Media is a crucial and pervasive dimension of contemporary culture. The development of formal understanding, historical knowledge, and critical literacy in media technologies and practices is central to a liberal arts education in the twenty-first century. Swarthmore’s Department of Film and Media Studies explores the history, theory, language, and social and cultural aspects of media forms including cinema, television, online video, digital games, and media art. Our classes introduce research and analytical methods; teach digital production skills and approaches; and encourage cross-cultural comparison of media aesthetics, audiences, and institutions. The hybrid curriculum blends critical studies with production, often within the same course. Students learn in a technology-rich environment, with access to excellent production equipment and technical and research support.
Each semester, the Department of Film and Media Studies offers five to six courses, many of which include evening screenings that are open to the campus community. Extensive public programming brings prominent guest filmmakers, scholars, and alumni to campus. Fall 2018 guests include filmmaker Richard Fung and screenwriter Michael Weithorn '78. The Department collaborates with Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges each spring on the TriCo Film Festival, which showcases the best of student work. Our alums have gone on to work in careers in independent film, the entertainment industry, news media, academia, and more.