Requirements for the MA in Global Communications, Fashion Track


Core courses (20 credits)

Five mandatory core courses:

CM5001 Global Communications

This course introduces students to major theories and practices of communications research, particularly those dealing with the globalization of media and culture. Students learn a mixture of approaches: rhetorical, quantitative, ethnographic and textual. They learn how various disciplines—economics, political science, anthropology, sociology, and rhetoric—deal with these issues. They also study a variety of research methodologies, learn how to create research projects and develop thesis-writing skills.

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CM5011 Fashion Theory

Fashion Theory: (Un)dressing the Self: Dress & Identity Dress is representation and objectification of our identity. It enables and supports social roles and structures. It grants us individuality at the same time as confirming our group belongings. As the most visible form of consumption, the most pertinent type of non-verbal communication, dress fulfils a decisive role in the construction of social as well as individual identity, the reflexive production of self. This course examines dress and fashion as social and cultural phenomena. It will explore the ways in which different identity categories – social, individual, gender, class – are constructed through dress. Moreover, we will explore dress as a multi-sensory system in relation to the way we experience and construct our ‘selves’ and the world we live in – a fact often overlooked in our seemingly occularcentric culture. Focusing on the physical self, the physio-aesthetic effect of cloth/ing on our bodies will be considered, the symbiotic relationship between the moving body, dress, the skin, the senses, and the self. Through the readings of some of the key (fashion) theorists (e.g. Anzieu, Barnard, Barnett, Barthes, Davis, Eicher, Entwistle, Eco, Evans, Featherstone, Finkelstein, Flugel, Foucault, Goffman, Kaiser, König, Lacan, Laver, Lindstrom, Lipovetsky, Pallasmaa, Phelan, Roach-Higgins, Simmel, Stone, Veblen, Vinken, Wilson) we will investigate motivations in dress, the communicative properties of clothes and how we perform ourselves by way of dressing every day, the Western hierarchy of the senses, and the construction of the self as a visual and tactile process and the role of dress within it. In addition to textual and visual sources, this course will consider a series of films to explore dress as an embodied and situated practice, investigating the relevance of filmic representation for fashion-related research and analysis. In preparation of the written assessment, the course will include a workshop on visual analysis.

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CM5013 Fashion System

The course aims to equip students with a knowledge of the fashion cultures that contribute to continued evolution in fashion industry systems, including the characters, business models and other diverse influences that shape fashion. Using the international fashion calendar as a framework for study, the course will consider the role of fashion as an innovator, in business modeling, planning, communication, market research & analysis and creative entrepreneurialism as well as in the area of product and trend. Students will be encouraged to question how fashion has influenced other parts of the creative industries sector. The course will examine market segmentation and trend scouting in fashion, including an understanding of the influence of local trends on global products, (and vice versa) and the fashion industry's need to quantify trends. Paris has long been revered as the first fashion city, and retains its position as a vital “research centre” for retailers, brands and designers. Set within a maelstrom of contemporary fashion cultures that include universal blogs and market information overload, Paris offers students an excellent laboratory for a study of the fashion paradigm that will be utilized in this module. The course offers students an opportunity to examine the synchronicity of multimedia and global cultures with fashion (current forms such as blogs, branding campaigns and viral marketing as well as historic – movies, magazines, art). You are encouraged to develop an understanding of key drivers to the fashion industry machine, from sourcing and manufacturing to design, forecasting and retail. Primary research will form an important part of this course and students will be strongly encouraged to visit shows, trade fairs and stores within a structured line of investigation related to project briefs.

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CM5021 Paris Fashion And Design Template

This two-part course examines how and why Paris became the center of the contemporary fashion world. In part one, through reading, history and cultural theory and visiting certain key sites in Paris, students will develop an in-depth understanding of a city which is often considered to have been the template for modern urbanism – the ‘capital of the nineteenth century’, to use Walter Benjamin’s expression. In part two of the course, the emphasis shifts: the rise of the great couture houses becomes the focus. When did couture emerge, how it transformed in the twentieth century, what is the place of the couture today with the rise of ecological concern with it sustainable fashion? How did the couture house fit in the changing cultural environment in Paris, with wider aesthetic, social and moral concerns? In taking Paris Fashion Template, students will be cognizant with the city’s evolution from the seventeenth century onwards and have strong sense of the business and institutions which did so much in making the city a center what is now a global industry.

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CM5020 Magc Module

Topics for these intensive, practical modules change every semester.

