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Minor and International Programs

Minor in Cinematic Arts

The minor in cinematic arts combines an introduction to this exciting and influential field with a diversified set of classes in critical studies, production, screenwriting, the entertainment industry, animation, and interactive media. The curriculum is purposely flexible; students may choose to sample different areas in their upper division courses or emphasize a single primary interest, such as production.

To be eligible for the cinematic arts minor, a student must be in good academic standing and have a declared major. To declare the cinematic arts minor a student must submit a Change of Major/Minor form to Cinematic Arts Student Affairs, CTV G130.

Course Requirements for the Minor
A total of 20 units is required for the minor in cinematic arts, one 4-unit lower division course and 16 upper division units.

Lower Division Requirement Units
CTCS 190*Introduction to Cinema, or
CTCS 191Introduction to Television and Video4

*Gateway course

Upper Division Requirement units
8 units from the following:
CTAN 450abcAnimation Theory and Techniques2-2-2
CTAN 451History of Animation2
CTAN 462Visual Effects2
CTCS 303Japanese Anime2
CTCS 411Film, Television and Cultural Studies4
CTCS 412Gender, Sexuality and Media4
CTCS 464Film and/or Television Genres4
CTCS 466Theatrical Film Symposium4
CTCS 467Television Symposium4
CTCS 469Film and/or Television Style Analysis4
CTIN 309Introduction to Interactive Entertainment4
CTIN 482Designing Online Multiplayer Game Environments2
CTPR 327Motion Picture Camera3
CTPR 335Motion Picture Editing3
CTPR 385Colloquium: Motion Picture Production Techniques4
CTPR 409Practicum in Television Production2, 4
CTPR 460Film Business Procedures and Distribution2, 4
CTPR 461Television Station Management2
CTPR 484Advanced Multi-Camera Television Workshop4
CTWR 321Introduction to Television Writing2
CTWR 412Introduction to Screenwriting2

Plus 8 additional units of Cinematic Arts electives.

Grade Point Average Requirement
A minimum grade of C (2.0) in each course is required. A grade of C- (1.7) or lower does not fulfill a minor requirement.

Minor in Animation and Digital Arts

The minor in animation offers students an introduction to the theory and practice of animation, including its relationship to the history of art and cinema, creative writing and basic film production. It provides students with an opportunity to create both personal and collaborative work in a wide range of genres, from traditional character to contemporary experimental and computer animation. This includes painting, cel, stop motion, collage, mixed media, 2- and 3-D computer animation software and interactive digital media. Successful completion of a final project is required.

Most students will enter the minor in animation program in their sophomore year at USC.

A student enrolled on the undergraduate level at USC may apply to minor in animation if he or she is maintaining normal degree progress.

Animation minor applications are reviewed by a panel of faculty members, with admissions made for the fall semester only. A maximum of 12 students will be admitted per year.

Application Procedures
To be considered for admission to the minor in animation, the applicant is required to submit the following materials: (1) Cinematic Arts departmental application, (2) academic records including current USC transcripts, (3) personal statement, (4) two letters of recommendation, and (5) portfolio (prints, slides, CD, DVD, film and/or video). Applications and admission information can be obtained from the USC School of Cinematic Arts, Animation and Digital Arts Program Office, (213) 740-3986 or online at

Grade Point Average Requirement
A minimum grade of C (2.0) in each course is required. A grade of C- (1.7) or lower does not fulfill a minor requirement.

Course Requirements
The following courses are to be taken in a prescribed sequential order. Twenty-four units are required.

CTAN 436Writing for Animation2
CTAN 448Introduction to Film Graphics–Animation4
CTAN 450abcAnimation Theory and Techniques2-2-2
CTAN 451History of Animation2
CTAN 452Introduction to 3-D Computer Animation2, max 4
CTCS 190Introduction to Cinema4
CTPR 385Colloquium: Motion Picture Production Techniques4

Minor in Screenwriting

The minor in screenwriting is designed to train students in the creatively challenging field of writing for screen and television. Students learn to write feature length screenplays, teleplays in both comedy and drama, and explore specialized areas of their choosing.

Application Procedures
Students should apply after they have completed CTWR 412 and received a grade of “B” or better in the course. A signature of support from the CTWR 412 professor is required. Students are admitted to the minor program in the fall and spring semesters.

Applications and information can be obtained at the Writing Division office, SCA 335, (213) 740-3303 and online at

Course Requirements for the Minor
The minor in screenwriting is a specialized course of study for students who desire a solid foundation in the craft of screenwriting. A total of 16 units is required to complete the screenwriting minor, 8 units from four fundamental courses and 8 units of electives.

