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Bachelor of Science in Digital Narrative and Interactive Design

The Digital Narrative and Interactive Design (DNID) major harnesses the narrative, world-building, and media studies strengths of the English department and the coding, software development, and human computer interface strengths of the School of Computing and Information. Students will learn how to build interactive narrative systems such as games, interactive literature, virtual reality environments and other interactive media experiences in a variety of fields. This major is operated jointly by the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences (DSAS) and the School of Computing and Information (SCI). It offers training that builds a solid foundation in English (Writing, Composition, Film and Media Studies, and Literature), Computer Science, and Information Science.

Required Courses

Gateway

  • ENGCMP 0425 Digital Humanity OR ENGLIT 0512 Narrative and Technology

Core Courses

Composition

  • ENGCMP 0610 Composing Digital Media
  • ENGLIT/ENGCMP/CMPINF Digital Narrative and Interactive Design (in development)

Programming Basis (one of the following)

  • CS 0010 Introduction to Computing for Systems Engineers
  • CS 0011 Introduction to Computing for Scientists
  • CS 0012 Introduction to Computing for the Humanities
  • INFSCI 0419 Python for Data management and Analytics

Intermediate Programming

  • CS 0401 Intermediate Programming Using Java OR INFSCI 0017 Fundamentals of Object-Oriented Programming

Interaction and Narrative (one of the following)

  • ENGLIT 0712 Introduction to Game Studies
  • ENGLIT 0512  Narrative and Technology*
  • ENGLIT 1001 Interactive Literature

*if not used as Gateway

Media Literacy (one of the following)

  • ENGFLM 0570 Introduction to New Media
  • ENGFLM 0355 Visual Literacy
  • ENGFLM 1680 Animation

Data Literacy

  • CS 0445 Data Structures
  • INFSCI 1022 Database Management Concepts and Applications

Electives

Select 6 courses from DSAS and 6 courses from SCI. Select courses from the list below, or choose to follow one of the available tracks below.

Capstone Sequence

Project 1 (one of the following)

  • ENGCMP 1910 Bridge Seminar
  • ENGLIT 1900 Project Seminar
  • ENGLIT 1901 Independent Study**

Project 2 (one of the following)

  • CMPINF Project Studio (In development)
  • CS 1902 Directed Study**

Electives/Available Tracks

Courses marked with an asterisk (*) may require prerequisite courses. Students should check with their advisors.

DSAS Courses

  • ENGWRT 0520 Introduction to Fiction Writing
  • ENGWRT 1403 Topics in Electronic Media
  • ENGWRT 1501 Topics Creative Writing Audio Storytelling
  • ENGCMP 0520 Integrating Writing and Design
  • ENGCMP 1112 Professional Uses of Social Media
  • ENGCMP 1130 Projects in Digital Composition
  • ENGCMP 1200 Advanced Composing Digital Media
  • ENGFLM 0355 Visual Literacy
  • ENGFLM 0570 Introduction to New Media
  • ENGFLM 0590 Filmmaking: Production and Criticism
  • ENGLIT/ENGFLM/ENGCMP 0712 Critical Making
  • ENGLIT 0520 Scan Culture
  • ENGLIT 0702 Introduction to Game Studies
  • ENGLIT/ENGFLM 0812 Media/Ecology
  • ENGLIT 1001 Interactive Literature
  • ENGLIT 1002 Game, Story, Play
  • ENGLIT 1355 Virtual Reality
  • ENGLIT 1377 Media Literacy
  • ENGLIT 1412 Secret Pittsburgh
  • GSWS 1210 Gender and the Digital

SCI Courses

  • CS 0590 Social Implications of Computing Technology
  • *CS 1501 Algorithm Implementation
  • CS 1520 Programming Languages for Web Applications
  • CS 1530 Software Engineering
  • *CS 1566 Intro to Computer Graphics
  • *CS 1567: Programming/Systems Design – Mobile Robot Platform
  • *CS 1571: Intro to AI
  • CS 1632 Software Quality Assurance
  • CS 1635 Interface Design Methodologies (Mobile Apps)
  • *CS 1666 Principles of Game Design and Implementation
  • *CS 1674 Intro to Computer Vision
  • *INFSCI 1014 Graphics
  • *INFSCI 1017 Implementation of Information Systems
  • *INFSCI 1024 Analysis of Information Systems
  • INFSCI 1044 Human Factors in System Design
  • *INFSCI 1059: Web Programming
  • INFSCI 1061 Game Implementation
  • INFSCI 1068 Geographic Information Systems
  • INFSCI 1052 User-Centered Design
  • INFSCI 1060 Game Design

