Future Cinema

Course Site for Future Cinema 1 (and sometimes Future Cinema 2: Applied Theory) at York University, Canada

Evaluation + Assignments


In Future Cinema 2 I have often used a contract grading system rather than engage in traditional grading exercises. The Future Cinema 1 class opted for a contract grading system last year for the first time and it was a great success. You can find some of the rationale for my motivation here:
I am considering contract grading for this class and we will discuss this at the first meeting.

Here is the standard evaluation rubric for this class:

Participation: Ongoing evaluation, 20%
Being part of an intellectual community means attending class regularly and punctually, reading thoughtfully in advance and involving yourself in class discussions in a way that enables you and other students to learn. Participation also includes a pass/fail show and tell. As the name suggests – at the beginning of each class at least one of you is invited to share a work that resonates with the course – a film or game that you admire, an installation you saw, technology in the news that we should all see – discussing your own future cinema-related work is definitely encouraged! Also, in addition to being responsible for making a larger effort at least once, and committing to a day to do so, please feel free to share this kind information at any time!

Assignment 1: Short screens paper, 10%
Produce a quick conceptual model of a screen for future cinema– this should take you no more than a couple of days to prepare. You can produce a page of writing, a sketch, or a model OR pick an existing screen for cinema beyond a screen for single-channel cinema that you are interested in exploring creatively (Oculus Rift? Mobile phone?) . (How) does the screen itself affect audience? Would it support different kinds of narratives/experiments? (in other words, what would this new screen enable?). What kind of story does it inspire you to tell? Be prepared to discuss your work. Due week 2, September 20th

Assignment 2:  Research Proposal, 10%.
Students are required to submit a research proposal with bibliography for both traditional papers and creative projects – tell me about the context in which you are working and thinking and who is there isnpiting you, challenging you and thinking alongside you. This will be presented orally in class on Week 5, October 12th (pass/fail). Final written proposal due Week 6 October 18th.

Assignment 3:  Oral presentation of one of the assigned readings and written summary due at least two days before oral presentation, posted to class blog 20%.
These will be assigned the second week of classes. You will be required to summarize the major points or themes of the text, compare and contrast the viewpoints expressed in the piece with those of other authors and critically assess the article and its relationships to the broader themes, issues and practices considered in the course.  You are asked to prepare three to four questions from the reading to facilitate class discussion and extend the ideas expressed in the article with at least one future cinema example.  Students are evaluated on the quality of ideas and material presented and the ability to generate stimulating conversation. Consider a novel presentation form.

Each student must summarize the above in written form and distribute it to the class in advance of the discussion, via the website. The contents of the written summary should not be more than four double-spaced pages. You are encouraged to upload images and video, as appropriate. The oral presentation of your text should not exceed 15-20 minutes in length, followed by 20 minutes of discussion.

Assignment 5:  Paper or Research-Creation Project 40%.
Students undertake a research essay or an individual or collaborative research-creation project directly pertaining to the theoretical and creative work discussed in this class. An artist statement and bibliography must accompany creative work. Please note that while many kinds of creative projects might be acceptable, equipment and lab time and instruction in the use of specific technologies is not provided part of this studies course – so maquettes, paper prototypes, online multi-modal works etc. might be good choices (though of course if you have access to equipment or would like the challenge of learning new skills, go for it!). Final projects and paper topics must be approved by the professor. Due Week 12, December 6th – last day of class. Students should also be prepared to present their final papers or projects to the class.

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