• Students learning how to leverage media to promote social change

    Master of Arts

    Media for Social Justice

    Inspiring, Creating, Empowering

  • Master of Arts
    Media for Social Justice

    Inspiring, Creating, Empowering

  • Master of Arts
    Media for Social Justice

    Inspiring, Creating, Empowering


Master of Arts in Media for Social Justice

Master of Arts in Media for Social Justice

The M.A. in Media for Social Justice (MSJ) is a groundbreaking advanced degree program in which students learn how to create and leverage media for social change. Throughout the one-year (+internship) program, students explore their commitment to social justice, develop skills in transmedia production and social entrepreneurship, and work closely with established media makers through our internship program.

The M.A. curriculum combines stimulating coursework in documentary, social media, entrepreneurship, and social justice media studies. The program’s transmedia approach provides an immersive media experience shaped by processes of co-creation and collaboration, as students work together to advance the cause of social justice across multiple media formats and platforms. Students will produce a professional-quality long-form video or other media project for their job-search portfolio.

Students emerge from Woodbury’s M.A. in Media for Social Justice program as media entrepreneurs, with the knowledge, tools, and networking skills necessary to produce and distribute media promoting greater social justice.

What is Transmedia?

The literal definition of transmedia is “across media,” and in the Media for Social Justice (MSJ) program, we work across media to promote positive social change. Transmedia is flexible and multiplatform. It is not limited by specific practices, tools, or formats, but represents an immersive media experience shaped by processes of co-creation and collaboration. Transmedia is consistent with the realities of today’s production environment. Due to the convergence of media, it has become outmoded to speak only in terms of film/video production, web development, print-based media, game design, etc. These fields are no longer rigidly separated, but have merged as part of the digital revolution. Our students will be right there on the cutting edge, ready to produce in this new environment now dominated by transmedia.

  • Class of 2015 visits Cuba in Summer of 2015
  • MSJ Student interviews a Cuban artist
  • MJS Students attending their weekly lecture
  • MSJ students behind the scene of their documentary project
  • MSJ students explore the City of Habana

Ready to Make the World a Better Place?

Students emerge from Woodbury’s M.A. in Media for Social Justice program as media entrepreneurs, with the knowledge, tools, and networking skills necessary to produce and distribute media promoting greater social justice. Our internship program provides an opportunity for students to gain valuable workplace experience in transmedia production and social justice entrepreneurship — prior to graduation.

We emphasize documentary, digital and social media, with night/weekend/online scheduling to accommodate working professionals.

If you are interested in applying to WU, click the Apply button on this page. Questions? Click Live Chat or the Info button. Prefer to speak to someone? Just give us a call. Enter your contact information to get on our emailing list.

Associate Professor, Chair:

Nicole Keating
Phone: 818.252.5215
Email: nicole.keating@woodbury.edu


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Woodbury University takes pride in its accomplished faculty and intimate, family-like atmosphere. In addition to teaching, our faculty continue to work as professionals in their fields, passing along the latest technology, trends, and strategies in the current market to WU students. We foster close mentoring relationships between faculty and student. Through this individual attention, we are able to know you as a person, and how we can best help you find your path to success.

Program Schedule and Curriculum

The M.A. in Media for Social Justice is a hands-on graduate program grounded in the humanities and social sciences. The one year + internship curriculum (45 unit) incorporates three strands: social justice studies, transmedia production, and creative entrepreneurship. Thesis projects, tailored to the student’s individual creative interests, will be presented at the end of the first year.

This course examines the relationship between media and social justice by exploring the theoretical/historical foundations of this connection. Since media representation structures cultural meanings, it inevitably creates social change. In this course we explore why and how this change occurs, and then learn how to harness the power of media to create positive transformation as we assess and evaluate outcomes. Students complete a research paper within a specific area of interest. Regular reading of newspapers (including obituaries) will cultivate interest in various topics. Social justice themes include such topics as race, class, gender, religion, sexuality, aging, environmental issues, health, education, poverty, intercultural awareness and human welfare.
As the boundaries break down between discrete forms of media, there has been a movement towards “transmedia” in which multiple media forms become component parts of a synergistic whole, combining to form a fulcrum in society for social change. Throughout the semester we introduce students to the Media Policy Center’s “media model” based on this notion of transmedia. Various forms, including (but not limited to) film/video production, game art and design, print media, web design, and social media come together to form social justice campaigns. In this course, students operate as a class company (developed in Creative Entrepreneurship I) and assume corporate role-playing as they examine the media model, discuss case studies, form teams, and complete production exercises strengthening their transmedia production skills. Students receive additional training in web-based technologies and video production equipment.
This course is an overview of social justice media history. We will focus primarily on social issue documentaries, but we will also discuss muckraking, radio, television, games with impact, social media, web resources, and graphic design. Although forms have always played off of one another, we examine these media with an eye towards understanding the emergence of transmedia production and distribution practices. Through in-class screenings of social media texts, we will examine and discuss how the traditional concerns of social justice media have been redefined over time.
This course teaches students (used interchangeably with the term “company leaders”) how to become social justice entrepreneurs in the creative economy, a vital force in the 21st century global economy. First we cover the fundamentals of the creative economy. Students form a class “company” and then divide themselves into teams (they will have the chance to rotate through three different groupings). After learning about various models of creative entrepreneurship through case studies, each one of these teams collaborates to identify a “transmedia” social justice concept, develop an “intent to plan,” and establish social justice goals. Students gain team-building and leadership ability, and learn about related business and communication skills (accounting, finance, management, public speaking, business plan development, etc.).


  • What I want to get out of the Media For Social Justice program is to be able to get the ins and outs of how to do the proper research, document a situation, bring awareness, and actually make a change in someone’s life.

    Alice Villagomez

    Class of 2016
  • I had all these great ideas that I needed to put down and make them tangible because I wanted to reach a bigger audience, and now here I am making my dream a reality.

    Julio Barrenzuela

    Class of 2016
  • I expect to have an online business by the time I get out of this Masters program.

    Monique Lyon

    Class of 2016
  • The goal that I have with this program is to hopefully produce my second documentary film that with the structure, advice, and guidance from the Media Policy Center who are also my instructors, help me construct it in a way where it would reach a maximum audience.

    Phil Gibbons

    Class of 2016
  • I saw this program as an opportunity to make my dream come true to make a difference in the world and I believe media is the key.

    Waleska Santiago

    Class of 2016
  • Media for Social Justice is actually creating solutions to the problems. If you see something, don’t just complain about it, do something about it.

    Jonathan Ortega

    Class of 2016
  • What led me to the Media for Social Justice program is that I have so many interests in social justice issues from food justice to private rehoming that I wanted my program to be just as socially aware as I am.

    Justin Mickens

    Class of 2016