The Critical Making track focuses on understanding code as creative and expressive of social relationships. The coursework addresses human interfaces within cultural and social contexts, particularly the historical and contemporary relationship between social interaction and platform design. Students will innovate new forms of human-machine interaction, apply or develop new tools to analyze cultural works (texts, images, moving images, etc.), express code in the creation and functioning of material objects or assemblages (haptic feedback systems, robotics, etc.), and analyze ways that gender, race, and other social categories and assumptions are “hard-coded” into both hardware and software.

English (choose two)

  • ENGLIT/ENGFLM/ENGCMP 0712 Critical Making
  • ENGCMP 0520 Integrating Writing and Design
  • ENGLIT/ENGFLM 0812 Media/Ecology
  • ENGCMP 1200 Advanced Composing Digital Media
  • ENGFLM 0590 Filmmaking: Production and Criticism
  • ENGLIT 0520 Scan Culture
  • ENGLIT 1355 Virtual Reality
  • ENGWRT 1501 Topics in Creative Writing – Audio Storytelling

SCI (choose two)

  • CS 1520 Programming Languages for Web Applications
  • *CS 1567 Programming/Systems Design – Mobile Robot Platform
  • *CS 1571 Intro to AI
  • INFSCI 1044 Human Factors in System Design
  • *INFSCI 1059 Web Programming

The Game Design track focuses on situating game production, advertising, and playing into current and historical social and cultural contexts. Coursework analyzes and evaluates the relationship between narrative and gameplay, and articulates critical facets of game design such as gameplay mechanics, balance, fairness, narrative, pacing, character, and aesthetics. Students will analyze both the narrative and design implementation challenges of game design and propose strategies for meeting those challenges, particularly in the case of social, medical, environmental, and educational problems (serious games).

English (choose two)

  • ENGCMP 1130 Projects in Digital Composition
  • ENGFLM 0570 Introduction to New Media
  • ENGLIT/ENGFLM 0812 Media/Ecology
  • ENGLIT 0702 Introduction to Game Studies
  • ENGLIT 1001 Interactive Literature
  • ENGLIT 1002 Game, Story, Play
  • ENGLIT 1355 Virtual Reality
  • ENGWRT 0520 Introduction to Fiction Writing

SCI (choose two)

  • *CS 1566 Intro to Computer Graphics
  • *CS 1666 Principles of Game Design and Implementation
  • *CS 1674 Intro to Computer Vision
  • *INFSCI 1014 Graphics
  • INFSCI 1044 Human Factors in System Design
  • INFSCI 1061 Game Implementation
  • INFSCI 1060 Game Design

The Online Media track skills will range from developing digital format narrative to communicate on behalf of organizations (for-profit or non-profit) and innovating online interactions to creating and critically analyzing content and data across the variety of specific digital formats. Students completing this track will be able to design distribution vectors for digital content, propose solutions to design and implementation challenges, and ultimately design media-rich web and mobile app content and implement their use.

English (choose two)

  • ENGCMP 0520 Integrating Writing and Design
  • ENGCMP 1112 Professional Uses of Social Media
  • ENGCMP 1130 Projects in Digital Composition
  • ENGFLM 0570 Introduction to New Media
  • ENGLIT/ENGFLM 0812 Media/Ecology
  • ENGLIT 1001 Interactive Literature
  • ENGLIT 1412 Secret Pittsburgh
  • ENGLIT 1377 Media Literacy
  • ENGWRT 1403 Topics in Electronic Media
  • ENGWRT 1501 Topics Creative Writing – Audio Storytelling
  • GSWS 1210 Gender and the Digital

SCI (choose two)

  • CS 0590 Social Implications of Computing Technology
  • CS 1520 Programming Languages for Web Applications
  • INFSCI 1044 Human Factors in System Design
  • INFSCI 1068 Geographic Information Systems
  • INFSCI 1052 User-Centered Design
  • INFSCI 1024 Analysis of Information Systems

Admissions

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