The interactive digital media major at Northwest is an interdisciplinary program involving an emphasis in computer science, graphic design or new media. The courses offer a cross-section of skills in design as well as written and visual communication. The major produces graduates who are proficient in art, photography, design, communication, computer programming and legal or ethical considerations as they relate to media.
Northwest offers computer labs equipped with open source software that prevents students from having to purchase additional software.
100% of students graduating with a degree in interactive digital media continue their education or find employment within six months after graduation. Below is a list of job titles related to this major:
*Based on self-reported data.
Knacktive combines six disciplines (computer science, English, graphic design, marketing, mass communications and public relations) into a one-semester interactive and collaborative course. The student-led teams conduct market research, analyze data, write creative strategies, and developed an integrated, digital marketing communication campaign and promotional materials for a real-world client.
At the end of each course, the team makes a formal presentation or client pitch in an attempt to convince the client to use their project. This experience aligns with the digital marketing and advertising agencies competing for clients.
The following organizations have been clients of Knacktive:
2011 – Cincinnati-based LasikPlus Vision
2012 – Science City, located in Kansas City at the Union Station
2013 – Tri-State Ford
2014 – Horace Mann Laboratory School
2015 – DecisionFx, located in Kansas City
To ensure Northwest is performing at the highest level of education, the professional advisory team, a group of 40 expert employers, evaluates the curriculum and discusses the up-and-coming techniques and opportunities for faculty and students alike. Students are allotted an hour to meet and network with the employers.
The School of Computer Science and Information Systems’ “Road Show” group consists of six to eight students who prepare and present computing materials to students in local K-12 schools, connect with teachers, support efforts to incorporate computing into the curriculum and recruit students.
Teacher nights at Horace Mann Laboratory School provide Northwest students with opportunities present to parents and teachers about new technology tools.
Study Abroad is an opportunity for students to apply hands-on international experience to their academic development. Faculty members provide short-term study programs that prepare students before, during and after the program. Two types of study abroad programs are available: faculty-led and traditional study abroad.
The traditional program may be a semester, summer or year-long program and is taught by Northwest’s international partner institutions.
Although internships are not required in the interactive digital media major, they are highly encouraged to gain real-world experiences.
Computer Science Programming Concentration
This is an interdisciplinary major in conjunction with the Department of Fine and Performing Arts, the School of Computer Science and Information Systems, and the School of Communication and Mass Media. Three concentrations are available for this major: Computer Science Programming (Computer Science and Information Systems), New Media (Communication and Mass Media), and Visual Imaging (Fine and Performing Arts).
The Northwest Core (48-52 hours)
Must include the following: CSIS 44101 Foundations of Computing
Required Core Courses
ART 13191 Introduction to Design ART 13207 Digital Photography OR MMED 20355 Photojournalism ART 13292 Computer Graphics I ART 13294 Typography I MMED 20120 Introduction to Mass Media MMED 20243 Media Design MMED 20303 Introduction to Web Publishing MMED 20314 Communication Law and Ethics CSIS 44144 Web Development I CSIS 44334 Web Development II CSIS 44335 Script Programming MKTG 55330 Principles of Marketing
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Required Courses for Concentration in Computer Science Programming:
CSIS 44141 Computer Programming I CSIS 44241 Computer Programming II CSIS 44242 Data Structures CSIS 44296 Professional Development Seminar CSIS 44345 Computer Organization CSIS 44356 Network Fundamentals CSIS 44460 Database Systems CSIS 44563 Developing Web Applications and Services
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Choose one from the following electives:
CSIS 44349 A Survey of Algorithms CSIS 44525 Theory and Implementation of Programming Languages CSIS 44443 Mobile Computing-iOS CSIS 44444 Mobile Computing-Android CSIS 44550 Operating Systems CSIS 44560 Advanced Topics in Database Systems CSIS 44561 Software Engineering Principles CSIS 44590 Current Topics in Computer Science
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NOTE: All required and elective computer science courses must be passed with a grade of “C” or better. Concentration in New Media see the School of Communication and Mass Media Concentration in Visual Imaging see the Department of Fine and Performing Arts