Fundamentals and Feature Development (8 units)*Units
CTWR 321Introduction to Television Writing2
CTWR 412Introduction to Screenwriting2
CTWR 415aAdvanced Writing2
CTWR 416Motion Picture Script Analysis 2

Additional Electives (8 units)*Units
CTWR 410LCharacter Development and Storytelling for Games4
CTWR 415bAdvanced Writing4
CTWR 417Script Coverage and Story Analysis 2
CTWR 421Writing the Hour-Long Dramatic Series 2
CTWR 430The Writer in American Cinema and Television2
CTWR 434Comedy Writing Genres2
CTWR 435Writing for Film and Television Genres2
CTWR 437Writing the Situation Comedy Pilot2, max 4
CTWR 439Writing the Original Dramatic Series Pilot4, max 8
CTWR 441Writing Workshop in Creativity and Imagination2
CTWR 453Advanced Feature Rewriting4
CTWR 459abEntertainment Industry Seminar2-2
CTWR 499Special Topics2

*As with the fundamentals classes, juniors or seniors with a 3.0 GPA in good standing may elect to take graduate writing electives, which include: CTWR 516, CTWR 553, CTWR 572, CTWR 574, CTWR 599.

Grade Point Averages
A minimum grade of C (2.0) in each course is required. A grade of C- (1.7) or lower does not fulfill a minor requirement.

Graduate Courses
Students may not apply more than 16 units of graduate level course work toward their university degree.

Minor in Digital Studies

The minor in digital studies explores the intersections of digital media across both professional and academic disciplines. Learning the dynamic potential of a broad array of tools and technologies, students create innovative projects, from photo essays to Web-based documentaries, from interactive videos to sophisticated Web sites, and from typography in motion to 3-D visualizations. For more information and course requirements see the Institute for Multimedia Literacy.

Minor in Cinema-Television for the Health Professions

This 24-unit minor is designed for students who plan to enter careers or professional programs in medicine after graduation and are interested in working with film and television producers to disseminate accurate health information to the public. See the Keck School of Medicine for requirements.

Minor in 2-D Art for Games

This interdisciplinary minor integrates three major disciplines (fine arts, computer science and interactive media) to develop the 2-D visual skills necessary to conceptualize and illustrate images for games. For more information, see Roski School of Fine Arts.

Minor in 3-D Art for Games

The focus of the 3-D Art for Games minor is a trans-disciplinary approach that incorporates the creative, technological and team-based communication skills necessary to develop 3-D art skills for video games. For more information, see Roski School of Fine Arts.

Minor in 3-D Animation

The 3-D animation minor merges theoretical concepts and practical skills, to prepare students for a career in their major field of work with incorporation of 3-D animation and interactive technologies. Through integration of three major disciplines (cinematic arts, fine arts and information technology), students gain a solid foundation in a wide range of important industry and academic skills. See the Information Technology Program for course requirements.

Minor in Video Game Design and Management

The video game design minor integrates theoretical concepts and practical skills to prepare students for a career in interactive entertainment, specifically the video game industry. Through integration of two major disciplines (cinematic arts and information technology), students will be exposed to a variety of design concepts related to creating video games. See the Information Technology Program for course requirements. For specific information on admission and application procedures, contact the School of Cinematic Arts at (213) 821‑2515 or the Information Technology Program at (213) 740-4542.

Minor in Performing Arts Studies

The minor in Performing Arts provides an interdisciplinary inquiry into the nature and aesthetics of the performing arts. It combines the disciplines of cinematic arts, dance, music and theatre. The minor is a unique course of study that looks at how the performing arts contribute to a culturally literate society. See School of Theatre for requirements.

Global Exchange Workshop

“Documenting the Global City: Los Angeles and Beijing,” is an intensive, six-week workshop in documentary filming that pairs graduate students from the USC School of Cinematic Arts and the Communication University of China (CUC) to make short documentaries on Los Angeles or Beijing as global cities. The program is held in Los Angeles or Beijing in alternate years, and in summer 2010 will be held on the USC campus. Participating students enroll in CTPR 515 Global Exchange Workshop (2 units).

With faculty guidance from both universities, the students must negotiate cultural differences both in front of and behind the camera. In the process, both students and faculty directly experience the other culture and learn how it defines globalism in general, sees its own city in global terms, combines theory and practice, and processes a new set of perceptions and lived experience.

Interested students should contact Professor Mark Harris of the division of Film and Video Production at (213) 740-3319, or at Airfare to China and lodging expenses in Beijing are provided for all students accepted into the course.