Documentary Research Methods

Schools of Public Engagement: Media Studies

Liberal Arts

Undergraduate Course

Graduate Course

Degree Students

Documentary Research Methods

Fall 2021

Taught By: Amir Husak

Section: A

CRN: 1711

Credits: 3

This course is a non-production course in documentary research methodology. With a focus on the American documentary tradition, this course introduces the theoretical and practical foundations necessary for conducting research in the context of designing and developing documentary film content. We will examine award-winning documentary films as models, and will look at their process, their choices, and the emotional impact of these decisions in an attempt to understand the various stages of thought and of research that went in to creating the final film as a piece of art. The readings represent a diversity of approaches to qualitative research, and raise questions about what constitutes "good" research; and as such, what adds to our knowledge of the social world. We will ask such questions as: What is a good documentary subject? Why should we do documentary research, and how does doing it implicate us in a complex web of issues concerning the politics of representation and the social construction of meaning? Methodologies examined include print, photo and archival research; observation and direct cinema; interviews and oral histories; and participant observation; among others. Students will create a literature and film review on their own documentary subject, and will design, research, and write up their own documentary proposal and treatment.

Media Studies courses are open to all graduate students. Undergraduate Juniors and Seniors with permission from the instructor and BA/MA Media studies students should email mediastudiesadvising@newschool.edu for access.
Please note for the Fall 2021 semester, this course is running in a hybrid / online synchronous format. Please see day and time listed below.

College: Schools of Public Engagement (NS)

Department: Media Studies (NMDS)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Max Enrollment: 17

Add/Drop Deadline: September 13, 2021 (Monday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: November 21, 2021 (Sunday)

Seats Available: Yes

Status: Closed*

* Status information is updated every five minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 2:09pm 10/26/2021 EDT

Meeting Info:

Days: Thursday

Times: 4:00pm - 5:50pm

Building: 6 East 16th Street

Room: 902

Date Range: 9/2/2021 - 12/16/2021

Days: Thursday

Times: 4:00pm - 5:50pm

Building: Online Course

Room: 999

Date Range: 9/2/2021 - 12/16/2021