Interactive Digital Media

Major: Interactive Digital Media
Degree Awarded: Bachelor of Science (BS)
Calendar Type: Quarter
Total Credit Hours: 188.0
Co-op Options: One Co-op (Four years); Three Co-ops (Five years)
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 11.0801
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code: 15-1250

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 webpage 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 Development1.0
ENGL 101Composition and Rhetoric I: Inquiry and Exploratory Research3.0
or ENGL 111 English Composition I
ENGL 102Composition and Rhetoric II: Advanced Research and Evidence-Based Writing3.0
or ENGL 112 English Composition II
ENGL 103Composition and Rhetoric III: Themes and Genres3.0
or ENGL 113 English Composition III
MATH 119Mathematical Foundations for Design4.0
PHYS 170Electricity and Motion3.0
PHYS 171Computational Lab for Electricity and Motion1.0
PHYS 175Light and Sound3.0
PHYS 176Computational Lab for Light and Sound1.0
PSY 330Cognitive Psychology3.0
UNIV A101The Drexel Experience2.0
Arts & Humanities-students elective3.0
History (HIST) elective4.0
Literature (ENGL) elective3.0
Social Science Elective6.0
Free electives23.0
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
FMVD 206Audio Production and Post3.0
INFO 110Introduction to Human-Computer Interaction3.0
PHTO 110Photography3.0
PROD 215Design Thinking in Product Design4.0
WEST 107Maker Workshop3.0
Digital Media Core Requirements
ANIM 115Introduction to Production with Animation & VFX3.0
DIGM 105Overview of Digital Media3.0
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 211User Interface Design I3.0
IDM 212User Interface Design II3.0
IDM 213Interaction Design3.0
IDM 214Human Factors Engineering3.0
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 250Content Management Systems3.0
IDM 371Interactive Digital Media Workshop I3.0
IDM 372Interactive Digital Media Workshop II3.0
IDM 401Professional Practices in Interactive Digital Media3.0
IDM 418Storytelling for User Experience Design3.0
Select three (3) of the following:9.0
Digital Cultural Heritage
Explorations in New Media
Content Strategies for Digital Products
History of Web Development
Interactive Graphics
Web Game Design
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
Special Topics in Interactive Digital Media
Independent Study in Interactive Digital Media
Total Credits188.0

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

Four year, One Co-op

First Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
DIGM 1053.0ENGL 102 or 1123.0CIVC 1011.0VACATION
ENGL 101 or 1113.0IDM 2123.0ENGL 103 or 1133.0 
IDM 2113.0PHTO 1103.0IDM 2133.0 
PROD 2154.0UNIV A1011.0INFO 1103.0 
UNIV A1011.0VSST 1083.0MATH 1194.0 
VSST 1103.0WEST 1073.0VSST 1093.0 
 17 16 17 0
Second Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
EAM 2113.0ANIM 1153.0IDM 2153.0ARTH 1033.0
FMVD 2063.0IDM 2143.0IDM 2323.0COM 2303.0
GMAP 2603.0IDM 2223.0IDM 2413.0COOP 1011.0
IDM 2213.0IDM 2313.0IDM 4183.0IDM 2163.0
PHYS 1703.0PHYS 1753.0Elective3.0IDM 2503.0
PHYS 1711.0PHYS 1761.0 IDM Elective3.0
 16 16 15 16
Third Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
ARTH 3003.0ARTH 3143.0COOP EXPERIENCECOOP EXPERIENCE
DIGM 4753.0IDM 3723.0  
IDM 3713.0Arts & Humanities Elective3.0  
PSY 3303.0IDM Elective3.0  
IDM Elective3.0Social Science Elective3.0  
 15 15 0 0
Fourth Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCredits 
DIGM 4903.0DIGM 4903.0DIGM 4903.0 
DIGM 4911.0DIGM 4911.0DIGM 4911.0 
IDM 4013.0History (HIST) Elective4.0Free Electives9.0 
Literature (ENGL) Elective3.0Free Electives8.0  
Social Science Elective3.0   
Free Elective3.0   
 16 16 13 
Total Credits 188

Five year, Three Co-ops

First Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
DIGM 1053.0ENGL 102 or 1123.0CIVC 1011.0VACATION
ENGL 101 or 1113.0IDM 2123.0COOP 1011.0 
IDM 2113.0PHTO 1103.0ENGL 103 or 1133.0 
PROD 2154.0UNIV A1011.0IDM 2133.0 
UNIV A1011.0VSST 1083.0INFO 1103.0 
VSST 1103.0WEST 1073.0MATH 1194.0 
  VSST 1093.0 
 17 16 18 0
Second Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
EAM 2113.0ANIM 1153.0COOP EXPERIENCECOOP EXPERIENCE
FMVD 2063.0IDM 2143.0  
GMAP 2603.0IDM 2223.0  
IDM 2213.0IDM 2313.0  
PHYS 1703.0PHYS 1753.0  
PHYS 1711.0PHYS 1761.0  
 16 16 0 0
Third Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
IDM 2153.0ARTH 1033.0COOP EXPERIENCECOOP EXPERIENCE
IDM 2323.0COM 2303.0  
IDM 2413.0IDM 2163.0  
IDM 4183.0IDM 2503.0  
Elective3.0IDM Elective3.0  
 15 15 0 0
Fourth Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
ARTH 3003.0ARTH 3143.0COOP EXPERIENCECOOP EXPERIENCE
DIGM 4753.0IDM 3723.0  
IDM 3713.0Arts & Humanities Elective3.0  
PSY 3303.0IDM Elective3.0  
IDM Elective3.0Social ScienceElective3.0  
 15 15 0 0
Fifth Year
FallCreditsWinterCreditsSpringCredits 
DIGM 4903.0DIGM 4903.0DIGM 4903.0 
DIGM 4911.0DIGM 4911.0DIGM 4911.0 
IDM 4013.0History (HIST) Elective4.0Free Electives9.0 
Literature (ENGL) Elective3.0Free Electives8.0  
Social Science Elective3.0   
Free Elective3.0   
 16 16 13 
Total Credits 188

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 and 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 webpage for more detailed information on co-op and post-graduate opportunities.

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 two 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

Kurt Aspland, BFA (Art Center College of Design). Adjunct Instructor. Illustrator, graphic designer and creative director
Chester Cunan, BS (Drexel University). Adjunct Instructor.
Paul Diefenbach, PhD (University of Pennsylvania). Associate 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
Troy Finamore, MS (Drexel University) Program Director, Interactive Digital Media. Associate 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, 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 (Temple University) Program Director, Game Design & Production. Associate 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). Associate 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.
Philip Sinatra, BS (Drexel University). Professor. Website/application programming.
Jervis Thompson, BS (Drexel University). Teaching Professor. Digital media, interactive multimedia.
Michael Wagner, PhD (Vienna University of Technology) Program Director, Digital Media. Associate Professor. Educational use of digital media and computer 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.

Emeritus Faculty

Theo Artz, BFA (Tyler School of Art, Temple University). Associate Professor. Digital media.
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