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Track Electives (12 credits)

Choose three tack electives in fashion studies:

CM5002 Brands And Belief

This course examines the evolution of critical advertising and brand analysis with a particular emphasis on learning how people come to identify with and believe in brands. It includes an analysis of how brands work as systems for producing differences between themselves by creating imaginary possible worlds associated with brands. Students learn tools of semiotic and linguistic analysis in analyzing brands and how they relate to each other. Each student completes a communications audit of a brand examining all aspects of its communicative strategies from package design to employee behavior, clothing, architecture, and shop design. The course will also examine how branding now has extended beyond consumer brands to such areas as NGOs and politics (political parties as brands and politicians as brands).

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CM5005 Identity Formation In A Transnat'l World

This course examines the theories of self and identity formation in a globalized world where traditional techniques of identity formation coming from religions and schools and family are being supplemented or changed by techniques coming from other cultures and countries. Some of these ways of self-identification are influenced by consumerism, advertising and media. Some are influenced by traditional physical and moral training or globalized martial arts. Some are influenced by the implantation of psychological and therapeutic techniques from the West. Others are linked to the circulation of techniques of self-formation from yoga, tai chi, and kabala that have been taken out of their traditional contexts and globalized, mediatized and modernized. This course looks at people who seek to make and define themselves in various different local contexts. It will also examine the rise of religious fundamentalism, its appeal to youth, and how it uses media. The course also looks at the role of media, institutions and advertising consumer culture in this process.

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CM5017 Fashion Journalism

This course examines the many facets of communicating fashion to the outside world. We shall analyze the ways the various media: print, visual, and new, cover fashion. The role of PR in facilitating access to coverage will also be examined. Fashion journalism is undergoing a major shift with the advent of new technology. In order to understand this revolution, we shall consider the larger context in which fashion coverage is being played out. We shall look at newspapers, magazines, TV, movies and the web. How fashion can be presented: as spectacle, as image, as art, as craft, and as a commercial, industrial entity will be given consideration. An introduction to the major players and characters in the fashion world will be also part of this course.

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CM5033 Media, Stuff & Values

This course will first define essential aspects of the material and analyse different theoretical approaches to the study of material culture. We will then investigate how ‘stuff’of material culture (landscapes, objects, clothing, paraphernalia of the everyday environment) mediates contemporary identity in the context of a globalised culture and examine how the interplay between design, form, and function is represented by media as embodying cultural value. We will reflect on the nature of consumption, consider the politics of value of commodities, and explore how media are transformed into signs of global material culture.

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CM5037 The Museum As Medium

The origins of the contemporary "museum" can be seen in the rage for collecting unique and unusual objects which characterized the Renaissance and the age of exploration. Possession of such objects conveyed not only the power and wealth of the collector, but also displayed the collector's intellectual and aesthetic preferences to a selected audience, thus simultaneously confirming the identities of both collector and spectators as members of a privileged group. In the Age of Enlightenment and the Encyclopedia, the classification and organization of facts and objects - both intellectual property and material culture - gave birth to the concept of the modern 'museum'. This course investigates the construction and communication of national, cultural, and community identities and diverse definitions of heritage through the medium of the contemporary museum, where material culture is exhibited and organized to express verbal and visual narratives that evoke particular interpretations of history and values. Lectures and discussions will alternate with museum visits in which museum display and techniques of exhibition are identified and analysed. Issues of visitor participation, the museum experience, digital tools, websites and virtual visits will be considered. Several guest lectures by professionals will expand upon contemporary museum issues. Please note that an additional fee will be charged for this course.

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CM5060 Visual Culture, Theory & Communication

This course considers the physical and cultural conditions of vision and viewing within today’s globalized media environment through a transcultural survey of theories and contexts. It presents the act of seeing and the creation of visual objects as activities balancing beliefs in objectivity with ideas of free choice and subjectivity within the circulation of visual information. Consumer packaging, eco-tourism, plastic surgery, bodybuilding, theme park design, subway mapping and screen formatting are some of the subjects to be considered. Students will learn how visual theories extend across cultures, how visual practices shape our identity and environment in fundamental ways, and how vision functions in conjunction with the other senses.

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CM5063 Sustainable Development Practicum

How does communication work as local government bodies, civil-society actors and NGOs put together sustainable development initiatives? How can communication be made to work better? Cutting across disciplines, this practicum allows students to see individuals, groups and communities in collaboration (and sometimes conflict) in a South Asian context marked by the 2004 tsunami. Based in the international eco-community of Auroville (Tamil Nadu, south-east India), students will explore substantive areas including micro-credit, health care with special reference to HIV/Aids, socially responsible business and environmental management. On-site visits and team-work are central to the course, leading to the production of multi-media reports on the interface between communication, development and sustainability. This course has an extra course fee - to guage an estimated cost, the fee was approximately 1600 euros.

