Monday, August 24, 2015

Art 451 Problems in Digital Media - Syllabus

Art 451 Problems in Digital Media

Instructor: Joseph DeLappe
Fall 2011 – room CFA 207/208
Monday 1-3:30pm
Office: CFA 158
Office Hours: Mon/Wed 11:00am to 12:30pm


Tutorial on an independent basis arranged with tutor/advisor. Students exhibit work as part of course requirement. Maximum of 9 credits.
Prereq(s): ART 350

Course Description/Goals/Objectives:
This course is designed for the advanced Digital Media student to be taken towards the development of a group exhibition of either individually or collaboratively produced installation/performance projects.  Students in the course first develop a proposal for a semester long project, or projects that reflect their ongoing creative investigations into the creation of new media art while at the same time seeking to push themselves into new, innovative territory both technically and conceptually.  We will be developing a cohesive event at the end of the term at a location as yet to be determined.

Student Learning Outcomes:
•Students will gain an advanced level of knowledge and understanding of critical theory and practices in the areas of digital media art.
•Students will have a broad, experiential understanding of developing media based art works for public display.
•Students will learn to participate in the practice of being contemporary artists as they invent and expand their capabilities working with new technologies for creative production.
•Students will develop a proficiency in writing about their creative practice while learning best practices for basic website/blog development.
•Students will have evidence of their proficiency in the artwork produced. This proficiency will undergo a critical review through the group critique process, resulting in a more dynamic understanding artistic evaluation.

There are no formal assignments for this course.  The course is structured to allow the advanced Digital Media student the greatest latitude towards developing innovative projects that push both their technical and conceptual abilities in creating digital media based works. Students are required to present a comprehensive, public exhibition/display of their finished work at the end of the term.  Our bi-weekly critiques will serve as the formal consideration of “assignments” as assessed by the Professor.

Each student is REQUIRED to attend two approved lectures and two exhibitions or film screenings, that are regularly announced in class.  I will provide you with a list of approved lectures/screenings/exhibitions both on campus and off.  You are required to write a short, one page critical summary of the event and two questions to ask the speaker (extra credit will be given to those who actually ask their question at the event!).  There are several specific events oriented towards the digital media area that I will recommend you attend this semester - I will go over these in class.

Each student is required to develop a dedicated blog/journal updated weekly with documented progress and research towards completing their creative works.

We will be meeting every week to review progress, discuss ideas, visit potential locations, etc.   

Course Philosophy:
The Digital Media program exists as part of the larger Art Studio program for the Department of Art – all studio programs currently focus on the development of a contemporary approach to studio art practice and theory.  The program emphasizes an artistic, experimental and technical approach to learning to utilize media systems as tools for the facilitation of socially engaged art. The intent is to provide an intensive learning environment that considers new technologies as broadly flexible tools available to the contemporary artist.  The Digital Media program and this course emphasizes a creative model that is based on collaboration, dialogue and cooperative learning. 

This is a thoroughly hands-on course. You will learn in this class by doing – students will be given broad introductions to a variety of applications and devices as incorporated into their project assignments. Learning to use these complex graphics programs, online technologies and computer peripherals takes much dedication of time and a flexible attitude towards experiential practice and learning.  Learning to become proficient utilizing new technologies is accomplished through both individual and shared experience.  What you derive from this class in terms of technical learning will largely be defined by the amount of time you spend exploring and experimenting.

Finally, you will be challenged constantly to consider just what you are doing with these new tools to connect with our larger context. This course seeks to develop an alternative pedagogy for learning just what it means to be an artist in our contemporary time and place.

Students are graded according to the quality of their creative production and by their active participation in individual meetings with the faculty and group critiques.

•Grades for the critiques based on quality of work, evidence of time spent, attainment of project goals, articulation of your processes, responses to others work, etc.
•Grades for blog based on clarity of writing, quality of responses, number and quality of images, organization composition and quality of design.
•In class participation grades based upon attendance, notes required for medical excuses.
•Grades on reviews based on clarity of description of event, concise critique and analysis, original thoughts and appropriately intellectual responses.

Grading Rubric
•60% Studio Project(s) - 600 pts
•20% Participation/critiques, discussions. -    200 pts (15 weeks x 10 pts per week+ 50pts engagement)
•10% Written lecture and exhibition reviews. -  100 pts (4 reviews x 25 pts ea)
•10% Presentations. - 100 pts (2 presentations x 50 pts ea)

Total points: 1000
A = 1000-900
B = 899-800
C = 799-700
D = 699-600
F = 599-000
F = 0-83 Points

I will meet with each of you individually at the midterm to discuss your progress in the class and provide advising regarding the Digital Media program. You will receive written comments and a grade for each project.

The “+” and “-“ system will be used for grading.

Specific texts will be recommended on an individual basis.  

Lab Access:

Ours is a streamlined, small computer and media arts laboratory with a limited number of student workstations. In light of this situation and specifically in recognition of the fact that we cannot provide a workstation for each student during scheduled class times, we will be working from a lecture/lab model that requires that the majority of your work is to be completed outside of our scheduled lecture class periods.  Students should expect to complete their work during our lab/studio days and during after hours access to our lab. All student projects are to be completed during available lab hours in the Digital Media Studio, on your own computers or in the Knowledge Center’s Dynamic Media Lab.

The media lab of the Knowledge Center’s Dynamic Media Lab as well has capable staff on site to assist students.

You will be assigned a digital access code for after-hours access to the Digital Media Studio by the end of the second week of the term.

Policy on Attendance
There are no official absences from any university class. It is the personal responsibility of the student to consult with the professor regarding absence from class. In the event that a student misses a class because of an official university function or event or because of serious personal considerations, the Office of the Associate Vice President for Student Life Services may, at its discretion, send an explanation to the instructor involved or to the faculty in general. The instructor shall make the final determination on whether the missed work can be done at a time other than during the regularly scheduled class period.

Religious Holy Days:  It is the policy of NSHE to be sensitive to the religious obligations of its students. Any student missing classes, quizzes, examinations or any other class or lab work because of observance of religious holy days will, whenever possible, be given an opportunity during that semester to make up the missed work. The make-up work will apply to the religious holy day absence only. It shall be the responsibility of the student to notify the instructor in advance in writing, if the student intends to participate in a religious holy day which does not fall on state holidays or periods of class recess. This policy shall not apply in the event that administering the assignment at an alternate time would impose an undue hardship on the instructor or the institution which could not reasonably have been avoided.

Policy on Academic Dishonesty:
"Cheating, plagiarism or otherwise obtaining grades under false pretenses" constitute academic dishonesty according to the code of this university. Academic dishonesty will not be tolerated and penalties can include canceling a student's enrollment without a grade, giving an F for the course or for the assignment.
For more details, see the University General Catalog.

Policy on Disability:
If you have a disability and will be requiring assistance, please contact me or the Disability Resource Center (Thompson Building Suite 100) as soon as possible to arrange for appropriate accommodations.

Academic Success Services: 
Your student fees cover usage of the Math Center (784-4433 or, Tutoring Center (784-6801 or, and University Writing Center (784-6030 or These centers support your classroom learning; it is your responsibility to take advantage of their services. Keep in mind that seeking help outside of class is the sign of a responsible and successful student.

Statement on Audio and Video Recording:
“Surreptitious or covert video-taping of class or unauthorized audio recording of class is prohibited by law and by Board of Regents policy. This class may be videotaped or audio recorded only with the written permission of the instructor. In order to accommodate students with disabilities, some students may be given permission to record class lectures and discussions. Therefore, students should understand that their comments during class may be recorded.”