different media objects that are associated with digital media.  You have, during the course of your experience in the program, produced and/or have been exposed to many of them.  These include videos, websites, animation, interactive installations, multimedia performances, video games, internet radio, internet television, virtual reality, human-computer interfaces, virtual environments, digital photography, electronic music, digital cinema, and apps.  A Capstone Project will be one of these.  To get a sense of the kind of projects students in the program have produced in the past, go to: http://dtc-wsuv.org/cmdc/senior_seminar/.

Generally in the Senior Seminar students are asked to create a media object for a particular organization. This opportunity provides you with working in and with teams, managing large projects, and interacting with clients and audiences.  Thus, this course focuses on methods and practices derived from multimedia design and pertinent activities and terminology.

This video presents the VR installation created for the Museum of the Oregon Territory’s Kaegi Pharmacy exhibit, by students in the Senior Seminar in fall 2016.

Assignments
All but one of these projects––the Self-Reflective Essay––are public projects. This means that you are expected to share your work with your teammates, the class at large, your mentor, and in the case of the Capstone Project and the Proposal/Project Research, your client(s). The list below includes all components of the class and designates who is expected to see your work either in draft and/or final format.

  • Capstone Project: You will be presented an opportunity or multiple opportunities for a project. You will work on a team creating a particular media object for an organization.  The point of this project is to show that you have attained the critical/creative thinking skills and technical “chops” needed for producing an effective media object. You will also be required to demonstrate that you can work on a team and collaborate collegially with others. Finally, you must put in no less than 150 hours into this project, logging your time for me in a weekly timesheet. You will share your work with your team, the class at large, and the client(s).
  • Proposal and/or Project Research: You will work in teams to develop a proposal or engage in project research that will be presented to the client.You will share your work with your team, the class at large, and the client(s).
  • Two Presentations: All students will give two formal 20-minute presentations in which teams discuss project information with members of the class, the client, and other interested parties (other students, alums, and visitors). The point of the presentations is to share the methods and processes by which you have developed the Capstone Project. You will share your work with your team, the class at large, and the client(s).
  • Self-Reflective Essay:  At the end of the course, you will produce a 10-15 page essay that reflects on your competency with the 10 CMDC Learning Goals, stated above.  This is a formal paper in which you discuss each goal in conjunction to the many projects, assignments, and readings undertaken in the program. The point of the reflection essay is to allow you to explain in detail what you have learned during the preparation of the major.  It also ensures that you have learned to communicate at the college level. Seen only by me, your professor.
  • Resume:  By the end of the course, you will have produced a formal resume that can be used for submission to a graduate program or for application for a job.  The point of this assignment is to prepare you for life beyond the program. You will share your work with your team, the class at large, and your mentor before sharing it with me, your professor.
  • Electronic Portfolio: Also at the end of the course, you will have produced an online portfolio that can be used for submission to graduate school or for application for a job. The point of this assignment is to prepare students for life beyond the program.You will share your work with your team, the class at large, and your mentor before sharing it with me, your professor.

Collegiality & Community Building
You will also be graded on Community Building since so much of what we do in our field involves working collaboratively with others in teams or in an ecosystem. Learning to be collegial, resolve differences amicably, function responsively are important skills that will help to ensure continued success in life. Because this course aims to prepare you for the world outside of academe, it requires that you gain this knowledge. Thus, in this course you are graded on the following: 1)  participating in a productive and collegial way in all critiques relating to your work as well as the work of those on your team and class,  2) attend all classes, tutorials, and workshops, and team meetings, 3) show respect and support to other students and staff in public venues online and in class. Know that a full 15% of your grade focuses on this area. I am the only person who assigns this grade, but note I will elicit information from various parties about your contributions and participation in the class.

Assessment

Work will be assessed for its professional quality. Other factors include being turned in on time, uniqueness, and, of course, content. Components that will be assessed are:

Capstone Project: 25%
Proposal:  10%
Presentations:  (2 @) 10%
Self-Reflective Essay: 10%
Resume: 10%
Portfolio: 10%
Collegiality & Community Building: 15% (3 @ 5% each)

Items turned in late will be penalized a letter grade per day (not class day but each day) late. Frankly, by the Senior Seminar, it is silly for students to think they can turn in work late unless there is an emergency.  And students know by this point what constitutes a viable emergency.  If we have to explain this information, students are not ready for the Senior Seminar.  Final grades will be calculated in this way:

94-100:  A
90-93:  A-
84-89:  B
80-83: B-
74-79:  C
70-73:  C-
>69:  F

A grade lower than a C in this course is unacceptable.  Students who are in danger of making below a C in the Senior Seminar will be advised to withdraw from the course until they are better able to show competency with the material.  Keep in mind that I do not write recommendation letters for students who perform at a C or below level in this course.

