Program type:


On Campus
Est. time to complete:

2-3 years
Credit Hours:

Dissect the nuances in style and craft that create memorable, engaging media and gain critical insights for thriving in the industry.
Our M.A. in Media Industries & Critical-Cultural Studies program offers students small seminar classes, interdisciplinary approaches, and personal academic attention from renowned media scholars and practitioners.

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Why Earn a Media Industry and Critical Studies Master's?

Pursuing a graduate degree in Media Arts at the University of North Texas provides you many distinctive advantages, including:

  • Access to professional equipment, state-of-the-art facilities and a community of artists and scholars engaging with emergent, global media strategies
  • A curriculum that supplies a healthy combination of history, theory and industry studies, and a comprehensive education in the aesthetic, ethical and legal aspects of media production and consumption
  • Opportunities to present your work at festivals, conferences and other related events

The Critical-Cultural Studies side of the Master of Arts program is led by a small dynamic faculty who work closely with graduate students as they develop their degree plans, theses, or exams. Seminar courses provide students with unique opportunities to engage in critical discussion and cultural debate with faculty and peers.

The area values and encourages an interdisciplinary approach in course selection. As applicable, additional faculty are drawn from outside departments such as English, History, Journalism, Information Science, and Women's Studies, as well as from other local media studies programs to serve on students' theses projects.

The Industry Studies area is designed for students with interests in studying or working in media institutions including film, TV, video games, and digital and social media. Students learn about multiple aspects of media industries including: production cultures, management, distribution, global media, entrepreneurship, franchises and remakes, law and regulation, programming, transmedia storytelling, media economics, and audience research.

The Industry Studies program is led by a dynamic faculty who work closely with graduate students as they develop their degree plans. Our faculty members are internationally recognized scholars, seasoned media professionals and award-winning media producers.

Students are afforded options to create individualized degree plans that fit their academic interests and career goals.

The degree is designed with a focus on expanding students' career readiness and options in the media industry or Ph.D. program.

Marketable Skills
  • Understanding media economics and practices
  • Critical analysis of media industries and cultures
  • Media organization management
  • Research-based problem-solving
  • Presentation ability

Media Industry and Critical Studies Master's Highlights

We're an institutional member of the Broadcast Education Association, Texas Association of Broadcast Educators, and the University Film and Video Association. These organizations provide our faculty members with additional perspectives on current topics.
UNT Short Film Club offers many great ways to get involved, from attending meetings and weekly workshops, participating in our filmmaking challenges, and attending guest speaker lectures, to working on our SFC official & independent productions and television shows.
You can further hone your skills by working at our 100,000-watt radio station (KNTU-FM) or cable television station (ntTV).
Students' work has earned Lone Star Emmys, Telly Awards, and honors from the Texas Associated Press Broadcasters, the regional chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, and the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association.
Our students annually compete in international and national film festivals and student competitions. Their work has screened at the Dallas International Film Festival, the Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival in France, and the Student Academy Award Regional finalist screenings in Chicago.
Faculty members include internationally recognized scholars; media professionals with backgrounds in film production, news, broadcasting, and social media; and award-winning documentary and narrative filmmakers. Their books are used in university courses throughout the world.

What Can You Do With a Media Industry and Critical Studies Master's?

Media studies graduates typically enter careers in the media, cultural and creative industries. Areas of work include television and radio, film and video, digital media, computer games, journalism, writing and publishing, PR, marketing, and media practice.

Media Industry and Critical Studies Master's Courses You Could Take

Digital Media Studies (3 hrs)
Examination of emerging theoretical approaches to mass media. Application to digital media and traditional film and television of qualitative methodologies based on concepts including: participatory culture, community, mobility, network theory, labor economies and globalization.
Audience Research (3 hrs)
Advanced study of quantitative and qualitative audience research methodologies and theories.
Media Entrepreneurship (3 hrs)
Covers the essential information needed to start a media business. Topics include how to identify and market a new media enterprise, legal and tax issues encountered with starting a new business, and cost structures and sources of startup capital. A key outcome is the preparation of a business plan for a new media-related startup.
African-American Film (3 hrs)
Advanced study of the representation of African-American characters and concerns throughout the history of American film, drawing on current concepts from historiography, spectatorship, and critical race theory. Explores the cultural context of historical and contemporary images, as well as African-American participation within the American film industry.
Lesbian, Gay, and Queer Film and Video (3 hrs)
Advanced study of the representation of lesbian, gay and queer characters and concerns throughout the history of American film, drawing upon recent advances in historiography, spectatorship and queer theory. Explores the cultural context of historical and contemporary images, charting their change across relevant historical events such as World War II, the Sexual Revolution, the AIDS crisis and the mainstreaming of queer concerns in the 1990s.
Critical-Cultural Media Theory (3 hrs)
Introduces students to various theoretical frameworks used to study multiple media formats. Provides students with a historical development of media theory, as well as the vocabulary and concepts germane to different methodologies.

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