Syllabi and Teaching Materials

Below are syllabi and resources I’ve use in my classes and talks. Feedback welcome! wolock[at] Feel free to use and share.



  • Starting a (Global) Media Studies Research Project + Sample Projectspdf [updated 1/11/20]
  • Working with Scholarly Sources pdf [updated 1/11/20]
  • Advice for Applying to a US PhD in Media Studieslink,
  • UWM Preparing Future Faculty Panel: Surviving Your Dissertation (Feb 2019) – slidespdf
  • Fighting Impostor’s Syndromeslides | pdf
  • Critical Reading & Thinkingslides | pdf


Can voting for a singer in a reality show spread and teach democratic principles? Is curating a social justice Tumblr “real work” that can make a real-world difference? This graduate-level seminar will explore these questions and the ways in which scholars, artists, and activists have tried to understand, promote, and problematize participatory and public culture. At stake is how we, as a society, define and encourage meaningful civic engagement, participation, and activism in the digital era through the production and sharing of media. Students will get hands-on experience exploring and creating digital and traditional media associated with the ideas of participatory and public culture, such as zines and podcasts. In addition, students will be responsible for doing weekly readings, participating in class discussions, posting brief reading response assignments, and writing a conference-length original research paper on a topic chosen in consultation with the professor.


This course is an upper-level undergraduate (and introductory-level graduate)
examination of global media as both a real-world phenomenon and as an
intellectual and political construct. In other words, we will explore different media systems, texts, and practices from around the world, and different ways of studying and understanding them. But we will also consider what the term “global media” means, who uses it, and to what ends. We will analyze what is at stake when people study and discuss global media, globalization, and related concepts in an era of increased movement of capital, concepts, and people. Students are expected to conduct original research as well as to engage actively with course readings and discussions.



Claire Hackett – “Gender and Race in Time Travel TV” Syllabus (Fall 2018)
Our game changed (in awesome ways!) as we progressed through the semester. This independent study was undertaken in preparation for Hackett to write her MA thesis on season 3 of Legends of Tomorrow. She builds on our independent study to argue that Legends is a reflection of contemporary US politics. The show–through its ensemble of diverse misfits–works hard to embrace and promote a progressive diversity-inclusion narrative. At the same time, its shallow representations of marginalized identities, and the structural centrality of maintaining a status quo timeline, reveal a deep inability to understand, represent, and empathize with complex experiences of exclusion, oppression, etc. As in the US more broadly, the good intentions of the former (i.e. nominal diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts), give cover for the cruelties of the latter (i.e. misrepresentation, false equivalency, bad faith politicking).
Contact her to find out more on the project (@RelebogileClair, hackett7[at]

Atinc Gurcay – “Social Movements in the Age of Digital Media” Syllabus (Fall 2019)
For Ati’s thesis project, he’s analyzing the recent repurposing, by a group of Turkish women, of Zuckerberg’s #10YearChallenge hashtag. The women of this “non-movement” use it to talk about their experiences un-veiling, often in explicitly personal and apolitical ways. Yet the personal is always political, all the more so in this instance because the disciplining of women’s bodies is a key site of the negotiation of national identity.
More broadly, in this graduate-level independent study we explored the increasing digital mediation of social movements over the last two decades. How has this shift impacted users and the communities they build, corporate platforms and their business models, and governments and their relationships with dissent? Organized around three keywords—publics, platforms, and infrastructure—we pay special attention to the digital mediation of social movements and non-movements in the Middle East and North Africa, with a focus on the unusual geographic and political position of Turkey. We particularly examine how the increasing digital mediation of social movements in Turkey has interacted in complex ways with major national political shifts over the same twenty years.
Contact him to find out more on the project (@AtincGurcay, atinc[at]


Hat Tip – Great resources from other folks!