Course Details

Title Understanding a Visual Language in Media
Field of Study Art, Media
Professor Changhee Chun (changhee.chun@uta.edu)
Type Academic course
Delivery Type Hybrid Track (2 weeks online + 2 weeks offline): Real-time
Credits 3
Contact hours 45
Schedule Morning
Course code ISS1004
Course number 18016

In this class, we will examine different visual languages using significant films and other media representative of important historic and contemporary ideas and movements. Screenings and readings guide discussions and analysis geared toward providing familiarity with a broad range of visual language and styles and connecting them to larger questions of culture production and artistic expression.

On completion of this course, students will understand basic film terminology and visual language and will be able to critically analyze the meaning of a visual sequence; students will understand film and other media as a whole, based on its basic components and cultural background. In addition, through comparing visual languages in various media, students will be able to examine and explore different production approaches. From this analysis, students will have opportunities to develop their own visual language as effective communicators. Finally, this course will provide students with the ability to break down sequences in films and other media and analyze them in a manner that extends beyond pure entertainment.


1.    To develop critical and analytical skills in viewing and evaluating films and other media.

2.    To examine and understand how visual works stimulate our emotions, influence our thoughts, and even guide our actions and beliefs.

3.    To perceive and understand the visual works and articulate this perception and understanding.

4.    To better understand another culture and production methods through the study of international film and media and comparison of different media.

5.    To explore and experiment with narrative construction both in visual strategies and shot-to-shot relations.

6.    To become well versed in conventional and alternative techniques of storytelling through readings, discussion and screenings of significant films and other media.

I’ll email you the course-pack entitled: Understanding a Visual Language in Film and other Media Study Guide
Lesson Plan
Class 1: Welcome to the Course (Orientation & Introduction) The Course Syllabus and Major Assignments
Class 2: Visual Language Overview/ Media Analysis Guide/ Media Narrative and Storytelling
Class 3: Visual Language: Composition & Lens Shots, Angles, Camera Movement
Class 4: Visual Language in the Classic Hollywood Film Screening and Discussion Casablanca (1942) Director: Michael Curtiz (USA)
Class 5: Visual Language: Visualization & Ways of Looking Shot Lists and Storyboards / Vectors Scene Analysis and Discussion: Casablanca Film Noir / Lights and Shadow
Class 6: Visual Language in Contemporary Asian Cinema Screening and Discussion Chungking Express (1994) Directed by Kar Wai Wong (Hong Kong)
Class 7: “Brick Wall” Assignment Presentation and Discussion Scene Analysis: Chungking Express
Class 8: Visual Language: Major Cinematic Techniques Overview Visual Language in European Cinema Screening and Discussion Nostalgia (1983) Director: Andrei Tarkovsky (Soviet Union)
Class 9: Visual Language: Editing Visual Rhythm / Cinematic Image Scene Analysis: Nostalgia Auteur Theory
Class 10: Visual Language in Nonfiction Screening and Discussion Honoring Home (2013) Visual Language: Documentary Scene Analysis: Honoring Home Visual Language Comparison: Fiction vs. Nonfiction
Class 11: Visual Language in Music Video Screening and Discussion Music Videos by Chris Cunningham, Spike Jonze, etc.
Class 12: Visual Language in Commercial and Game Screening and Discussion Commercials Visual Language and Sound Screening and Discussion
Class 13: Creating a Short Story through Still Pictures and Presentation 1
Class 14: Creating a Short Story through Still Pictures and Presentation 2
Class 15: Visual Language Comparison in Different Media Clip Screenings and Discussion Developing a Creative Visual Language The Course Review and Reflection, Final Exam
Last Updated April 15, 2021
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