Attendance Policy

This class meets once a week; this means that one absence amounts to two class meetings in a normal schedule. For this reason, you should plan to attend all classes. Keep in mind that the definition of an excused absence follows within the guidelines of the university.  Absences due to a vacation, wedding, a family reunion, and a special “gig” do not count as excused absences.

To be honest, unexcused absences in the Senior Seminar are unacceptable.  Teams need all members’ input, and you need the experience in developing a large-scale media project in order to be accepted into a digital media-oriented graduate program or to land a digital media-oriented job.  Thus, you will see your grade drop one letter grade per two classes missed. If you miss more than three weeks in a row, for any reason, you will be asked to withdraw from the course and retake it when you are better able to participate.  You are also expected to be in class on the first and last class day.

Tardies count as missing a portion of a class.  Students coming to class late more than two class days will see their grades drop one letter grade per every two days of tardiness.

Keep in mind that one of the questions potential employers generally ask me when inquiring about hiring a DTC grad is if he or she completes work on time and shows up to class.  I cannot recommend you for a job if you have not conducted yourself responsibly in my class.

University Policies

  • Students with Disabilities: Reasonable accommodations are available for students with documented disabilities or chronic medical conditions. If you have a disability and need accommodations to fully participate in this class, please visit the Access Center website to follow published procedures to request accommodations:https://studentaffairs.vancouver.wsu.edu/access-center. Students may also either contact or visit the Access Center in-person to schedule an appointment with our Access Center Coordinator. Location: Classroom Building, Room 160; Phone: 360-546-9238; Email: van.access.center@wsu.edu. All disability related accommodations MUST be approved through the Access Center. Students with approved accommodations are strongly encouraged to visit with instructors early in the semester during office hours to discuss logistics.
  • WSU Academic Integrity Statement: Academic integrity is the cornerstone of higher education. As such, all members of the university community share responsibility for maintaining and promoting the principles of integrity in all activities, including academic integrity and honest scholarship. Academic integrity will be strongly enforced in this course. Students who violate WSU’s Academic Integrity Policy (identified in Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 504-26-010(3) and -404) will receive [insert academic sanction (e.g., fail the course, fail the assignment, etc.)], will not have the option to withdraw from the course pending an appeal, and will be reported to the Office of Student Conduct.
    Cheating includes, but is not limited to, plagiarism and unauthorized collaboration as defined in the Standards of Conduct for Students, WAC 504-26-010(3). You need to read and understand all of the definitions of cheating:  http://app.leg.wa.gov/WAC/default.aspx?cite=504-26-010. If you have any questions about what is and is not allowed in this course, you should ask course instructors before proceeding.  If you wish to appeal a faculty member’s decision relating to academic integrity, please use the form available at https://studentaffairs.vancouver.wsu.edu/student-affairs/student-conduct. If you have any questions about the process on the Vancouver campus, please call Helen Gregory at 360-546-9573.
  • Emergency Notification System: “WSU has made an emergency notification system available for faculty, students, and staff. Please register at myWSU with emergency contact information (cell, email, text, etc.). You may have been prompted to complete emergency contact information when registering for classes at myWSU. In the event of a building evacuation, a map at each classroom entrance shows the evacuation point for each building. Please refer to it. Finally, in case of class cancellation campus-wide, please check local media, the WSU Vancouver web page (https://www.vancouver.wsu.edu) and/or http://www.flashalert.net/. Individual class cancellations may be made at the discretion of the instructor.
  • Inclement weather policy: In the event that an adverse weather event (e.g., snow or ice) or natural hazard that poses a safety risk occurs, you should take personal safety into account when deciding whether you can travel safely to and from campus, taking local conditions into account. If campus remains open and your instructor decides to cancel the face-to-face meeting and substitute an alternative learning activity, you will be notified by your instructor via email or through Blackboard within a reasonable time after the decision to open or close campus has been made. Instructions regarding any alternative learning options or assignments will be communicated in a timely manner. If travel to campus is not possible due to adverse regional conditions, allowances to course attendance policy and scheduled assignments, including exams and quizzes, will be made. Students who attempt to gain advantage through abuse of this policy (e.g., by providing an instructor with false information) may be referred to the Office of Student Conduct for disciplinary action. If a student encounters an issue with an instructor, the student should first talk with the instructor. If the issue cannot be resolved, the student should follow the reporting violations of policies outlined on the student affairs website.

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