The media arts and visual communication concentration explores the complex world of visual media-making.

What mass media scholars sometimes call "the public conversation" has never been a more exciting and diverse cultural space. The media arts and visual communication major is a unique combination of media theory, critical analysis and cultural application combined with practical creative work focusing on digital media tools.

To make visual media that is effective, creative and ethical, critical analysis and cross-disciplinary connections are essential. Our program emphasizes informed and thoughtful development of visual media-making including new forms of creation, distribution and social engagement outside traditional structures, such as video blogs and digital storytelling. Students can also explore independent cinema, internet and interactive media, alternative political or social speech, media and performance art, documentary from a personal viewpoint, and storytelling/folklore.

Why Major in Media Arts and Visual Communication?

  • Creative studio classes include video production, Photoshop, animation, 3D modeling, graphic design, photography, sound recording and more.
  • Receive personal attention from faculty in small lab-media classes featuring Adobe Creative Cloud-based instruction.
  • Gain real-world experience through our solid internship program and other off-campus opportunities.
  • Develop your most compelling visual communication ideas with the best tools available in our state-of-the-art Macintosh Media Arts Lab.
  • Explore your gifts in a wide range of areas by employing the strong connections we have with other academic departments.
  • Dive deeper into your interests with opportunities for faculty/student collaboration on independent projects.

Major Requirements

• Communication major with Media Arts and Visual Communication concentration (BA/BS)


Making Connections

The study of communication is all about bringing people together. Many communication majors at Houghton reflect this by connecting their communication majors to many other areas of interest with a double major. Houghton students have paired their communication studies with majors in art, business, international development, intercultural studies, ministry, biology, psychology, English, writing, political science, Spanish, equestrian studies, music, and education. The strong collaboration we have with numerous other departments (art, business, writing, English, intercultural studies, international development, music) gives you the opportunity to explore your gifts in a range of areas while being supported by nurturing and caring faculty.

The Benn and Sally Forsyth Learning Commons

The Benn and Sally Forsyth Learning Commons is a creative, collaborative space open to all majors that houses our Macintosh Media Arts Lab. In addition to the computer workspaces in the classroom area of the Learning Commons, students also have access to individual media production workspaces for projects incorporating multiple digital technologies.

Experiential Learning Opportunities

Houghton media arts and visual communication students arrive at graduation with excellent preparation for the world of work. Through a combination of coursework and experience in theory and application, students will know not just how to do something but what to do to communicate effectively and why.