Media and Digital Studies

History - Philosophy - Aesthetics

Understanding the reality of "digital cultures" in its dynamics and consequences is one of the most urgent tasks of our time. For more than half a century, digital media have unfolded their culture-generating power in all areas of life. They have thus fundamentally changed the perception of the past, the aesthetic forms of communication, the concepts of our thinking and the ways we live together. In the Masters programme Media and Digital Cultures, you will learn to deal with the complex challenges this poses for the present and the future in a way that is precise in terms of content, methodically reflective, unprejudiced and argumentative.

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The Masters programme Media and Digital Cultures is networked with a programme of international guest researchers who conduct research on digital cultures in Lüneburg.

The Programme

  • Topics
  • Structure
  • Features

The Programme

Topics

The Media and Digital Cultures study programme teaches humanities and social science ways of thinking and analysing in order to intellectually penetrate digital cultures and act critically within them. This includes historical and philosophical as well as aesthetic and sociological competences. Based on this, the Masters programme qualifies students to develop systematic, empirically founded and theoretically advanced knowledge about the genesis, dynamics and consequences of digital cultures. Fundamental problems of cultural studies such as meaning, knowledge, action, subject, power, etc. play an essential role for questions such as:

What are the crucial phenomena and sites of the unfolding of digital cultures?

What technological, social and aesthetic upheavals are taking place in digital cultures?

How do digital cultures change our perception of the past and the future?

What new concepts and methods are needed to explore digital cultures?

And what role does the knowledge of cultural studies disciplines play in digital cultures?

In and with digital cultures, social structures and processes of togetherness and communication, relationships of organisation and work change. But aesthetic experiences and design practices as well as historical and philosophical terms and concepts are just as affected. The Masters programme is based on the view that productive interdisciplinarity is only possible from a fundamental mastery of disciplinary methods and epistemologies. At the same time, these are subjected to critical expansion and revision because digital cultures are also changing the university itself.

The Masters programme Media and Digital Cultures is embedded in an international research context on digital cultures and is committed to the renowned German-language tradition of Kulturwissenschaften and German Media Theory.

Structure

The Masters Media and Digital Cultures comprises modules in four different areas: Core Area, Electives, Cultural Studies Integration Area and Complementary Studies.

The four core modules focus on the following subject areas:

  • History
  • Philosophy
  • Social Organisation
  • Aesthetics

The special feature here is to counter a cultural loss of order and orientation by focusing on fundamental historical, philosophical, aesthetic and social questions and to make the experience and knowledge of the disciplines involved fruitful for understanding digital cultures.

In addition to the core modules, students can access a wide range of topic-oriented electives to pursue questions about media and digital cultures on concrete phenomena:

2nd Semester (2 x 5 CP)

  • Auditory Culture (5 CP)
  • Democracy and the public (5 CP)
  • Gender, Queerness, Bodies (5 CP)
  • Crises and Ruptures in a Global Context (5 CP)
  • Organization: Structure, Power, Economies (5 CP)
  • The arts in practice (5 CP)
  • Technology and Culture (5 CP)

3rd Semester (2 x 5 CP)

  • Digital Sound Cultures (5 CP)
  • Violence and Social Protest (5 CP)
  • Capitalist Dynamics and Social Change (5 CP)
  • Migration and Circulation (5 CP)
  • Organization: Space, Aesthetics, Materiality (5 CP)
  • Urban Culture and Space (5 CP)
  • Knowledge and Research in Digital Cultures (5 CP)

Students also take modules in two other areas. The first is the Cultural Studies Integration Area, in which they get to know the history, methods and current debates of cultural studies together with fellow students from other Masters programmes. Core, elective and integration areas are brought into a functionally balanced relationship here. Students can independently set thematic and methodological focal points and pursue them in a targeted manner in order to find a disciplinarily informed and factually precise approach to interdisciplinary cultural studies research.

The second area is Complementary Studies, in which students go beyond their own field of study and expand their understanding of other subject cultures and issues in exchange with students from all Masters programmes. The aim is to provide students with an understanding of knowledge, science and research in a larger context and to promote transdisciplinary cooperation.

Together, the four components mentioned above prepare students for the research-based Masters dissertation and the Masters Forum, the colloquium, in the fourth semester. There, students present and discuss their own research work.

Further information on the course content of the Masters programme Media and Digital Studies can be found here.

