University Requirements

General Education

The UMKC General Education Core is the university-wide curriculum that all undergraduate students will complete.  The 30-credit hour core curriculum includes three course types designated as Anchor, Discourse and Focus and is detailed in the General Education section of the catalog.

Constitution Course 

Every undergraduate student must take a course covering the United States Constitution and the Missouri State Constitution before graduation. Course options are included in the program requirements section below.

RooWriter Assessment

Candidates for all baccalaureate degrees must complete the online UMKC RooWriter Writing Assessment after they have passed Discourse 200 (or its equivalent) but before they have attained 90 credit hours. Incoming transfer students with more than 90 credit hours must complete the RooWriter by the end of their first semester of enrollment or within one semester after passing Discourse 200 (or its equivalent). Students who have not completed the RooWriter Writing Assessment within two semesters after passing Discourse 200 (or its equivalent) will be blocked from enrollment until they successfully complete the RooWriter. Additional information is available in the Undergraduate Academic Regulations and Information section of the catalog.

Exit Examinations

Information on exit examinations and/or major field exams is available in the Undergraduate Academic Regulations and Information section of the catalog.

Missouri Higher Education Civics Achievement Examination

In accordance with Missouri Senate Bill 807 (section 170.013.1), 'any student entering a public institution of higher education for the first time after July 2019 who is pursuing an associate's or bachelor's degree from such institution shall successfully pass an examination on the provisions and principles of American civics with a score of seventy percent or greater as a condition of graduation from such institution'.  To satisfy this requirement at UMKC, students access the exam through the Canvas site. This requirement will be listed in the degree audit system as, 'Take State Mandated Missouri Higher Education Civics Achievement Examination', and listed on the transcript as 'Missouri Civics Examination'.   

Student Learning Outcomes

Students graduating from this program will:

  • Assess films, film culture and film history using film theory.
  • Specify relationships between film form and meaning using close textual analysis.
  • Identify social, political and aesthetic elements of cinema
  • Research and formulate theoretical questions and synthesize original scholarship in appropriate written form.
  • * Construct short films in a variety of modes possibly such as narrative, documentary, animated and promotional. (*media production courses are encouraged but not required.)

Program Requirements

The Film and Media Studies emphasis provides an interdisciplinary study of film and media, including the history and theory of global cinema culture, critical media studies and extensive training in media production. Our courses emphasize critical thinking, creative exploration and skill development by combines the study of film history and theory with the art and practice of film-making. Students write, produce, direct and edit several narrative, documentary and experimental shorts while studying histories and theories of the moving image. Students work with video, animation, non-linear editing systems and audio production tools. Internships and extracurricular activities prepare students for creative success, professional careers and advanced graduate studies. The program is aligned with UMKC’s visual and performing arts mission.

The department has media classrooms and production spaces for student projects, that include a video production studio with multi-camera and “green-screen” capabilities, a sound recording facility with narration booth and radio console, and post production media labs outfitted with latest software, including Final Cut Pro, Avid, Pro Tools, Photoshop, After Effects, Flash, etc. These software packages provide the tools to not only edit sound and video, but to produce animation, motion graphics, and rich media content for the web. A student equipment checkout lab maintains an extensive inventory of production equipment ranging from traditional film cameras, such as Super 8 and 16mm; to the latest HD video cameras providing the capabilities for professional digital cinematography. Location lighting equipment includes tungsten, fluorescent & HMI instruments. Pro sound gear packages are also available to students including a wide variety of microphones, booms, mixers and digital recorders. Our facilities foster the ability to light, shoot and edit professionally, allowing the students to tell compelling stories that make an impact on audiences.

Program Specific Recommendations for UMKC General Education Core Coursework

Anchor I 13
Anchor II (ANCH 201 Recommended) 13
Anchor III 13
DISC 100Discourse I: Reasoning and Values (Speech and Writing)3
DISC 200Discourse II: Culture and Diversity (Writing and Speech)3
DISC 300Discourse III: Civic and Community Engagement (Speech and Writing)3
Focus A (Satisfied in program requirements below)
Focus B (Satisfied in program requirements below)
Focus C (May be satisfied by Constitution course requirement below)
Focus Elective 13
'Total credits' in this section indicates the number of General Education Core credit hours that are not met by the degree specific requirements outlined below.
Total Credits21

Constitution Course Requirement

Section 170.011.1 of the Missouri Revised Statutes, 2015, states that all candidates for a degree issued by a college or university in the state of Missouri must have “satisfactorily passed an examination on the provisions and principles of the Constitution of the United States and of the state of Missouri, and in American history and American institutions.” 

