Jun 05, 2023  
[PRELIMINARY] Course Catalog 2023-2024 
[PRELIMINARY] Course Catalog 2023-2024

Cinema Studies

Geoffrey B. Pingree (Prof.), director

Grace An (Assoc. Prof. - joint appt. with French)
Jennifer Blaylock (Vstg. Asst. Prof., Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow)
Elizabeth U. (Rian) Brown-Orso (Prof.)
William Patrick Day (Prof. - joint appt. with English)
Kyle P. Hartzell (Vstg. Asst. Prof.)
Jay Johnson (Instr.)
Jeffrey S. Pence (Assoc. Prof. - joint appt. with English)
Joseph E. Rizzolo (Instr., Media Engineer)
Joshua D. Sperling (Asst. Prof. | Creative Media Dir. - A&S)
Leah J. Vonderheide (Vstg. Asst. Prof.)

arrow Visit the program web page for up-to-date information on program faculty, visiting lecturers, and special events.

The Cinema Studies Program at Oberlin College offers courses in filmmaking, screenwriting, and critical studies. Our program deals with cinema as an artistic practice and as a dynamic part of cultural and social history, placing cinema in the contexts of other media as well as viewing it through the perspective of a global network of the moving image.

As a program in a liberal arts college, we believe that studying cinema and making movies is an important way of learning about the world and how we live and act in it today. The moving image in all its forms and manifestations-from traditional theatrical movies and television to digital streaming platforms-represents, mediates, and shapes our understanding of the world, our own experience, and our experience of others. Studying and creating cinema enhances our vision-in every sense of the term-of our world.

arrow See information about Research, Internships, Study Away, and Experiential Learning (RISE).

arrow Explore Winter Term projects and opportunities.

Departmental Policies

Transfer of Credit for Content Taught by the Program

For approval of transfer credit toward meeting prerequisites for upper-level courses, students should consult with the program director, preferably with syllabi in hand.

Majors and Minors


Cinema studies courses at the 100- and 200-level cover critical studies topics and are open without prerequisites and available to students regardless of major.

What about 300- and 900-level courses?

First-Year Seminar Program

Although first-year seminars (FYSP) do not count toward the major, FYSP related to cinema studies are regularly taught by program faculty (e.g., NEED UP-TO-DATE EXAMPLES). These small, intensive courses provide one means of preparation for the study of cinema, and are invaluable to first-year students in the college as they develop skills in critical and creative thinking, reading, viewing, analysis, writing, and discussion.

Production Courses


Students in production courses are required to purchase their own external hard drives and A/V supplies, including memory cards, DVDs, and Blu-ray discs. Production courses require a lab fee. In addition, students must sign and abide by a Facilities Use Contract to gain access to cinema studies production facilities.