[Air-l] Graduate programs?

Rob Furr rsfurr at curie.uncg.edu
Mon Mar 11 09:03:37 PST 2002

I've been pretty quiet on the list for a while - I've been trying to pick 
up on what's acceptable and what's not, traffic-wise, but what with the the 
recent Imminent Death Of AIR-L Predicted(*) threads, I figure this question 
won't raise many hackles.

I'm currently working for a Dept. of Ed.-funded program - we're writing a 
program intended to do laboratory-based physics education online without 
need for a distance-learning-style Real Teacher on the other end - that'll 
be wrapping up in, oh, a year and a half. I'm currently the interface 
designer, industry researcher, features manager, chief bottle washer, and 
relief pitcher for the program, and I've been up to my armpits in media 
design issues for a long while now.  After the grant ends, I'm thinking of 
going back, taking advantage of that experience, and getting a Ph.D. in 
interactive media (or communications, focusing on interactive media, or new 
media, or whatever. I'm not picky about the name used.) There're two 
problems, though, each of which worries me somewhat:

1) I've got a MFA in film and video (concentration in computer animation, 
essentially.) It seems that having a MFA is more likely to hurt me than 
help me when it comes to applying for Ph.D. programs - I've already got a 
terminal degree, for one thing, and I'm not as up on the research and 
scholarship side of things for another. Is this correct? Is there anything 
I can do that would help in this regard?

2) I'm looking around for programs that focus on interactive media from a 
non-production standpoint - my current position is production enough for a 
looong while, and I'd like to step back and think about the whys and wheres 
and skip the hows for a bit. Anyone have any suggestions as to programs to 

Rob Furr


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