Interactive Digital Media

Major: Interactive Digital Media
Degree Awarded: Bachelor of Science (BS)
Calendar Type: Quarter
Total Credit Hours: 186.0
Co-op Options: One Co-op (Four years)
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 50.0102
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code: 15-1134; 27-1014

About the Major

Technology and your future career prospects are evolving at lightning speeds. Where it was once as simple as pursuing “website design” or “programming,” today’s world offers—and demands—more. To truly succeed in tech, you need creativity, versatility, and an interdisciplinary skillset. You need to be able to see through the eyes of the user and understand projects from start to finish. You need to be a unicorn.

Interactive Digital Media (IDM) helps you get there.

By combining principles from a range of disciplines, IDM gives you the tools not only to understand technology but also the human principles underpinning it. You’ll get exposure to:

  • User Experience Design (UX)—Researching and advocating for the needs of people who will be using technologies, prototyping digital products, and working with agile methodologies
  • User Interface and Interaction Design (UI/IXD)—Using tools like Adobe Creative Suite to create visual experiences for technology products
  • Development—Programming the code (HTML/CSS, Javascript, PHP/MySQL, etc.) that makes products work in a variety of media (websites, apps, augmented and virtual reality, Internet of Things, etc.)
  • Information Architecture (IA) and Content Strategy—Organizing and planning information systems for digital products 
  • Project Management—Managing workflows to keep teams on track

As a freshman, you learn the basics of design. In sophomore year, you learn the coding and development skills to bring those designs to life. Your junior and senior studies are focused on electives and interdisciplinary teamwork. You’ll spend six months working full-time within a company through Drexel’s Cooperative Education program, and your capstone project will result in a full-scale, industry-level product launch. 

By the end of this program, you’ll have real-world experience, an enviable portfolio, and the highly adaptable skills to find your way in the uncertain, ever-evolving world of tech. 

 Additional Information

To find out more, visit the Westphal College’s Interactive Digital Media major web page to see student projects and successful alumni.

Degree Requirements

General Education Requirements
CIVC 101Introduction to Civic Engagement1.0
COM 230Techniques of Speaking3.0
COOP 101Career Management and Professional Development0.0
ENGL 101Composition and Rhetoric I: Inquiry and Exploratory Research3.0
ENGL 102Composition and Rhetoric II: Advanced Research and Evidence-Based Writing3.0
ENGL 103Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres3.0
MATH 119Mathematical Foundations for Design4.0
PHYS 121Physical Science for Design I4.0
PHYS 122Physical Science for Design II4.0
PSY 330Cognitive Psychology3.0
PSY 332Human Factors and Cognitive Engineering3.0
PSY 337Human-Computer Interaction3.0
UNIV A101The Drexel Experience2.0
Arts & Humanities-students elective3.0
History (HIST) elective3.0
Literature (ENGL) elective3.0
Free electives24.0
Art and Art History Requirements
ARTH 103History of Art III: Modern Art3.0
ARTH 300 [WI] History of Modern Design3.0
ARTH 314Contemporary Art 3.0
VSST 108Design I for Media3.0
VSST 109Design II for Media3.0
VSST 110Introductory Drawing3.0
Business & Management Requirements
EAM 211Strategic Management for Entertainment and Arts Management3.0
Media Requirements
DIGM 220Digital Still Imaging I3.0
FMVD 206Audio Production and Post3.0
WEST 107Maker Workshop3.0
Digital Media Core Requirements
ANIM 115Introduction to Production with Animation & VFX3.0
DIGM 105Overview of Digital Media3.0
DIGM 223Creative Concept Design3.0
DIGM 350 [WI] Digital Storytelling3.0
DIGM 475 [WI] Seminar: The Future of Digital Media3.0
DIGM 490Digital Media Senior Project9.0
DIGM 491Digital Media Senior Project Studio3.0
GMAP 260Overview of Computer Gaming3.0
Interactive Digital Media Requirements
IDM 101History of Web Development3.0
IDM 211User Interface Design I3.0
IDM 212User Interface Design II3.0
IDM 213Interaction Design3.0
IDM 215User Experience Design I3.0
IDM 216User Experience Design II3.0
IDM 221Web Design I3.0
IDM 222Web Design II3.0
IDM 231Scripting for Interactive Digital Media I3.0
IDM 232Scripting for Interactive Digital Media II3.0
IDM 241Microinteractions3.0
IDM 371Interactive Digital Media Workshop I3.0
IDM 372Interactive Digital Media Workshop II3.0
IDM 401Professional Practices in Interactive Digital Media3.0
Select five (5) of the following:15.0
Digital Cultural Heritage
Explorations in New Media
Content Strategies for Digital Products
Interactive Graphics
Web Game Design
Content Management Systems
User Interface Design for Immersive Media
WebVR
Interactive App Design I
Interactive App Design II
Interactive App Design III
Interactive App Design IV
Experimental Interactive Technologies
Internet of Things
Validating Product Ideas
User Research Methodologies
Storytelling for User Experience Design
Special Topics in Interactive Digital Media
Independent Study in Interactive Digital Media
Total Credits186.0

Writing-Intensive Course Requirements

In order to graduate, all students must pass three writing-intensive courses after their freshman year. Two writing-intensive courses must be in a student's major. The third can be in any discipline. Students are advised to take one writing-intensive class each year, beginning with the sophomore year, and to avoid “clustering” these courses near the end of their matriculation. Transfer students need to meet with an academic advisor to review the number of writing-intensive courses required to graduate.

