B.F.A. Digital Arts & Technologies

Academics

digital

The Bachelor of Fine Arts | Digital Arts & Technologies curriculum focuses on the artistic and creative application of digital technologies. Lower division core classes cover the fundamentals of programming and software applications such as the Adobe Creative Cloud Suite, which includes still image, motion, animation and sound design components.  Upper division core classes cover the principles and applications of web technologies (including HTML, CSS, and Javascript) and interactivity (including gaming, virtual reality, and installations). Senior level core classes center on advanced projects and developing a portfolio-centered internet presence.

Before acceptance into the B.F.A. program the student must complete the following five B.A. courses. They must be completed or in the process of completion before beginning the B.F.A. degree. For course descriptions see Courses section.

  • MART 101L Introduction to Media Arts – 3cr.
  • MART 102 Digital Technology in the Arts – 3cr.
  • MART 111A Intro to Photoshop – 3cr.
  • MART 112A Intro to Film Editing – 3cr
  • MART 120 Creative Coding I – 3cr.

Acceptance to the B.F.A. program will occur when the above courses have been completed OR are in the process of completion.

In order to apply for the B.F.A. in Media Arts, Digital Arts & Technologies Track, please speak with our adviser, Stephan Edwards (stephan.edwards@umontana.edu).

Incoming Freshman are encouraged to talk with Stephan Edwards immediately upon interest in the program, in addition to their general university advisers.

Curriculum Plan for BFA | DAT Undergraduates

Any student who is registered for any of the prerequisite courses may declare Media Arts as their major (B.A. track only). Once entering the B.F.A. program the student must then complete the following courses. The total credit number is 72 including the prerequisites, core B.F.A. courses and electives. GPA requirements continue through each assessment period with annual reviews occurring at the end of spring semester each year.

YEAR ONE (In the BA)
These classes may be taken in any order.

MART 101L Intro to Media Arts – 3 cr.
MART 102 Digital Technology in the Arts – 3 cr.
MART 111A Intro to Photoshop – 3 cr.
MART 112A Intro to Film Editing – 3 cr.
MART 120 Creative Coding I – 3 cr.

After the first year in the BA students in the BFA will follow this track:
YEAR TWO
Fall
MART 220 Creative Coding II – 3 cr.
MART 251 Digital Video Production Techniques – 3 cr.
MART 330 Principals of Sound Design – 3 cr.
MART 341 Intro to Web Design – 3 cr.

Spring
MART 255 Photoshop: Art & Design – 3 cr.
MART 256 Illustrator: Vector Layout – 3 cr.
MART 325 Intro to Animation – 3 cr.
MART 441 Web Technologies – 3 cr.

YEAR THREE
Fall
MART 210 Creation of Media Story – 3 cr.
MART 302 Intro to Motion Design – 3 cr.
MART 340 Principles of Interactive Media – 3 cr.
*MART 391 ST: Programming for Sound – 3 cr. (Elective)

Spring
MART 305 3D Animation I – 3 cr.
MART 440 Techniques of Interactive Media – 3 cr.

YEAR FOUR
Fall
MART 416 Production Studio I – 3 cr.
MART 445 Sound for Digital Media – 3 cr.
MART 450 Topics in Film/Media – 3 cr.
*MART 391 ST: Game Engines – 3 cr. (Elective)

Spring
MART 457 Production Studio II – 3 cr.
MART 499 Professional Portfolio – 3 cr.


Credit Breakdown
Prerequisites: 15 credits
BFA Core: 54 credits
Electives: 3 credits

Please see the Course Catalog for a complete listing of Media Arts courses.

101L Introduction to Media Arts
3 cr. Offered every term. Overview of the media arts and their interaction, integration and development in the creation of story beginning with early years of photography and movie-making through the introduction of radio and television up to the digital revolution.

102 Digital Technology in the Arts
3 cr. Offered every term. An introduction to the relationship between aesthetics and the emerging capacities of digital technology, the course is divided into 3 sections: Fundamentals, Artistic Application, and The Digital Age. It will cover the basic evolution of hardware, software, and the internet and will present a brief history of the pioneers who laid the groundwork for our contemporary digital art and technologies environment. It will also explore contemporary and emerging trends in the creative application of digital technology.

