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B.A. Interdisciplinary Mass Communications, Biola University

Interdisciplinary Mass Communication Studies: 48 Units 

    36% of Units, 29% of Time (see Appendix B) (Roughly 12 months of full-time work)

Theoretical Media studies: 15 Units

  1. The Art of Story Telling, 3 Units, Peggy Medberry, MCOM 101, (A)
  2. Visual Aesthetics, 3 Units, Dean Yamada, MCOM 102, (A)
  3. History of Cinema, 3 Units, Dr. Mike Gonzales, MCOM 104, (A)
  4. Philosophy of Aesthetics, 3 Units, Mr. Matthew Kirkpatrick, PHIL 425 (Oxford), (A)
  5. Rhetoric of Media Studies, 3 Units, Dr. Todd Lewis, COMM 470 (COMM Capstone Class), (A)

Practical Media studies: 15 Units

  1. Intro to TV & Film Production, 3 Units, Dr. Gerald Fisher, MCOM103, (A)
  2. The Entertainment Business, 3 Units, John Schmidt, MCOM204, (A)
  3. Editing for Film & Television, 3 Units, Dean Yamada, MCOM315, (A)
  4. Mass Media Law & Ethics, 3 Units, James Hirsen, MCOM433, (A)
  5. Senior Media Project, 3 Units, Dr. Mike Gonzales, CNMA 456, (CNMA Capstone Class) (A)

Information Management studies: 6 Units

  1. Information Gathering and Database Analysis, 3 Units, Mark Landsbaum, MCOM305, (A)
  2. Methods of Communications Research, Dr. Gerald Fisher, 3 Units, MCOM 458, (A)

Theoretical Leadership & Management Studies: 12 Units

  1. Industrial Organizational Psychology; 3 Units, Dr. Wade McNair, PSYC 315, (A)
  2. Organizational Communication, 3 Units, Julie Little, COMM 387, (A)
  3. Theory of Politics, 6 Units, Seth Lazar, PHIL 435 (Oxford), (A-)

Philosophy of Western Civilization Honors Program: 71 Units 

(52% Units, 42% of Time (See Appendix B), roughly 17 months of full-time work)

  1. Greek Thought, 4 Units, YMDT 110 (A-)
  2. Old Testament Beginnings, 4 Units, YMDT 111 (A-)
  3. Wisdom Literature, 8 Units, YMDT 226 (A-)
  4. Greco-Roman Thought, 4 Units, YMDT 125, (A-)
  5. Pauline Epistles, 4 Units, YMDT 217, (B+)
  6. Medieval and Reformation Thought, 8 Units, YMDT 214, (B+)
  7. Church Fathers & Wisdom Literature, 8 Units, YMDT 124, (A-)
  8. Early Modern Thought, 8 Units, YMDT 220, (A)
  9. Nineteenth Century Thought, 4 Units, YMDT 325, (A)
  10. Shaping of the British Landscape, 3 Units, HIST 460 (Oxford), (A-)
  11. Humean Epistemology, 4 Units, Phil 425, (Oxford), (B+)
  12. 'America', 4 Units, YMDT 410, (A)
  13. Twentieth Century Thought, 4 Units, YMDT 465, (A)
  14. Torrey Berkeley Off-Campus Program, 4 Units, YMDT 492, (A)

Other Units, GE, & Pre-Requisites: 16 Units 

(12% Academics, 9% of Time (See Appendix B) (Roughly 4 Months)

  1. PE: 4 Units
    1. Volleyball, 1 Unit,
    2. Tennis, 1 Unit,
    3. Weight Training, 1 Unit,
    4. Mountain Biking, 1 Unit,
  2. Introduction to Psychology, 3 Units
  3. Nature of Mathematics, 3 Units, 
  4. Zoology, (Santa Barbara City College) 3 Units
  5. Environmental Biology, (Barstow Community College) 3 Units

Total Units: 135

Introduction to the 'Media Management for Non-Profits' Major

Josh Penman designed this interdisciplinary major in order to study abroad at Oxford, and to study all of the most interesting courses that Biola had to offer, regardless of which department they exist in. What follows is the logic he used when proposing this interdisciplinary major to the Cinema & Media Arts department. 

Josh Penman designed this interdisciplinary major under the Mass Comm. department to develop skills that are needed for Media Management for Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in the Middle East and North Africa.

The mix of courses is chosen based on his experience working with with NGOs, CBOs (Community-Based Organizations), United Nations departments, and governmental organizations such as the Sudan National AIDS Program (SNAP) and the Khartoum State Ministry of Health as producer of Sudan's first HIV/AIDS prevention media campaign in 2005-2006. 

As a producer, Josh found himself lacking in three areas: 

  1. Knowledge of practical and theoretical sides of the media production process.
  2. Information gathering and investigation.
  3. Organizational communication and efficiency. 
The Media Management for NGO's major addresses these weaknesses and offers a balanced focus between foundational theory and practical skills. 

Theoretical Media Production
For theoretical knowledge, the initial classes in the Film Production major at Biola University fit perfectly: The Art of StorytellingVisual Aesthetics, and History of Cinema introduce the theoretical side of media production, whilePhilosophy of Aesthetics at Oxford and Rhetoric of Media Studies (Biola's Comm. department capstone course) allow deeper study of media theory and philosophical bases.

Practical Media Production
Experience in script creation, pre-production, camera work, sound, and logistics/production management is solidified with Intro to TV & Film ProductionEditing for Film & TelevisionThe Entertainment BusinessMass Media Law & Ethics, and the Senior Media Project (Biola's Cinema & Media Arts department capstone course). 

Information Gathering & Investigation
Much of Josh's work in Sudan involved collecting information in a hostile political environments, so Information Gathering and Database Analysis for Investigative Reporting in the Journalism department improves investigative and internet research abilities and Methods of Communications Research, in the CNMA department familiarizes him with research tools and builds academic research skills.

Organizational Communication & Efficiency
From Josh's experience organizational efficiency depends on people and their communication with each other, so Biola's Communications and Psychology departments were the natural place to look for improvement: Industrial Organizational Psychology from Rosemead and Organizational Communication from the COMM department provide the tools and frameworks to improve communication and embed efficiency into an organization's structure.

Appendix B: 
Education Organized by Time

8/2006-5/2007    9/12 Months (-1 for interterm)

9/2007-6/2008    10/12 Months

9/2008-12/2008    3 Months (mid Sept to Mid Dec.)

2/2009-7/2009    6 Months

9/2009-1/2010    5 Months

Total (extrapolated from below) = 34/42 Months: (81%)


Time-span: 8/2006 to 2/2010: 3.5 years, i.e. 42 Months

1/2007          - 1 month    Vacation  2% of time

6/2007-8/2007 - 3 months    Department Supervisor (Thousand Pines) 7% of Time

7-2008-8/2008 - 2 months    Campus Safety & 

1, 2009, 8/2009 - 2 months    Vacation, Campus safety; 

Total: 8/42 Months (19%)