The Catholic University of America

Video Production in the Media Lab

Media Lab

The Media Lab is a place where theory meets practice.

The production classes held in the Lab draw on concepts learned in previous Media Studies courses and challenge students to apply those concepts in thoughtful and creative ways. We believe that "hands-on" should not mean "brains off."

Whether they are engaged in taking pictures, animating special effects in a video sequence, or making short films, the Media Lab is where students are encouraged to reflect on the technical and rhetorical choices they make as they work.

Lab Resources

Located in G-1 O'Boyle Hall, the Media Lab hosts a classroom area, a digital editing lab, and an area for equipment check-in/check-out. Some classes meet in the Media Lab, while others visit on a regular basis for demonstrations, hands-on instruction, and discussion. The Media Lab also serves as a resource for students in Media Studies courses to work on production assignments. 

 Professor Ugarte gives students a camera demo in the media lab.

During the academic school year, the Lab keeps regular day, evening and weekend hours. Lab facilities are operated by our full-time Media Lab Director Abby Moser, an accomplished documentary videographer. Ms. Moser and experienced student lab monitors are available during Lab hours to provide assistance and offer extra instruction. 

A Note on Technology

Given the rapid development of new video and production technologies brought on by the digital revolution, a course that focuses solely on training students to use specific equipment and software is likely to be outdated before the semester is over. We believe that it is more useful for students interested in working in the field to concentrate on the principles of good composition, production, and editing rather than focus solely on the latest technology.

Newborn Child
Students practice falloff lighting

But we do not ignore the technology: The Media Lab has become an all-digital environment. Students taking production classes work with digital still and motion cameras and edit their projects on industry-standard Power Mac G-5 computers. Program courses introduce students to basic editing and compositing techniques in Adobe Photoshop, Premiere and AfterEffects, and FinalCut Pro.

Professional Opportunities

Many of our students find that related internships are the perfect complement to production classes. These positions allow students to develop further their creative, analytical, and technical skills, while at the same time giving them invaluable real-world experience.