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CM5066 Advanced Branding Practicum

Brands, their creation, their identity and their management derive from a set of disciplines and principles that have been developed over the past 60 years. These disciplines are the architectural underpinnings for successful branding and they apply equally across categories of products and services and geographically across countries. The Branding Practicum will instruct students in these disciplines and principles and ask students to apply them to the creation of a new international brand in a category of their choice. Students will analyze a chosen category, create a new brand proposition for it, develop the branding identity for the new brand including name, logo, selling proposition and more. They will also create a global marketing strategy for the brand.

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CM5067 Advertising Practicum

The development of effective advertising is an intellectual and creative process that has evolved over the past century and includes the disciplines of research, targeting, strategy, strategy derived creative execution and evaluation. Today, the form and content of advertising is changing as the digital age opens new channels and types of messages. The Advertising Practicum will instruct students in the real world creation of effective advertising. Students will learn “the creation process” from start to finish, develop strategies and create advertising campaigns. Finally, they will compete to win an international brand’s advertising account by solving a strategic and creative challenge facing that brand just as it is done in the advertiser/ advertising agency industry worldwide. At the course’s end, students should have completed an advertising exercise that they can present to future employers as an aid to securing a job of their choice.

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CM5069 Internat'l Public Relations Practicum

Public relations (PR) is now an integral part of everyday life. From politicians to playgroups, it is an important tool that can mean the difference between success and failure of a project or product. Effective PR is a key requirement of most companies and organisations and this course is designed to provide students with the necessary background knowledge to allow them to begin a career in this area and/or to improve their general business communication skills. The course outlines different types, practices, and principles of public relations. It looks at key frameworks and developments in PR theory and practice, offering a straightforward combination of theory and case studies. In an increasingly global context, it is also imperative to take into account the international and intercultural perspectives of PR.

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CM5070 Media, Gender & Globalization

This class studies in detail the relations between media, gender and sexuality in a complex global environment. We will build on a theoretical foundation of gender in terms of embodiment, representation, consumption and institutions, and apply various methods of analysis to a range of global media. We will examine how gender enters debates around globalization, including anti-globalization movements, and how constructions of gender influence the mediation of global issues such as nationality, war and terrorism, and transnational flows of people, culture and capital.

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CM5080 Visual Design Practicum

This course is an intensive introduction to the basics of design principles for a variety of communications strategies. Through hands-on lab time with step-by-step instruction, students will learn the fundamentals of working with Adobe Creative Suite in order to create their own brand and its accompanying visuals. Presentations by professionals working in various fields of design and communications will familiarize students with their first-hand experience. Design literacy is essential to all areas of communication, whether in traditional print, digital media, websites or video. This class will focus specifically on the relationship between image and text, providing students with a solid foundation for any further study of graphics or web design they may wish to undertake in the future, as well as training students to interact effectively with professional designers.. The class will be comprised of lecturers on the fundamentals of design, presentations by and workshops with working professionals, and hands-on lab time to learn practical technical skills as applied to students’ individual branding projects. It suits students who plan to work in advertising, NGOs, branding, global advocacy or any other field of communications. Design literacy is an essential skill, indispensable for the effective communication of any organization’s message. Students will gain appreciation of graphic design; learning how typography color, composition, photography, illustration, etc. work together to produce effective conduits of information.

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Open Electives (8 credits)

  • Chosen from all MAGC offerings and selected Graduate School offerings


Thesis or internship (8 credits)

CM5095 Thesis

At the end of the course work students have the option of completing a thesis or an 8-credit Internship. In the last semester of their studies students may choose to complete a 14,000 to 20,000 word thesis (instead of an Internship). Additional paperwork available in the Office of the Registrar is MANDATORY for registration of the thesis.

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 or
CM5098 Internship

In the last semester of their studies students may choose to complete an Internship (instead of a Thesis) with a corporation, international organization, government body or NGO - requires a 50-60 page report and represents 3/6 months' work. Registration of the internship is subject to the MA Program Director's approval. Please contact the Internship Office for more information.

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Credit Model

  CREDITS PER COURSE NUMBER OF COURSES TOTAL CREDITS
Core Courses 4 5 20
Track Electives 4 3 12
Open Electives 4 2 8
Internship/Thesis 8 1 8
  48

 

Timeline

1ST SEMESTER 2ND SEMESTER 3RD SEMESTER
3 core courses 3 coure courses 2 elective courses
2 modules 2 modules Internship/Thesis
16 credits 16 credits 16 credits

 

* The length of the internship or thesis may vary, however—many students choose to take additional time for these components. 
** A special note:  U.S. Federal regulations state that AUP students receiving federal loans cannot do their Internship or write up their thesis in the United States. Students can only complete an Internship in the United States when it is not in pursuit of their degree.

See the tuition and costs for this program. 

Access the Fall 2014 Requirements for the MA in Global Communications, Development Fashion Track.