A "WI" next to a course in this catalog may indicate that this course can fulfill a writing-intensive requirement. For the most up-to-date list of writing-intensive courses being offered, students should check the Writing Intensive Course List at the University Writing Program. Students scheduling their courses can also conduct a search for courses with the attribute "WI" to bring up a list of all writing-intensive courses available that term.

Sample Plan of Study

Term 1Credits
DIGM 105Overview of Digital Media3.0
DIGM 223Creative Concept Design3.0
ENGL 101Composition and Rhetoric I: Inquiry and Exploratory Research3.0
IDM 211User Interface Design I3.0
UNIV A101The Drexel Experience1.0
VSST 110Introductory Drawing3.0
 Term Credits16.0
Term 2
ENGL 102Composition and Rhetoric II: Advanced Research and Evidence-Based Writing3.0
IDM 101History of Web Development3.0
IDM 212User Interface Design II3.0
PSY 330Cognitive Psychology3.0
UNIV A101The Drexel Experience1.0
VSST 108Design I for Media3.0
WEST 107Maker Workshop3.0
 Term Credits19.0
Term 3
CIVC 101Introduction to Civic Engagement1.0
ENGL 103Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres3.0
IDM 213Interaction Design3.0
MATH 119Mathematical Foundations for Design4.0
PSY 337Human-Computer Interaction3.0
VSST 109Design II for Media3.0
 Term Credits17.0
Term 4
DIGM 220Digital Still Imaging I3.0
EAM 211Strategic Management for Entertainment and Arts Management3.0
GMAP 260Overview of Computer Gaming3.0
IDM 221Web Design I3.0
PHYS 121Physical Science for Design I4.0
 Term Credits16.0
Term 5
FMVD 206Audio Production and Post3.0
IDM 222Web Design II3.0
IDM 231Scripting for Interactive Digital Media I3.0
PHYS 122Physical Science for Design II4.0
PSY 332Human Factors and Cognitive Engineering3.0
 Term Credits16.0
Term 6
ANIM 115Introduction to Production with Animation & VFX3.0
IDM 215User Experience Design I3.0
IDM 232Scripting for Interactive Digital Media II3.0
IDM 241Microinteractions3.0
IDM Elective3.0
 Term Credits15.0
Term 7
ARTH 103History of Art III: Modern Art3.0
COM 230Techniques of Speaking3.0
COOP 101Career Management and Professional Development0.0
IDM 216User Experience Design II3.0
IDM Elective6.0
 Term Credits15.0
Term 8
ARTH 300 [WI] History of Modern Design3.0
DIGM 350 [WI] Digital Storytelling3.0
DIGM 475 [WI] Seminar: The Future of Digital Media3.0
IDM 371Interactive Digital Media Workshop I3.0
IDM Elective 3.0
 Term Credits15.0
Term 9
ARTH 314Contemporary Art 3.0
IDM 372Interactive Digital Media Workshop II3.0
Arts & Humanities Elective3.0
IDM Elective 3.0
Free Elective 6.0
 Term Credits18.0
Term 10
DIGM 490Digital Media Senior Project3.0
DIGM 491Digital Media Senior Project Studio1.0
IDM 401Professional Practices in Interactive Digital Media3.0
Literature (ENGL) Elective3.0
Free Elective3.0
 Term Credits13.0
Term 11
DIGM 490Digital Media Senior Project3.0
DIGM 491Digital Media Senior Project Studio1.0
History (HIST) Elective3.0
Free Electives 6.0
 Term Credits13.0
Term 12
DIGM 490Digital Media Senior Project3.0
DIGM 491Digital Media Senior Project Studio1.0
Free electives 9.0
 Term Credits13.0
Total Credit: 186.0

Co-op/Career Opportunities

Students who study interactive digital media can move on to careers as web designers, graphic designers, digital media designers, user research & experience specialists, multimedia artists, interactive designers, web programmers, and web user interface designers.

Co-op Experiences

Some past co-op employers of interactive digital media students include: 

  • Brownstein Group
  • Comcast
  • Digitas Health
  • eCity Interactive
  • Electronic Ink
  • Happy Cog

Visit the Drexel Steinbright Career Development Center web page for more detailed information on co-op and post-graduate opportunities.

