Overview

To obtain Honors in the Department of Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts students must have a GPA of 3.3 or higher and complete and defend an honors thesis.

 

BA Honors - Critical Studies

A written Honors Thesis is usually approximately 30-50 pages in length and must be rigorously conceived and demonstrate originality of thought and breadth of research.  A paper or project written for another class may not be submitted for the purpose of obtaining Honors without revision or expansion into a new Honors Thesis.

BA Honors - Production

To obtain BA Honors -- Production in Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts, a student must make a film and write a paper.  The film will be a rigorously conceived, researched, and executed creative moving image work.  The 15-20 page paper must be both scholarly and technical.  It must demonstrate considerable research, place the film in a personal, historical and aesthetic context, and include an analysis of the film’s form and content.  Contact Associate Professor Melinda Barlow to see a sample of this kind of essay.  Students who make a new film must enable Honors Committee members to view the film before the defense by giving each committee member a copy of the film on a submitted online link one week before the defense.  Students may be asked to screen examples from their films during the defense.

BFA Honors

To obtain BFA Honors in Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts, a student must make a film and write a paper.  The film will be a rigorously conceived, researched, and executed creative moving image work.  The 15-20 page paper must be both scholarly and technical.  It must demonstrate considerable research, place the film in a personal, historical and aesthetic context, and include an analysis of the film’s form and content.  Contact Associate Professor Melinda Barlow to see a sample of this kind of essay.  Students who make a new film must enable Honors Committee members to view the film before the defense by giving each committee member a copy of the film on a submitted online link one week before the defense.  Students may be asked to screen examples from their films during the defense.

 

Procedure for Attaining Honors in the Department of Cinema Studies and Moving Image Arts

Students wishing to pursue Honors in the Department of Cinema Studies and Moving Image Arts must begin the procedure no later than the semester before graduation. 

Select an Advisor

The student must select an Advisor from the Department of Cinema Studies and Moving Image Arts whose area of expertise best fits that student’s selected topic or project.  Advisors must be full-time, tenured or tenure-track faculty members or instructors in the Department.  Consult the Department of Cinema Studies and Moving Image Arts Advisors for a current list of qualifying faculty members.  A Critical Studies Advisor must supervise Critical Studies theses, and a Film Production Advisor must supervise filmmaking projects.

Consult the Arts and Sciences Honors Website

The semester before the student graduates, they must consult the Arts and Sciences Honors website to obtain the list of pertinent deadlines and the required form for the Honors prospectus, bibliography and timeline.  If questions remain go to the Honors Office in Norlin Library (room M400M) or call them at 303-492-6617.

Write your Prospectus

Each student must write a prospectus, a preliminary bibliography and timeline for research, writing and/or filmmaking and submit that prospectus to their Advisor for review.  Both the Advisor and the Honors Council Representative must approve and sign the prospectus.  The student should make a copy, and then submit the signed prospectus to the Honors Office. The prospectus must be submitted the semester before graduation; for May graduates it is due the preceding October; for December graduates, the preceding end of April or early May. It is the student’s responsibility to meet with their Advisor and meet the deadlines for drafts, rough-cuts and final revisions described in the timeline on the prospectus.  Rushed projects completed without supervision are not allowed.

Please note:  because an Honors thesis often transforms over the course of writing and filming, it is common to have to re-write the original prospectus for inclusion in the finished thesis.  Sample theses and prospectuses are available in the Honors Office for your perusal.

Select a Thesis Committee

Every Honors Thesis Committee must be composed of at least three faculty members, each a tenure-track or tenured professor or instructor:  an Advisor from the Department of Cinema Studies and Moving Image Arts, the Department’s Honors Council Representative, and a faculty member from another department. Ideally, the entire committee should be assembled early on in the Honors process but must be in place no later than three weeks before the oral defense of the thesis (the final step in the Honors process, approximately one hour in length). 
Committee members must be given at least one full week to read the finished thesis (and screen the film via online link if submitting for BA Honors - Production or BFA Honors - Production).

Registering for Honors Credit

Students may register for three Honors Independent Studies credits the semester they are working on either a BA or a BFA Honors Thesis.  The Honors Thesis Advisor serves as the supervisor of this Independent Study.

Latin Designation

In general, Honors are awarded according to the following GPA designations:  3.3-3.49 (cum laude), 3.5-3.79 (magna cum laude) and 3.8-4.0 (summa cum laude).  However, exceptional work may cause the Honors Thesis Committee to recommend a higher designation than is usually associated with the candidate’s GPA, while inferior work may cause the Committee to recommend an Honors designation lower than is associated with the candidate’s GPA.  In rare cases, the Committee may decide not to recommend Honors.  All designations recommended by the Honors Thesis Committee are subject to review by the CU Honors Council when it meets as a whole at the end of the semester.  Final designations are awarded at that time and sent to candidates via email and PIN number in the days following the meeting.  Honors designations are final and may not be appealed.

Multiple Majors/Degrees

Students pursuing two majors (BA and BFA in Cinema Studies and Moving Image Arts, or a major in Cinema Studies and Moving Image Arts and a major in another discipline) may choose to do an Honors Thesis for either or both majors.  Students seeking two distinct Honors designations must do a separate and different Honors Thesis for each degree, in different semesters, given the degree of commitment required by any single Honors thesis.

 

For more information, see the CU Arts and Sciences Honors website or call the Honors Program at 303-492-6617. Information on pursuing General Honors is also available through these two sources.

Associate Professor Melinda Barlow is the Honors Representative for the Department of Cinema Studies and Moving Image Arts. Her office is ATLAS 333, and she may be reached at melinda.barlow@colorado.edu