Courses at UMKC that satisfy this state requirement are:

Choose one of the following:3
The Supreme Court And The Criminal Process
U.S. History to 1877 (Focus C) 1
U.S. History Since 1877 (Focus C) 1
Honors American Government (Focus C) 1
American Government (Focus C) 1
Total Credits3

There are a few other ways this requirement can be satisfied for students transferring to UMKC:

  • Take an equivalent course from the list above at a regionally accredited institution.
  • Earn credit for one of the above courses through AP, IB, or CLEP.
  • Take a course that directly satisfies the Missouri Constitution Requirement at another Missouri institution.
  • Have a previous bachelors degree (or higher) from a regionally accredited institution.
  • Have an Associate of Arts degree from a regionally accredited institution.
  • Complete the 42 Hour Core at a Missouri institution and have it listed on the official transcript.

College of Arts & Sciences Degree Requirements

Students pursuing the bachelor of arts and bachelor of science degrees must complete a major. Students pursuing the bachelor of liberal arts degree must complete a minor. Additional details are available in the Student Services section of the catalog.

ALEKS Math Placement
Arts and Humanities Division of CAS or any UMKC Focus A course 16
Science and Math Division of CAS or any UMKC Focus B course6
Social and Behavioral Sciences Division of CAS or any UMKC Focus C course6
Writing Intensive Course (300-level or above; Satisfied in program requirements below)
Foreign Language (3rd Semester Level)9
MATH 110Precalculus Algebra (or any 200-level or above Math/Stat course) 23
or MATH 116 Mathematics For Liberal Arts
or MATH 120 Precalculus
Laboratory Science Experience1
Total Credits31

Major Requirements

Film and Media Studies Emphasis

In addition to the 6 credit hours of the department's core courses (COMM-ST 110, COMM-ST 483 or COMM-ST 471), the Film and Media Studies emphasis requires COMM-ST 230, COMM-ST 339 and 21 hours of Film and Media Studies electives for a total of 33 credit hours. Students are required to take one writing intensive course in any department.

Students must maintain a 2.0 GPA in their major courses. Only major courses with a grade of C- or higher will be accepted for credit in the major, and counted toward the major GPA. With prior permission, three hours of elective credit from another department may be accepted as Communication Studies elective credit. Students must complete a minimum of 18 credit hours within the department.

Students must successfully complete the major requirements below with at least 18 credit hours taken in the department at UMKC with 12 of those hours at the 300-level or above.

Department's Core Courses
COMM-ST 110Fundamentals Of Effective Speaking And Listening3
COMM-ST 483Research Seminar In Communication Studies3
or COMM-ST 471 Advanced Media Production
Required Courses
One Writing Intensive Course3
COMM-ST 230Introduction to Film Studies (Focus A)3
COMM-ST 339Introduction to Film Theory3
Film and Media Studies Electives 1
Select seven of the following:21
Film Adaptation
Ancient World in Cinema
Introduction to Film and Video Production
Mass Media, Culture And Society
Concepts of the Hero in Ancient Literature and World Cinema
Rhetorical Theory And Criticism
German Film (Focus A)
Art of the Short Film
Topics in Film Genre
Fundamentals Of Writing For The Media
Introduction to Screenwriting
Radio Production I
Intermediate Media Production
History Of The Film Industry
Narrative Production
Documentary Film History
Documentary Production
The World(s) Of Alfred Hitchcock
Topics in World Cinema
Topics in Sound & Cinema
Topics in Gender and Cinema
Advanced Screenwriting
Client-Based Media Production
Advanced Media Production
Directing Actors and Scenes
Media Law
Communication Studies Activities
Total Credits36

General Electives

Students must take elective credit hours to meet the minimum credit hour requirement for their degree, including at least 36 credit hours of coursework at the 300-level or above. The minimum required by the university is 120 credit hours, of which at least 30 credit hours must be taken at UMKC, but some degree programs require more.

General Electives29

Minimum GPA: 2.0

Total Credit Hours: 120

Tools for Planning and Fulfilling Academic Requirements

UMKC's Major Maps are detailed, semester by semester plans that lead a student to complete all degree requirements within four years.  Plans include benchmarks and critical courses by term that assist a student’s evaluation of progress and major “fit”.  In order to ensure that the appropriate courses are taken, students are encouraged to consult with the undergraduate advisor for this major.

UMKC’s Degree Audit System provides an individual evaluation of all degree requirements (General Education Core, Degree Specific, Major Specific, etc.) for student’s officially recorded (Office of Registration and Records) and “what if” plans of study.  This evaluation is used to certify all graduation requirements.

UMKC’s Transfer Guides provide detailed guidance on recommended transfer coursework, plans of study, transfer timelines, and transfer contact information. To ensure a seamless transfer experience, students are encouraged to work with both their community college advisor and a UMKC advisor when planning their coursework.