800 University WaySpartanburg, SC 293031-864-503-5000
Careers for English Majors / Finding Programs / Timeline for Preparing for Graduate School / The Application Portfolio / Some Graduate Programs
What is Cultural Studies? Cultural Studies is an emerging discipline that attempts to study the elements that come together to make a culture: gender, sexuality, race, history, religion, various forms of media, beliefs, etc. Scholars in this field study nontraditional texts, including television, media, popular culture, film, advertising, and the Internet. Much like English, Cultural and Film Studies are interdisciplinary fields that allow and encourage the use of methodologies or approaches from history, sociology, psychology, anthropology, communications, philosophy, and many other fields. Those who seek a degree in this field generally believe that the analysis and evaluation of culture is a liberatory process that can and will result in political and social change. Due to the political nature of the field, its definition is constantly evolving.
What is Film Studies? Film Studies is the study of film through theory, criticism, and individual interpretation. Film Studies is merely a specified branch of Cultural Studies, and has the same goals and methods.
Goals of Cultural Studies/Film Studies Graduate Programs
Finding the Right Cultural Studies/Film Studies Graduate Program for You
There are Cultural and Film Studies programs across the country that offer Masters of Arts/Sciences and Doctoral degrees. Graduate programs are much more personalized and specialized than undergraduate degrees. Students must consider several factors in selecting a graduate program that will fit your particular needs:
Consult the Timeline for Preparing for and Applying to Cultural Studies/Film Studies Graduate Programs
What should be in my portfolio?
Some Cultural Studies Graduate Programs
According to the 2007 edition of Peterson's Graduate Schools in the U.S., there are 18 universities that offer degrees in Cultural Studies. They are listed here along with the degrees offered and the tuition of the college:
The closest college to Spartanburg, SC that has a Cultural Studies program is George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. The university offers a Ph.D. in Cultural Studies that requires 48 hours of courses in theory, methods, topic, and a specialization culminating in a dissertation. Although they do not offer a Master's in Cultural Studies, they suggest enrolling in an affiliated field (English, History, Sociology, or Interdisciplinary Studies) simultaneous to enrolling in their Ph.D. program. They require a full portfolio (listed above) as well as GRE scores to be considered for admission. Foreign language competency is required for completion of the program. They have over 65 faculty members, and offer fellowships and assistantships to eligible students.
The college that is the furthest away from Spartanburg, SC is the University of California, Davis. UC-Davis offers a M.A. and Ph.D. in Cultural Studies, but generally accepts students who clearly state they are interested in both programs. They require a full portfolio (listed above), GRE scores, a Resume/CV, and a Personal History Statement that explains how your background reflects your desire to pursue an education at their university. They enroll only 10 students from 150 applications into the Cultural Studies program per year. The Ph.D. program requires 64 hours of graduate coursework, a foreign language requirement, a dissertation, and a minimum GPA of 3.0.
Some Film Studies (Theory/Criticism) Graduate Programs According to the 2007 edition of Peterson's Graduate Schools in the U.S., there are 12 universities that offer degrees in Film Studies:
The closest college to Spartanburg, SC that has a Film Studies program is Emory University in Atlanta, GA. Emory University offers a M.A. and Ph.D. certificate in Film Studies. That M.A. has 2 options for completion: 1) Take 8 courses, a comprehensive take home exam, and an oral defense of your exam answers; 2) Take 7 courses as well as a Thesis Research project to be approved by the student's advisor. The Ph.D. certificate program requires that a student major in a separate, but related, field (English, Women's Studies, Art History, etc) with a concentration in Film Studies. The subsequent dissertation utilizes both fields of study a chosen topic. They require a full portfolio (see above) and GRE scores for consideration.
The college that is the furthest away from Spartanburg, SC is San Francisco State University in California. The university offers a M.A. in Cinema Studies, and requires previous coursework in film theory and criticism for applicants to be considered for the program. They require a full portfolio as listed above, Resume, and thesis proposal; no GRE score is required. A total of 30 hours are necessary to complete the program. A M.F.A. in Cinema is also offered, but this is aimed at students who are interested in pursuing a career in film production or direction.
Compiled by Rachel McAllister and Dr. Celena E. Kusch, Fall 2007
Languages, Literature, and CompositionDr. Celena KuschDepartment Chair
Dr. Araceli Hernández-LarocheAssistant Department Chair
Student Literary Publications
Student Awards and Achievements
Student SupportLanguage LabPREFACE First-Year Reading ProgramWriting Center
Community OutreachReflections Foreign Language Teachers Conference
Department of Languages, Literature & Composition
800 University Way
Spartanburg, SC 29303
Faculty & Staff Directory
The University of South Carolina Upstate is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award baccalaureate and masters degrees. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia, 30033 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of USC Upstate. Comments or Complaints?