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Bachelor of Fine Arts in Computation Arts

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  • Objectives
    The Computation Arts programs facilitate a hybrid learning environment for the integration of fine arts and computer science. The core curriculum incorporates conceptual and technical aspects of dynamic imagery, sound and virtual dimension. Teaching emphasizes non‑traditional applications of digital technologies while also developing awareness of the cultural and political implications of new technologies in networked and information societies. Areas of interest in the program include interaction design, physical computing, immersive environments and experimental sound.
  • Academic Title
    Bachelor of Fine Arts in Computation Arts
  • Course description
    Specialization in Computation Arts — 60 credits
    Major in Computation Arts — 45 credits*
    Minor in Computation Arts — 24 credits

    *The Major in Computation Arts must be taken in combination with the Option in Computer Applications offered by the Department of Computer Science.

    Courses may include:

        * Web In Sites
        * Image/Sound/Dimension
        * Interactive Multimedia
        * Design Fundamentals
        * The Languages of Programming
        * New Media Theory
        * Networks and Navigation

    CART 251 Web In Sites (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: Enrolment in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. The Web is explored as a medium of expression for digital media concepts. A historical overview related to interdisciplinary research on technological developments in art, science, and industry is the theoretical reference base for the technical and conceptual challenges of working online.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 251 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 252 Image/Sound/Dimension (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: CART 251; enrolment in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. In this introductory lab, students pursue individual and collaborative projects in the three concentrations of digital media and their technical skill sets. Web and screen-based imaging, auditory works, 3D modelling and animation are produced in the context of digital applications and contemporary discourse in the fine arts.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 252 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 253 The Languages of Programming (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: CART 251 or written permission of the Department. The fundamentals of computer programming are introduced through exercises and studio projects. Students are exposed to scripting and programming in order to understand how they may be used to support creative digital work.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 253 or 353 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 254 Design Fundamentals (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: Enrolment in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. Key themes of visual communication are explored in the context of computation arts. This studio course considers colour and colour spaces, design elements (line, pattern, shape, texture), interpretation of space (surface, perspective, dimension, repetition, randomness), and conceptualization.

    CART 255 New Media Theory (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: Enrolment in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. A course based on lectures and discussion that surveys and examines key themes of design and art practice in the context of emerging technologies and cross-disciplinary inquiry.

    CART 261 Digital Dimensions I (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: Enrolment in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. In this studio course, students are introduced to the language, principles, and practices of 3D digital animation. Students are exposed to a wide range of traditional film animation techniques and learn the technical skills and conceptual strategies for 3D digital production.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for this topic under an FMAN 398 number may not take this course for credit.

    CART 262 Digital Dimensions II (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: CART 261; enrolment in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. This intermediate studio furthers conceptual and technical skills related to 3D digital animation. Through film analysis, readings, and lectures, students study film animation aesthetics, contemporary film practice, and advanced 3D animation techniques.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for this topic under an FMAN 398 number may not take this course for credit.

    CART 351 Networks and Navigation (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: CART 251, 252; 24 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. In this studio course, students develop interactive projects that take advantage of networked data, redefine online communities, and experiment with new communication structures. The perceptual and aesthetic aspects of digital media are addressed in relation to the technical skill sets required for navigating and understanding the possibilities and limits of networked environments.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 350 or 351 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 352 Synthetic Sound and Image (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: EAMT 203 previously or concurrently; 24 credits in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. Synthesis, synaesthesia and synthetic are the key discursive terms for research in this studio. Students are encouraged to explore the interconnectedness of image and sound through the medium of digital video. Concurrent with project ideation, the tools and techniques of image and audio processing will be advanced.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 350 or 352 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 354 Virtual Dimensions (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: CART 261, 262; 24 credits in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. This advanced studio builds upon 3D modelling for animation, gaming, and spatial environments. Concurrent with the development of technical skill sets, students develop thematic projects with consideration given to industry standards and cultural products for public or private enterprise.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 354 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 355 Topics in Kinetic Imagery (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 24 credits in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts. This course provides an opportunity for the study of special topics in kinetic imagery. Specific topics for this course, and prerequisites relevant in each case, will be stated in the Undergraduate Class Schedule.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 355 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 356 Topics in Abstract Soundscapes (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 24 credits in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts. This course provides an opportunity for the study of special topics in abstract soundscapes. Specific topics for this course, and prerequisites relevant in each case, will be stated in the Undergraduate Class Schedule.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 356 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 357 Topics in Digital Space (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 24 credits in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts. This course provides an opportunity for the study of special topics in digital and immersive space. Specific topics for this course, and prerequisites relevant in each case, will be stated in the Undergraduate Class Schedule.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 357 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 358 Topics in Senses and Perception (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 24 credits in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts. Research into sensory perception, touch, and noise is key to project proposals, methodology, and production. Interdisciplinary referencing and collaborative projects are emphasized. Specific topics for this course, and prerequisites relevant in each case, will be stated in the Undergraduate Class Schedule.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 358 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 360 Tangible Media and Physical Computing (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 24 credits in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. This course explores the concepts of tangible media and physical computation as well as related concepts of ubiquitous computing, wearable computing, and interaction design. The focus is on conceptual development, prototyping, and implementation of tangible media and physical computing artifacts from the perspectives of technical proficiency, functionality, aesthetics, and personal/social meaning.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 360 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 363 Advanced Languages of Programming (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: CART 253; 24 credits in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. An investigation of paradigms for programming, with concentration on topics of interest to digital art and design. Through lectures, readings, and projects, students explore topics including affective computing, artificial life, evolutionary computation, and mathematical programming.

