MA Media Producing Degree Progression

Courses are seven weeks long, with the exception of Thesis II, which takes place over 14 weeks in the fall semester. All courses are completed online. 


15-Month Sequence of Courses

Fall Session I
Course           Credits                 
PROD-GT 2001 Producing Essentials   4 credits
Term credit total:  4 credits
Fall Session II
Courses                Credits                 
 PROD-GT 2002 Script Analysis                                                    4 credits
 PROD-GT 2003 Production Management       4 credits
Term credit total:  8 credits
Spring Session I
Course           Credits                 
  PROD-GT 2004 Entertainment Business Law                           4 credits
Term credit total:  4 credits
Spring Session II
Courses                Credits           
 PROD-GT 2005 Creative Fundraising and Deal Making              4 credits
 PROD-GT 2006 Post Production / Marketing and Distribution 4 credits
Term credit total:  8 credits
Summer Session I
Courses                Credits           
  Elective I                                                                                             2 credits
   Elective II                                                                                     2 credits
Term credit total:  4 credits
Summer Session II
Course           Credits                 
  PROD-GT 3000 Thesis I                                                                1 credit
Term credit total:  1 credit
Course           Credits                 
  PROD-GT 3001 Thesis II                                                                3 credits
Term credit total:  3 credit
Total Credits Required for MA Program: 32

Course Descriptions

Required Courses

Producing Essentials

PROD-GT 2001 | 4 credits

The role of the creative producer in the entertainment industry is integral to bringing a project to fruition. This course covers both the creative and physical production time-line and provides students with an understanding of the producer's role through a semester-long team-based pitch project, which culminates in written and verbal pitch presentations. Students are encouraged to work on a project that best suits their area of interest: feature film, documentary, episodic/streaming. The course focuses on the dynamics of producing, including producer skill sets, tasks and responsibilities necessary to effectively and efficiently develop a project

Script Analysis

PROD-GT 2002 | 4 credits

The goal of this class is to understand how a script works; it is designed to help students analyze a screenplay or television script. This will be achieved by exploring various forms of narrative structure and other important elements that contribute to the success of a film or television show, such as character development, sense of place, dialogue, use of a particular genre, pace, subtext, subplot, and tone. Using feature films and television shows, we will highlight these script elements rather than the integrated experience of the script, performance, directing, and editing elements of the film. We will study how the writer uses all the essential narrative building blocks: beats, moments, scenes, sequences, and acts to fabricate the carefully orchestrated illusion that is a screen story.  A guest lecture on ‘writing coverage’ will be part of this course. 

Production Management

PROD-GT 2003 | 4 credits

This course introduces professional production management.  Students will attain the information and practice of managing the making of a feature film or long form television show. Film and television production have many more requirements than simply securing a camera and actors and this course will explore those management elements from the breakdown of the script to completion of principal photography. We will examine: the structure of the crew and the collaborative responsibilities of crew members; the legal issues of permits; union negotiations; insurance, rights, clearances and permissions; Screen Actor guild and similar global agencies requirements; the management of the production including developing a production team, managing the production office, scheduling, budgeting, transportation, and the production’s responsibilities to cast and crew. Students will learn to use industry standard software, such as Movie Magic for scheduling and budgeting. This course will provide students with a framework through lectures, case studies, guest speakers, articles and selected chapters of relevant texts addressing critical problems facing the production manager.

Entertainment Business Law

PROD-GT 2004 | 4 credits

This course is an introduction to legal matters surrounding the production and distribution of film and television. Through the review of customary employment and financial agreements essential legal elements of film/TV production are discussed. Employing these elements, students are required to draft and negotiate a contract.

The digital environment situated copyright law at the center of major policy debates regarding the future of the information environment. This course will examine the legal response to information technologies and explore how copyright law shapes technological development, business models, social relations and political structures. The course will provide an in-depth exploration of some of the challenges to copyright law in the digital era, emphasizing regulatory options and policy considerations. Issues covered will include: digital challenges to the incentive’s paradigm, User-Generated-Content, regulation by code and anti-circumvention legislation, enforcement challenges and copyright liability of online intermediaries, private ordering and licensing schemes, open access initiatives, copyright law and freedom of expression.

Creative Fundraising and Deal Making

PROD-GT 2005 | 4 credits

This course is about raising money for creative endeavors in the film business. It will focus on both on the film world and the world of television. The course will cover both traditional and non-traditional financing and fundraising in the film world. At its core, this course is about developing a general understanding of fundraising and finance in the world of entertainment and refining the creative skills necessary to develop proposals that allow the student to one day realize a creative vision.

In the film world, rights need to be optioned, writers and actors hired, locations secured and production and post-production budgets put in place. When a film is completed, there is often a need for money to market the film at festivals in order to find that elusive distribution deal. The negotiation and structuring of these deals may be a humbling experience, fraught with compromises that affect the creative control over the film.