Dual Accelerated Degree

The accelerated degree program enables academically qualified students to earn both their bachelor's degree and a master's degree in digital media — graduating sooner than they would in traditional programs.

Current Drexel digital media students may apply for the accelerated BS/MS degree through the Graduate College after completing 90.0 credits, but no more than 120.0 credits. Contact the Graduate College for further information.

Facilities

Digital media program facilities include a motion capture and green screen studio, a screening room, DSLR digital still cameras, HD video cameras and lighting equipment, triple boot PowerMac stations (Mac / Windows / Unix) with dual monitors, wacom tablets, game consoles, mobile devices, and 2 undergraduate open labs with 24/7 access.

Additionally, the program houses the RePlay Lab in the URBN Center which is a collaborative effort between the Digital Media program and the Computer Science department (in the College of Computing & Informatics). At Drexel University, game development does not "live" in solely one department, and so mirrors the true nature of game development in commercial settings.

Interactive Digital Media Faculty

Theo Artz, BFA (Tyler School of Art, Temple University). Associate Professor Emeritus. Digital media.
Kurt Aspland, BFA (Art Center College of Design). Adjunct Instructor. Illustrator, graphic designer and creative director
John Berton Assistant Professor. Visual effects, lighting and rendering Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI)
Milady S. Bridges, BA (Rutgers University). Assistant Teaching Professor. Animation principles, modeling, texturing, rigging, enveloping, particle simulations, lighting, compositing, and editing.
Graham D. Clark, MFA (Academy of Art University). Assistant Teaching Professor. Animation and visual effects, stereography.
Chester Cunan, BS (Drexel University). Adjunct Instructor.
Paul Diefenbach, PhD (University of Pennsylvania). Assistant Professor. Game development, real-time rendering.
Christopher Fernandez, BS (Drexel University). Adjunct Instructor. Designer and illustrator in the world of interactive design creating innovative, exciting digital campaigns and solutions
Jeremy Fernsler, BA (Pennsylvania State University ) Program Director, Game Design & Production. Assistant Teaching Professor. Digital effects artist; compositor and animator for the feature film visual effects industry.
Troy Finamore, MS (Drexel University) Program Director, Interactive Digital Media. Assistant Teaching Professor. Advertising, design and interactivity.
Bernard Flakoff, BS (Temple University). Adjunct Instructor. Creative content and strategic analytics for innovative and advanced technology platforms
Kevin Gross, MS (Drexel University). Adjunct Instructor.
Nick Jushchyshyn, MFA (Academy of Art University) Program Director, Animation and Visual Effects, VR/Immersive Media. Associate Professor. Visual effects, digital media and animation.
Jason Kirk, MS (Drexel University). Adjunct Instructor.
Frank J. Lee, PhD (Carnegie Mellon University). Professor. Human-computer interaction; cognitive engineering and science; intelligent software agents for games and education.
Robert Lloyd, MFA (Tyler School of Art, Temple University) Program Director, Game Design & Production. Assistant Teaching Professor. Game development, themed entertainment and motion simulation.
David Mauriello, BA (Lafayette College). Assistant Professor. 3D modeling and animation.
Glen Muschio, PhD (Temple University). Associate Professor. Digital media, society, communication.
Kenneth Oum, MS (Drexel University). Professor. Computer interface gaming, web development, video production.
Mark Petrovich, MS (Drexel University). Adjunct Instructor.
Stefan Rank, PhD (Vienna University of Technology). Assistant Professor. Artificial intelligence, game design and human-computer interaction.
Ryan Reed, BS (Drexel University). Adjunct Instructor.
Patrick Richardson, MS (Drexel University). Professor. Applied physics, electronics, software scripting, and physical computing.
Tony Rowe, AA (Institute of Computer Technology). Assistant Teaching Professor. Veteran AAA Game Designer, mentor at Drexel’s Entrepreneurial Game Studio. Game history, writing, and level design.
Philip Sinatra, BS (Drexel University). Professor. Website/application programming.
Jervis Thompson, BS (Drexel University). Associate Teaching Professor. Digital media, interactive multimedia.
Michael Wagner, PhD (Vienna University of Technology) Department Head, Digital Media. Professor. Production management, educational use of video games.
Ed Yakovich, MS (Philadelphia University). Professor. HTML/CSS/JS architecture and best practices.
Kenneth Yanoviak, BA (Temple University). Adjunct Instructor. Digital photographer
Diane Zatz Adjunct Instructor.
Jichen Zhu, PhD (Georgia Institute of Technology). Associate Professor. Developing humanistic and interpretive framework of computational technology, particularly artificial intelligence (AI), and constructing AI-based cultural artifacts; interactive storytelling, games and software studies.
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