Emergent Media

Emergent Media


Get on the cutting edge of the media world

Our lives are saturated with media: computers, the internet, cell phones, apps, social media, and more. Everybody uses media these days. However, just because people carry around in their pocket a powerful communication tool doesn’t mean they know how to use it effectively.

Learn media literacy and practical skills. Learn how to connect with digital audiences and create valuable content. Learn how to be adaptable to an ever-changing and evolving media environment.

It begins here!

Today’s generation looks up to YouTubers and other social media influencers. Here, you gain the skills and education necessary to use media to reach audiences, whether in your personal life or professional life.

  • Students learn to create media from their very first course: this program is hands-on and applied through and through.
  • The program can be completed entirely online, which not only fits into students’ busy schedules, but it makes sense for the subject matter. We are teaching students who to communicate competently with digital media: it makes sense for them to be exposed to online learning.
  • The theoretical foundation of our program is media literacy: students learn how to think critically about the media they consume. Students leave our program with a thorough understanding of how the media ecosystem works so that they can use media to further their own goals, rather than being used by the media.
  • The job field is growing. Business and organizations of all sizes have become increasingly dependent on digital technology to reach their audiences and customers. This certificate is relevant for many careers beyond those in the traditional media industries.

Get ready to ...

  • Analyze and critique media using media literacy frameworks and theories
  • Design and develop websites
  • Create compelling visuals, brands, logos, and infographics
  • Record and edit podcasts using audio editing software
  • Distribute content and connect with audiences using current social media platforms
  • Write and blog according to industry standards using content management systems
  • Promote digital content by incorporating search engine optimization and social media marketing techniques
Emergent Media

Emergent Media Minor

For the minor, there are no enrollment requirements (GPA, credits earned, etc.). » Minor Requirements

Emergent Media Certificate

The certificate is open to all who meet any one of the following requirements:

  • Currently enrolled in a non-BU undergraduate program (minimum of 60 credits completed)
  • Formerly enrolled in a BU or other university undergraduate program (minimum of 60 credits completed)
  • Two years of relevant professional experience, as determined by department review of application

Current students aren't eligible for the certificate as they're already free to major in media and journalism with an emphasis in emergent media or minor in emergent media. After completion, certificate students can apply these credits toward a media and journalism degree at BU, if they so choose. » Certificate Requirements

Emergent media graduates from this program can get jobs in social media, public relations, radio, web design, and other media-intensive fields. But the real selling point is that emergent media skills are applicable to almost any business, non-profit or governmental organization. Every entity these days has a need for social media, a web presence, and other ways of connecting with their audience through digital channels. Even if a student doesn’t work full-time in a traditional media career, chances are some of their job duties will involve website and social media work.

Emergent Media Courses

Emergent Media Courses

MEDIA 420: Infographics

MEDIA 120: Introduction to Emergent Media
Explores history and foundational principles of emerging media in the Mass Communications field. This foundational level course develops undergraduate students' media and information literacy knowledge and skills, and prepares them for an expanding technological society. The course is required for students majoring in Mass Communications, is open to non-majors, and has no prerequisites. Three hours of lecture per week. This course earns one GEP toward Goal 1 Communication, one GEP toward Goal 2 Information Literacy and one GEP toward Goal 4 Cultures and Diversity in general education. May be offered in traditional and distance education formats. Prerequisites: None.

MEDIA 220: Introduction to Multimedia
Introduces students to the world of online multimedia from the perspective of mass communication. The primary emphasis of the course is the design and development of websites, implementing web design technologies to craft messages for digital audiences. Students learn how to code with HTML and CSS and employ contemporary design standards to their projects. This course is an elective for students majoring in Media and Journalism and can be used for the Emergent Media minor. This course earns one GEP toward Goal 1 - Communication, one GEP toward Goal 3 - Analytical and Quantitative Skills, and one GEP toward Goal 7 - Arts and Humanities. Prerequisites: None.

MEDIA 260: Social Media and Podcasting
Introduces students to the current use of social media and podcasting technologies, and explores the ways in which human-to-human communication interactions have been influenced or altered through the use of media. The course will examine development of social media, podcasting, and other digital media with a critical view of their effects on society. We will discuss the role of social media and podcasting in contemporary life by exploring how these emerging technologies affect news, entertainment, business and other industries. This course is an elective for students majoring in Media and Journalism, and can be used for the Emergent Media minor. This course earns one GEP toward Goal 1 - Communication, one GEP toward Goal 2 - Information Literacy, and one GEP toward Goal 6 - Social Sciences. Three hours lecture per week. May be offered in traditional and distance education formats. Prerequisites: None.

MEDIA 280: Introductions to Visual Communications
Introduces the basic concepts and approaches of visual communication including its history, social impact, and industry developments. Students will learn how to ethically use, create, and develop digital images for a variety of print and electronic media. Students create a digital portfolio that uses advanced storytelling techniques, showcases civic engagement and digital media competency. The resulting portfolio builds a bridge from student work to professional practice. This course earns one GEP toward Goal 1 Communication one GEP toward Goal 6 Social Sciences in general education and one GEP toward Goal 10 Citizenship in general education. Prerequisites: None. Three hours lecture per week.

MEDIA 320: Applied Multimedia
Provides an in-depth look at advanced web design and multimedia topics. This course will focus expansively on the design, development, implementation and evaluation of a large-scale multimedia project. Students will apply design principles in the areas of user experience design, audience analysis, mobile design, search engine optimization, and other current practices in the media industry. This course is an elective for students majoring in Media and Journalism, and can be used for the Emergent Media minor. Three hours lecture per week. Prerequisites: MEDIA.220.

MEDIA 420: Emergent Media Workshop: Specified Topic Area
Offers students specific instruction on current technical and practical aspects of technology in the field. The course is a workshop with class time divided between lecture and computer lab meetings. The overarching goal of this workshop is to critically discuss the theoretical and practical aspects of the latest Mass Communication technologies and aid students in creating media products. Students may enroll in the course more than once as topics are varied by the Media and Journalism Department. If a student wishes to take MASSCOMM 420 more than once, the Department Chair must approve. Prerequisites: MEDIA.220.

MEDIA 497: Internship
Studies a particular project, subject/topic or company arranged by the student, adviser and department chairperson. May be an on-campus or off-campus entity. Interns are expected to have completed the appropriate courses related to the internship prior to applying. Projects must be submitted in writing before the project is expected to begin and must be approved by the student's adviser and department chairperson. Special arrangements must be made for summer internships. Prerequisites: 60 credits and a GPA of 2.75 or with the permission of the department.