About The Bryan Singer Division of Critical Studies

Our program is engaged with the critical examination of mass media, popular culture, and the art, craft and industries of film, television, and interactive media. We explore their social, political, economic and aesthetic impact both at home and abroad. We study the language and pleasures of moving visual images and sounds and the ways they are used by various reception communities to understand themselves in relation to the rest of the world.

Our field assumes its objects of study and methods of inquiry continue to undergo change. We are committed to studying this historical process: how media images not only reflect our culture but also construct and reshape it, and how old power struggles get remapped onto new technologies and become partially transformed in the process.

Given this emphasis, our Critical Studies curriculum has been designed to accommodate change. Most of our requirements give students choices, and many of our courses have generic titles whose specific topics shift from year to year. Our students learn not merely a specific body of facts but how to formulate productive questions that will enable them to understand the changing mediascape and its broadest cultural implications. We foster a rigorous intellectual independence in our students, encouraging them to pursue their own research agenda with diligence and passion.

Degrees Offered
  • Bachelor of Arts
  • Master of Arts
  • Doctor of Philosophy
Contact Information

The Bryan Singer Division of Critical Studies
USC School of Cinematic Arts
Christine Acham, Program Coordinator
University Park, SCA 319
Los Angeles, CA 90089-2211
Phone: 213.740.3334
criticalstudies@cinema.usc.edu