111A Fundamentals of Integrated Digital Art
3 cr. Offered every term. An introduction to design that focuses on artistic expression in a digital technology environment, the course is divided into 3 sections: Foundations, Techniques, and Applications. Using Adobe Photoshop, students will create individual work in both the still image and time based mediums while exploring a wide range of techniques.

112A Intro to Film Editing
3 cr. Offered every term. Study of the history, process and philosophy of narrative film/video editing and an introduction to Adobe Premier nonlinear editing software.

210 Creation of Media Story
3 cr. Offered autumn. Media Arts Majors only. An introduction to screenwriting and visualization for media story. Focus is on developing visual writing skills and effective utilization of critical story elements.

251 Digital Video Production Techniques
3 cr. Offered autumn. Media Arts Majors only. Intermediate study of digital video cameras, lighting, sound, and their use in specific production situations.

255 Photoshop: Art & Design
3 cr. Offered spring. Building on the fundamentals covered in the Intro to Photoshop course, Art & Design extends the visual aesthetic by taking an in depth look at the foundations, techniques and production process of Photoshop. Students will create individual projects that explore a wide range of techniques and principles. Prerequisite MART 111A.

256 Illustrator: Vector & Layout Design
3 cr. Offered spring. An introduction to the basic principles and techniques of still image design and manipulation using Adobe Illustrator, the industry leading application for creating vector-based content. This project-based course demystifies the powerful Illustrator toolsets and workspace and enables students to actualize their ideas by helping them to develop an efficient production process. No prerequisites required.

302 Intro to Motion Design
3 cr. Offered spring. Media Arts Majors only. This project-oriented course will introduce students to the basic technical and aesthetic components of digital motion design using the industry standard software programs Photoshop and After Effects.

305 3D Animation I
3 cr. Offered fall. Media Arts Majors only. This course is an introduction to fundamental concepts, principles, and practices of 3D digital modeling with Maya. Students will develop 3D modeling techniques, including production of geometric and organic objects. Through lectures, tutorials, in-class exercises and projects, students will be exposed to various techniques that may be used for innovative and artistic content such as filmic animation and compositing.

325 Fundamentals of Digital Animation
3 cr. Offered every term. Media Arts Majors only. Introduction to two-dimensional digital animation, focusing on character and motion design animation fundamentals including: cell animation (frame by frame), motion-tweening, working with key frames and motion paths, moving elements on a 2D stage, object choreography and text animation.

330 Principles of Sound Design
3 cr. Offered fall. Media Arts Majors only. Introduction to fundamental concepts, principles and practices of digital sound recording and editing in order to establish a common aesthetic and technical language necessary to develop quality audio design.

340 Principles of Interactive Media
3 cr. Offered spring. Media Arts Majors only. Overview of the fundamental techniques and principles of interactive media and exploration into it’s artistic application. Topics include Processing, Adobe Animate, and Unity.

341 Intro to Web Design
3 cr. Offered every term. Students will gain valuable skills in this introduction to the fundamentals of website structure, content design and navigation. Areas of focus will be directory structure, graphic design, navigation, audio/video integration and domain management. Students will create a simple CMS website.

416 Production Studio I
3 cr. Offered fall. Media Arts Majors only. This course provides students with the opportunity to work on a major production in their area of interest. This semester focuses on pre-production and can range from individual work to team collaborations.

440 Interactive Media Techniques
3 cr. Offered spring. Media Arts majors only. Building on the principles and techniques covered in MAR 340, this project-based class focuses on the artistic applications of interactive media in both a physical and internet environment.

441 Web Technologies
3 cr. Offered spring. Media Arts Majors only. Building on the principles and techniques covered in the Intro to Web Design course, this project-based class focuses on media integration, interactivity and user interface design.

445 Sound for Digital Media
3 cr. Offered spring. Media Arts majors only. Building on the principles and techniques covered in the Principles of Sound Design course, this project-based class focuses on the production and post-production aspects of sound design.

450 Topics in Film and Media Studies
3 cr. Offered spring. Media Arts Majors only. Research and exploration of contemporary film, video, digital art and design. Focus on areas of student research both in commercial and non-commercial venues and styles.

457 Production Studio II
3 cr. Offered spring. Media Arts Majors only. This course continues with the work of the production begun in MART 416 and focuses on the post-production stage.

499 Professional Portfolio
3 cr. Offered spring. Media Arts Majors only. This course provides students with the opportunity to design and present their professional portfolio and will cover the principles of branding, marketing and professional best practices.