468: Film Studies
(Movies about Movies)
film viewing worksheet
MTWRF: 12:30 - 2:30 PM
|Professor: Mary AdamsOffice: Coulter
Office Hours: MTWRF 9-10 or by appointment
This class will focus on the films ABOUT films.
We will examine themes and stylistic conventions
and innovations associated with the "meta-movie."
- Attendance: Each
class day is equivalent to 2/3 of a week in
a regular semester. After three absences, you
will have missed the equivalent of two full
weeks of a regular semester, so your final grade
will be dropped one letter for each additional
absence. It doesn't matter if your absences
are excused or not, so please budget carefully
and don't ask me to excuse you for family emergencies,
court appearances, car accidents, illnesses,
or anything else. Extreme or extensive tardiness
could count as an absence. If you are absent
on the day you are assigned minutes or are making
a presentation, you should arrange for a substitute
to avoid losing credit for that assignment.
When will I mark you absent?
- When you aren't here, no matter what
your excuse is
- When you are significantly tardy at least
- When you leave before class is over
- When I ask you to leave because you are
- TARDINESS: DON'T BE LATE (especially on the
days on which we screen films in class)! See
the section on "viewing etiquette" (below).
- ACTIVE VIEWING and VIEWING ETIQUETTE:
A number of films will be screened in class.
You will not only need to be an active viewer,
devoting "unusual attention" to (and noting)
what you see, but you will need to be courteous
to your classmates and professor. Nothing mars
a viewing experience as much as unnecessary
distractions (for example, talking and whispering;
"heckling" and unwarranted comments; eating
noisily; walking around; entering or leaving
the classroom once a film has started). You
will lose participation points if you distract
others or don't pay close attention.
- Missed assignments. I hold you responsible
for assignments made in class whether you
are here or not. Ask classmates for the
assignments. I will never consider "I didn't
know" a valid excuse.
- Academic Dishonesty
is defined as: An intentional act of deception
in which a student seeks to claim credit for
the work or effort of another person or uses
unauthorized materials or fabricated information
in any academic work. Students are expected
to be honest and ethical in their academic work.
Academic dishonesty includes:
- CHEATING- use or attempted use of unauthorized
materials, information or study aids OR
an act of deceit by which a student attempts
to misrepresent mastery of academic effort
or information. This includes unauthorized
copying or collaboration on a test or assignment
or using prohibited materials and texts.
- FABRICATION- falsification or invention
of any information (including falsifying
research, inventing or exaggerating data
and listing incorrect or fictitious references.
- ASSISTING- helping another commit an act
of academic dishonesty. This includes paying
or bribing someone to acquire a test or
assignment, changing someone's grades or
academic records, or taking a test/doing
an assignment for someone else (or allowing
someone to do these things for you).
- TAMPERING- altering or interfering with
evaluation instruments and documents.
- PLAGIARISM- representing the words or
ideas of another person as one's own OR
presenting someone else's words, ideas,
artistry or data as one's own. This includes
copying another person's work (including
unpublished material) without appropriate
referencing, presenting someone else's opinions
and theories as one's own, or working jointly
on a project, then submitting it as one's
- Penalties for Academic dishonesty: Automatic
failure on the assignment and possible failure
for the course
Use this web page to check assignments, download
journal forms, follow links, and find academic resources.
Since it is updated regularly, always hit "reload"
after you access the site.
- Rental: Film Studies Reader (won't use
- Purchase: Theories of Cinema,
- Purchase: Movies about the Movies,
by Christopher Ames.
- Assignment breakdown:
- Viewing sheets (20%)
- Paper (30%). This paper will apply one
of the film theories to two of the films
we have watched.
- Midterm (10%). This short exam will be
about cinematic terminology. You’ll be asked
to explain various terms and give examples
of them from the films we’ve read.
- Film Presentation (20%). Each student
will do a 15-20 minute presentation—illustrated
with selections--on one film we did not
see in class (but which you were to view
outside of class). Your emphasis should
be on how cinematic effects help emphasize
- Final Exam (20%). This two-hour exam will
be a combination of short answer and essay.
I may ask you about terms, directors, titles,
quotes, etc. We’ll make up the study guide
Final examinations during class, on the
last day (August 6)
Does Participation Count? Participation
counts for 10% of your grade. In addition, those
who consistently prepare for class and participate
in discussion will get credit if they are on the
border between two grades. Those who aren't prepared
when I call on them or haven't done the reading
will receive 1/2 absence. Those who don't have
the book in class will be asked to leave and marked
- Because I will use your WCU email address
to contact you, make sure it is active. If you
use another account, forward your WCU email
to that account (consult the computer center
in basement of Forsythe with questions). I will
hold you responsible for information contained
in my emails.
- We will use the online syllabus. Check it
frequentlly for changes. Remember to always
hit reload. You must have access to the online
syllabus to do your journal entries.