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Core Courses

All core classes are taught in a cohort model, instead of a competitive, individualistic model. SocDoc emphasizes the group as a unit of cohesion and mutual assistance. Students carry out individual projects, but they are shaped and vetted all together.

The Social Documentation program has a required core curriculum around which students are expected to design their own course of study.

First Year:

SOCD 200: Approaches to Social Documentary (fall)
SOCD 201A: Introduction to Documentary Field Production and Editing (fall)
FILM 202: Pedagogy in Film and Digital Media (fall)

SOCD 203: Documentary Research Methods (winter)
SOCD 293: Multi-Platform Social Documentary Production: Immersive Media* (winter)

SOCD 201B: Advanced Documentary Field Production & Editing (spring)
SOCD 201C: Project Planning for the Social Documentary (spring)
SOCD202: Multiple Platform Social Documentary Production: Audio** (spring)


*Enrollment in SOCD 293 can be deferred until Year 2 but then in Year 1 SOCD 202 will be required in spring quarter.
**Enrollment in SOCD 202 can be deferred until Year 2 as long as the student has taken SOCD 293 in winter quarter of Year 1


Second Year:

SOCD 294A: Production, Analysis, Editing (fall)
[+At least one other course to reach 10 unit minimum]

SOCD 294B: Production, Analysis, Editing (winter)
SOCD 293: Studies & Practice for SocDoc, Filmmaking & New Media (winter)
Students can take either SOCD 293 in winter or SOCD 202 in spring. At least one is required. Or, add at least one other course to reach 10 unit minimum

SOCD 295: Project completion (spring)
SOCD 294C: Production, Analysis, Editing (spring)
Students can take either SOCD 293 in winter or SOCD 202 in spring. At least one is required


Quarterly course schedules are subject to change.  Enrollment in SOCD 202 and SOCD 293 is open to both first- and second-year students.  Enrollment is required in each academic year, and students may elect to enroll in both, as available. 

A total of 72 units are required to complete the M.F.A. Degree in Social Documentation, consisting of 55 units of required core courses and a minimum of 15 units of electives (not including individual studies and project completion). Electives may be taken any quarter. Master of Fine Arts students must be enrolled in at least 10 credits every quarter. The maximum credit load is 19, although this can be surpassed with special permission.

Students will work with their advisors in designing an individualized course of study that supplement the core curriculum with classes that support the student’s specific project. Specific media production classes will also be included in the course of study.

For more information and detailed descriptions of Social Documentation Core Courses, please refer to the UCSC General Catalog Social Documentation Section.

For a listing of courses offered during the current quarter, please refer to the UCSC Schedule of Classes.