University of Southern California

USC School of Cinematic Arts

Interdivisional Media Arts + Practice (iMAP)


University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA 90007

United States


(213) 740-2311

Program Information

Degrees Offered:

PhD -- Media Arts + Practice

Format: Campus

Program Description:

New to the School of Cinematic Arts in 2007, the interdivisional program in Media Arts and Practice (iMAP) situates technology and creative production alongside the historical and theoretical contexts of critical media studies. This practice-oriented Ph.D. program provides students with both practical experience and theoretical knowledge as they work to define new modes of research and production in the 21st century. Media Arts and Practice was inspired by recent developments in media and technology that have altered the landscape of media production, analysis, distribution and display. Our goal is to support a new generation of scholar-practitioners who are able to combine historical and theoretical knowledge with creative and critical design skills. Students who complete a Ph.D. in Media Arts and Practice will be uniquely prepared to shape the future of media and scholarship, and to actively engage in the emerging cultural, technological and political dynamics of a global media ecology. Media Arts and Practice integrates the strengths of each program within the School of Cinematic Arts (Production, Critical Studies, Writing, Interactive Media, and Animation and Digital Arts) by offering students the opportunity to substantially design their own course of study. The core iMAP curriculum consists of three foundational courses in design, media and theory, plus a professionalization seminar devoted to exploring emerging movements in media technology, theory and practice. Students have unprecedented freedom to define and pursue their own specialization by drawing on the course offerings and world-renowned faculty across the School of Cinematic Arts and utilizing the resources of the school’s state-of-the-art digital production facilities. Students enter the Media Arts and Practice program with a variety of backgrounds in the arts, sciences and humanities. We seek students with a broad range of interests and abilities who are capable of working across traditional boundaries of scholarship, design, programming and media. Applicants should demonstrate their potential to succeed in a rigorous, hybrid, creative/critical environment and an interest in exploring new directions in scholarly research and creative practice.


Private not-for-profit

International Student Requirements:

Same as above, in addition to the TOEFL. Please visit the USC Graduate School International Student section for more information.

Facts & Figures

Financial Aid: No

International Financial Aid: No

# of Credits Required: 64 units

Classification: Doctoral/Research University—Extensive

Loans Offered: Financial Aid is available Federal Student Loans. Applicants may apply by completing the FAFSA and applying code 001328. Several scholarships also available.

Locale: Large City

Size & Settings: 0-999

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