Features

The Masters programme is based on the conceptual and methodological competences of different subject traditions in order to ground an informed and differentiated interdisciplinarity on them. This enables students to pursue their own topics, objects and research interests from multiple perspectives and to competently meet the historical, philosophical, aesthetic and social challenges of digital cultures.

To this end, the study programme teaches methods of source-oriented, historical work as well as an understanding of media-historical questions and ways of explanation. These are supplemented by (organisational) sociological theories and methods on the relationship between technology, work and organisation. The same applies to the relevant lines of philosophical thought, its concepts and their viability for the penetration of digital cultures. Finally, students deal with the aesthetic standards of digital cultures and the interplay between perception and technology.

The Masters programme Media and Digital Cultures is part of an overarching specialisation at Leuphana University Lüneburg that has been established for about ten years, which in turn is reflected in a corresponding appointment policy and international research contexts. Students and lecturers thus work together in a research-intensive, interdisciplinary and international environment.

Faculty

Programme Director

  • Prof. Dr. Claus Pias

Lecturers in the Core Area

Most of the core modules in order of the "Media and Digital Cultures" cultural studies programme are taught by: Prof. Dr. Claus Pias (Media Theory and History of Media), Prof. Dr. Erich Hörl (Media Culture and Media Philosophy), Prof. Dr. Jan Müggenburg (History of Media and Science), Dr. Gottfried Schnödl (Media Theory and History of Media), Dr. Christian Voller (Media Culture and Media Philosophy) as well as the professorships for Media and Digital Cultures (N.N.) and Media Aesthetics and Media Technology (N.N.).

The integration modules and electives are taught by all lecturers at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences.

International Research Context

Study regulations/Subject-specific schedule

The General Assessment Regulations and the Subject-Specific Schedules can be found here.

The Subject-Specific Schedule shows the subject-specific curriculum. The modules to be taken and their content, the types of courses, the type and number of examinations are formulated in detail and in a legally binding manner.

Semester Abroad

You can organise a semester abroad through the Erasmus+ programme or as a free mover. We recommend the third semester for your semester abroad. You can find more information on our partner universities on the International Office pages.

Career Prospects

The degree programme is not a practical media programme and therefore does not train students for a specific profession. Nevertheless, the different focal points and elective options in the Masters degree in Media and Digital Cultures allow for different specialisations. The focus is on imparting skills for demanding professional fields with creative and reflexive thinking, e.g. in the field of media and communication consulting, public relations and journalism, programme and offer design in the entertainment industry, in the museum sector and exhibition business. In addition, a growing field of professions is emerging in which a capacity for critical reflection as well as clear and confident communication is required, for example in civic or political organisations and foundations.

In a special way, the Masters programme qualifies students for all positions in research and teaching that require proof of special academic qualifications. The Leuphana Graduate School enables graduates of the programme to make a smooth transition to a doctoral or a Ph.D. programme in order to pursue a career in academia.

With the Doctoral Track, qualified Bachelor graduates have the opportunity to be admitted to a doctoral programme from the first semester of their Masters programme, to enrol in the doctoral courses and to become part of the scientific community. The students are integrated into a thematic doctoral research group that corresponds to their research topic. This enables them to plan their Masters and doctoral studies to build on each other.

Admission requirements & Application

You can find all information about the admission requirements, the application and the selection procedure on our "Apply" page.

Impressions of the programme

At a Glance

Degree awarded: Mas­ter of Arts, MA
Application deadline: 31 August 2022
Type of programme: academic prerequisites
Study Places: 25
Start date: Every win­ter term, Oc­to­ber
Extent: 120 ECTS
Duration: 4 se­mes­ters
Language: German, some electives in English
Location: Lüne­burg
Semester contribution: ca. 370 EUR

Contact and Counselling

First contact point

The Information Office (Infoportal) is your contact point for

Information Office

Building 8, Ground Level
Fon +49.4131.677-2277
infoportal@leuphana.de

By telephone
Mon - Thu 9 am - 4 pm
Friday 9 am - 12 noon

Campus opening hours
Mon - Thu 9.30 am - 12 noon +
1 pm - 2.30 pm
Fr 9.30 am - 12 noon

Student Counselling

To make an appointment with our Student Counselling Service, please call the Information Office under the number +49 4131 677-2277.

Appointments are usually available in the following time slots:
Tuesday 2 - 4 pm
Wednesday 3 - 4 pm
Thursday 4 - 6 pm