    CART 398 Special Topics in Computation Arts (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: Enrolment in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. This course provides an opportunity for the study of specialized aspects and applications in computation arts. Specific topics for this course, and prerequisites relevant in each case, will be stated in the Undergraduate Class Schedule.

    CART 451 Interactive Multimedia (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: CART 351, 253*; 48 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. In this combination theory and studio course, students investigate diverse methods of interactive media design. They look at the history of interactive media in order to gain a critical understanding of its current state, and learn about the tools and techniques available for creative, effective work. Regular design briefs require that students experiment with and develop their own design style.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 450 or 451 may not take this course for credit.
    *Students registered in the Specialization.

    CART 452 Tri-Media Productions (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: CART 451; 48 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. Students pursue individualized projects from one or more of the three areas of concentration: visual Web/screen-based projects, auditory/sonic works, and three-dimensional/modelling/animation.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 450 or 452 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 453 The Digital Nomad (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 48 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. This studio course is based on mobility or nomadic considerations in new media productions. Transportable and flexible equipment configurations are developed to support on-site performance events, projection, and multimedia installations.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 453 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 454 Topics in Multimedia Theory (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 48 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. A seminar with a studio component, concentrating on current discourse in multimedia.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 454 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 455 Professional Internship I (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 48 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. Students work in the industry for a period of nine to thirteen weeks to allow them to gain experience in design firms and multimedia companies. Internships approved for credit must demonstrate an appropriate academic experience for the student.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 455 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 456 Professional Internship II (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 48 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts, or written permission of the Department. Students work in the industry for a period of nine to thirteen weeks to gain experience in design firms and multimedia companies. Internships approved for credit must demonstrate an appropriate academic experience for the student.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 456 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 457 Independent Study I (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 48 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. This option is for students choosing to undertake independent research under the supervision of a full-time faculty advisor. Research projects approved for credit must demonstrate an appropriate academic experience for the student.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 457 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 458 Independent Study II (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: 48 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. This option is for students choosing to undertake independent research under the supervision of a full-time faculty advisor. Research projects approved for credit must demonstrate an appropriate academic experience for the student.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 458 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 460 Bending Bits: Advanced Topics in Digital Media (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: CART 451 previously or concurrently; 48 credits in the Specialization or Major in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. An advanced studio course examining the ways computation can be deeply integrated into students’ creative practices. Projects look at how computation can be used to transform interactivity into a sematic strategy, input/output into a dialogue between the user, the work, and the world, and data processing into means of aesthetic exploration.
    NOTE: Students are expected to have solid skills in general-purpose programming before starting the class.
    NOTE: Students who have received credit for DFAR 460 may not take this course for credit.

    CART 498 Special Topics in Computation Arts (3 credits)
    Prerequisite: Enrolment in the Specialization, Major, or Minor in Computation Arts; or written permission of the Department. An advanced course which provides an opportunity for the study of specialized aspects and applications in digital fine arts. Specific topics for this course, and prerequisites relevant in each case, will be stated in the Undergraduate Class Schedule.

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