Media Studies Minor

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Media are the technological means through which societies are reflected, tested, challenged, and transformed. Cornell Media Studies is unique for its broad cultural scope and historical reach which fosters collaborative interaction among the disciplines, from Classics to Information Science. The Media Studies minor presents undergraduates with the opportunity for interdisciplinary engagement with diverse modes of communication, from the hieroglyph to the algorithm, encompassing the myriad technologies, forms, and practices by which information circulates amongst a now digitally-networked global population. An ancient concept that remains cutting edge in its applications, Media Studies identifies the transformation of every discipline by new formations of knowledge — digital, textual, visual, aural, tactile — and by corresponding requirements for the evaluation, interpretation, critique, and production of media. It is relevant to every college student.  

The undergraduate minor in Media Studies is open to students enrolled in any college at Cornell. Successful completion of the minor will be noted on students’ official transcripts.

The Media Studies minor consists of five courses, amounting to a minimum of 15 credits minimum. Two core classes, Thinking Media and Making Media, are required. Thinking Media is a class that rotates through departments, led by a primary instructor and featuring guest lectures from faculty across the University. A list of classes that meet the Making Media requirement can be found on the Media Studies website. While taking this class, students will also enroll in a one-credit colloquium, to be taken with other members of the Media Studies undergraduate cohort, which will meet once a week to share and reflect on their experiences and to discuss relevant concepts. In addition to these two classes, students will take three additional Media Studies courses at the 2000 level or above, passing with a grade of C or higher. All qualifying courses and their parent departments will be listed on the Media Studies website. Two of these courses must originate outside of the student’s major department.

Courses taken for the student’s major may count for the Media Studies minor. One class may be taken S/U, but Thinking Media and Making Media must be taken for letter grades.  

How to apply:

Students must declare their intent to minor by their penultimate semester. Application materials will be on the Media Studies website and students must meet with the Director of Undergraduate Studies to certify completion of the minor. They must also submit a short statement outlining their motivations for pursuing the minor, prospective pathway through it, and their future plans.

Director of Undergraduate, Spring 2021: Sabine Haenni (

Director of Undergraduate Studies Fall 2021, Spring 2022: Jeremy Braddock (