Documentary Research Methods

Schools of Public Engagement: Media

Liberal Arts
Undergraduate Course
Graduate Course
Degree Students
Documentary Research Methods
Fall 2024
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 (MED)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Modality: Online - Synchronous

Max Enrollment: 18

Add/Drop Deadline: September 9, 2024 (Monday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: November 17, 2024 (Sunday)

Seats Available: No

Status: Closed*

* Status information is updated every few 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: 2:54am EDT 7/16/2024

Meeting Info:
Days: Thursday
Times: 4:00pm - 5:50pm
Building: Online Course
Room: 999
Date Range: 8/29/2024 - 12/5/2024