To be active in the worlds of high and low finance as they relate to the arts, producers need a knowledge of financing tools and structures. They also need a general knowledge of the current economics driving the entertainment business. They must also learn about how the tax and securities laws affect the business proposals they are developing. They must follow current trends in new technology. They must learn about foreign and domestic markets and try to spot new opportunities (and dangers) as they develop. This course is also about understanding technology and spotting new trends and new opportunities in the entertainment business.

Post Production / Marketing and Distribution

PROD-GT 2006 | 4 credits

How does a story get to market? What is the role of producers, publicists, agents, and managers? This course will focus on marketing and distribution strategies for films and television shows. It will explore past and current marketing components such as advertising, publicity, and sales promotions. The student will learn terminology and gain a basic knowledge of financial aspects of marketing. The student will explore the role of market research and target audience demographics, customer segmentation and competitive positioning, and learn how to bring content to market on both traditional and emerging platforms. The course will also cover the creative and electronic elements needed, as well as pitch development and presentation. In addition, students will learn about the different facets of post-production.  This course will cover the many steps involved in the workflow of finishing a film or television show.  The roles of editing, VFX, music, sound editorial and mixing, and color timing will be examined.  Editorial principles and dailies workflow will be highlighted as well. 

Thesis I

PROD-GT 3000 | 1 credit

Students will work with faculty and guest lecturers to identify and define a project they would be interested in producing.  An exploration of a series of case studies, practical examples presented by working producers and from feedback sessions from mock pitch sessions will help students identify a project and prepare to implement it.  Students move step-by-step through the development of their thesis project and follow a creative process where each element of the production is researched, planned, executed and documented.

Thesis II

PROD-GT 3001 | 3 credits

Students will prepare a prospectus for a film or television project (short- 40 minutes or less or a feature- 75 to 210 minutes) which will include the following key elements: story outline for a documentary or narrative project - the title and movie tagline plus the story outline;  production outline – e.g. location, cast, crew, locations, equipment required, wardrobe, hair/makeup, props, set dressing, set construction, special effects; set safety outline, days in production, post-production plan, and the budget. Or, a student can choose to produce a film with a minimum length of five minutes and include the following key elements: the film, the production book, the budget, and the lessons learned producing this work.

Elective Courses

Students will choose two of the following electives. 

Media Mavericks

PROD-GT 2100 | 2 credits

This course will focus on the artistic inventions of the experimental, moving image-maker. The course will explore the work of directors who have created their own cinematic language. Via the learning platform, students will stay in constant engaged online discussion with each student contributing their interpretation of the films screened in the class modules. In the context of this exploration, the course will focus on thematic threads such as the camera as a pen, the camera as a paintbrush, found footage editing, the cinematic poem, performance-based filmmaking, experimental documentary and the evolution of the underground and avant-garde film practices. 

Festivals and Markets

PROD-GT 2101 | 2 credits

How have film festivals changed in the post-war period as they aspire to strike a balance between the art, spectacle, politics, and business of cinema? Why do certain films and filmmakers achieve a heightened status in global cinema while others do not? This course takes a historical and contemporary look at domestic and international film festivals and their places in defining, validating, exhibiting, distributing, and producing films that reach global markets. The course examines the roles of all those involved in the film festival circuit, including but not limited to directors, curators, juries, audiences, and filmmakers. This course will analyze the mechanics of the oldest and largest international film festivals, such as Venice, Cannes, Locarno, Berlin, Rotterdam, and Toronto. The course will also look at the inner-workings of the largest independent film festivals in the United States - South by Southwest, the Sundance Film Festival and Tribeca. Students will also explore local film cultures and industries in the African, Asian, Middle Eastern, and Latin American markets.

New Technologies

PROD-GT 2102 | 2 credits

Each semester, the New Technologies course focuses on emerging technologies within the film and television industry. Currently, the course will focus on an introduction to Virtual Production composed of pre-recorded lecture modules, class discussions and group critiques, in-platform screenings, exercises, and a short final presentation. The course is designed to expose students to the fundamental principles of storytelling through Virtual Production including topics such as writing, directing, cinematography, art direction, and technical direction. The course will explore emerging techniques utilizing software and technology. In this new form of collaboration, students will explore how to tell a story and how they can apply what they learn to their own creative producing work. History and theory of Virtual Production will be touched upon to better understand how story through Virtual Production can successfully be expressed and most effectively reach its audience.


PROD-GT 2103 | 2 credits

Internships are an important part of a well-rounded education and can provide students with a perspective on what area of the entertainment industry they may pursue post-graduation. Internships can also provide students with vital professional experience and connections that they may draw upon throughout their career. Ideally, employers will also benefit from hiring interns who can bring a fresh perspective and talent to their organization.

Students registered for this course are enrolled in a media internship for academic credit. In these professional internships, the student's employer or supervisor evaluates the work of the student, and this evaluation, along with assignment, will be considered by the instructor for the final grade.

If you have questions about the MA Media Producing, please email