Bachelor of Arts: Communication Studies - Film and Media Studies

This program is not accepting students due to new program option of: BA in Film and Media Arts and BA in Media, Art and Design.

University Requirements

General Education

UMKC Essentials is the university-wide curriculum that all undergraduate students will complete. The 30-credit hour program includes a First Year Experience course; three critical thinking courses in the areas of Arts & Humanities, Natural & Physical Sciences, and Social & Behavioral Sciences; a Culture and Diversity course; a Civic & Urban Engagement course; two courses in Written Composition and one course in Oral Communication; and a Math Pathway course. Transfer students entering UMKC will elect from the UMKC Essentials General Education Program or the Missouri Core 42 General Education Curriculum.  Academic advisors will meet with incoming transfer students to determine which option best serves the student’s educational needs. More information about General Education may be found here:

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.

Exit Examinations

Information on exit examinations 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 combining 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. 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. A student equipment checkout lab maintains an extensive inventory of production equipment providing the capabilities for professional cinematography, lighting and audio recording. Our facilities foster the ability to light, shoot and edit professionally, allowing the students to tell compelling stories that make an impact on audiences.

UMKC Essentials

First Semester Experience Course (GEFSE)3
Written Communication
ENGLISH 110Introduction to Academic Prose3
ENGLISH 225English II: Intermediate Academic Prose3
Oral Communication (Satisfied in program requirements below)
Math Pathway (choose one of the following):3
Mathematics For Liberal Arts
Statistical Reasoning
Precalculus Algebra
Any 200-level MATH or STAT course
ACT Math Sub-score of 28 or higher; or SAT Math Sub-score of 660 or higher
Critical Thinking in Arts & Humanities (GECERT-AH)3
Critical Thinking in Natural & Physical Sciences (GECRT-SC)3
Critical Thinking in Social & Behavioral Sciences (GECRT-SS)3
Culture & Diversity Course (GECDV)3
Civic & Urban Engagement Course (GECUE)3
Total Credits27

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
U.S. History Since 1877
Honors American Government
American Government
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.

School of Humanities and Social Sciences Degree Requirements

Writing Intensive Course (300-level or above; satisfied in major requirements below):0
Total Credits0

Major Requirements

Film and Media Studies Emphasis

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 Listening (satisfies Oral Communication requirement)3
COMM-ST 483Research Seminar In Communication Studies3
or FILM 471 Advanced Media Production
or COMM-ST 484 Internship
or FILM 498 Internship
Required Courses
One Writing Intensive Course3
FILM 230Introduction to Film Studies3
FILM 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
Concepts of the Hero in Ancient Literature and World Cinema
Rhetorical Theory And Criticism
German Film
Art of the Short Film
Topics in Film Genre
Fundamentals of Writing for the Media
Introduction to Screenwriting
Podcast and Audio Production
Intermediate Media Production
History Of The Film Industry
Narrative Production
Documentary Film History
Documentary Production
Topics in World Cinema
Topics in Sound & Cinema
Topics in Gender and Cinema
Special Topics in Film
Advanced Screenwriting
Advanced Screenwriting
Client-Based Media Production
Advanced Media Production
Directing Actors and Scenes
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 Electives54

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. Please see the tab above to view the major map for this program.

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.

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

UMKC’s PlanMyDegree ‘Plans’ degree planning tool enables students to develop a personalized semester by semester plan of study towards completion of degree requirements for student’s officially recorded (Office of Registration and Records) and “what if” exploratory plans of study. Update and edit your full plan to degree completion each term and confirm accuracy each semester with your Academic Advisor(s).