Certificate in Media and Politics (CMAP)

Overview

The Certificate in Media and Politics (CMAP) is offered jointly by Georgetown School of Foreign Service in Qatar (SFS-Q) and Northwestern University in Qatar (NU-Q). It capitalizes on the strengths of both universities to provide students with an enhanced understanding of the role of mass communication in political, diplomatic, and policy-making processes, as well as the role of politics in the shaping of mass media products and policies.

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Certificate Goals

As an interdisciplinary program, Media and Politics will:

  • Provide students with an enhanced understanding of the role of mass communication in political, diplomatic, and policy-making processes, as well as the role of politics in the shaping of mass media products, messages, and policies.
  • Prepare students with a better understanding of how politicians, diplomats, and policy-makers influence, and are themselves influenced by, the media in its myriad forms, genres, and formats.
  • Introduce students to key issues and theories in media and politics and help them reflect on the connectedness between these two fields of study.
  • Equip students with theoretical frameworks for studying and analyzing the complex interrelation between media and politics. 

Northwestern University in Qatar students can pursue a Minor in Media and Politics. NU-Q students should refer to the NU-Q website for detailed program requirements.

CMAP Specific Requirements

3 courses at NU-Q + 3 courses at SFS-Q + certificate thesis

Introduction to Media History and Theory (choose two of the following NU-Q courses)

  • MIT 212 Exploring Global Media
  • MIT 230 Understanding Media Contexts
  • MIT 298 Alternative Media in the Middle East

Advanced Media Theory (choose one of the following NU-Q courses)

  • MIT 270 Theories of Mediated Communication
  • MIT 313 Documentary History and Criticism
  • JOUR 390 Special Topics: Islam, America, and the Media
  • POLS 390 Media and Politics in the Arab World
  • MIT 351 National Cinemas of the Middle East

Introduction to Media and Politics (choose one SFS-Q course)

  • GOVT 318 Media and Foreign Policy
  • INAF 257 Media, Culture, and Politics in the Middle East

Comparative Politics (choose two of the following SFS-Q courses excluding GOVT 006, 040, 060 or 121)

  • GOVT 317 Social Movements and Interest Groups
  • GOVT 416 Comparative Politics of the Middle East
  • GOVT 444 Arab-Israeli Conflict
  • GOVT 458 Arab Politics in Transition
  • GOVT 477 Gulf Politics
  • INAF 370 Revolutions in Comparative Perspective
  • IPOL 368 Islamic Movements
  • IPOL 382 Authority and Democracy in MENA
  • IPOL 387 EU and GCC: Comparative Perspectives

Note: Courses that satisfy the Certificate requirements may vary each semester or year.

Final Thesis

In the senior year, each SFS-Q student pursuing the Certificate in Media and Politics writes a 25-30 page research thesis on a topic related to media and politics, under the supervision of a faculty mentor. Students can elect to revise and expand a paper undertaken as part of a previous course.

The completed thesis must be reviewed and approved by the Media and Politics faculty. The student will give a formal presentation of the thesis during the spring semester in which the thesis is completed.

All of the above requirements must be successfully met to earn the Certificate in Media and Politics.  The Certificate is then posted to the official Georgetown University transcript.

Sample Degree Plans

Students from any SFS-Q major can apply and be accepted to pursue the Certificate in Media and Politics.  This sample degree plan chart shows what the third and fourth years of studies might look like if pursuing a major and the CMAP and is meant to help with curriculum planning.  The chart assumes the following:

  • Core curriculum requirements have been completed by the end of the second year
  • 3.5 years of language instruction are needed to achieve language proficiency

Use this chart as a guide, but recognize that each student’s degree plan will vary.

Contact us

Interested students should discuss the Certificate in the context of curriculum planning with their academic advisors. They should then contact the curricular dean for the Certificate in Media and Politics and/or the faculty chairperson of the Certificate in Media and Politics.

  • The CMAP Curricular Dean is Heather Kerst, Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs.
  • The CMAP Faculty Chair is Mohamed Zayani, Associate Professor of Humanities at SFS-Q. 
     

Apply 

SFS-Q students must Apply Online to the Certificate in Media and Politics by the posted deadline in their second year of studies.  The deadline is usually in March.

There are limited seats available in the Certificate Program’s courses, so the application process is competitive. The review committee will look at overall grade point average and courses taken as part of our assessment.  We will pay special attention to the essay, so make sure it is concise and well-written.  The essay must address specific academic areas of interest and how these connect to the Certificate.

Information for Current Certificate Students and Thesis Mentors

Sample Degree Plans

Students from any SFS-Q major can apply and be accepted to pursue the Certificate in Media and Politics.  This sample degree plan chart shows what the third and fourth years of studies might look like if pursuing a major and the CMAP and is meant to help with curriculum planning.  The chart assumes the following:

  • Core curriculum requirements have been completed by the end of the second year
  • 3.5 years of language instruction are needed to achieve language proficiency

Use this chart as a guide, but recognize that each student’s degree plan will vary.

  • Are the CMAP courses separate from the four cross-registration courses Georgetown students are allowed to take?

    No, CMAP students must use three of the four total cross-registration courses to satisfy the three NU-Q Certificate course requirements.  Plan accordingly to take no more than one cross-registration course before applying to the Certificate.  After completing the first year of studies, students can take one cross-registration course per semester, up to a total of four courses during their Georgetown studies.

  • Do I have to wait until the start of classes to know which NU-Q course I can take that semester?

    No.  Students pursuing the Certificate will have early cross-registration access to Certificate courses at NU-Q, and NU-Q students have early cross-registration access to SFS-Q Certificate courses. The CMAP dean will contact all students during pre-registration each semester to coordinate cross-registration for CMAP courses.

  • Can I pursue Honors in the Major and the Certificate?

    Students who plan to pursue Honors in the Major must complete the CMAP thesis before the start of the fall semester of the senior year.  If students can’t complete the CMAP thesis before the start of the senior year, they need to then choose EITHER the Certificate OR Honors in the Major.

  • When can I apply to pursue the Certificate?

    Students must apply by the posted deadline of their sophomore/second year of studies.  Occasionally juniors/ third year students will be allowed to apply. 

  • Is the Certificate limited to certain majors?

    No, CMAP, like other SFS-Q certificate programs, is open to any SFS-Q student, regardless of major. . Some will require more curriculum planning and sequencing than others, so plan early.

  • Can I enroll in Certificate courses before applying to the Certificate?

    Most CMAP courses will be taken in the junior and senior years, but CMAP courses taken earlier than that, or before applying to CMAP, will count toward the Certificate.

  • What is the expected length for the Certificate thesis, and what else can you tell me about the thesis?

    The thesis will be 25-30 double-spaced pages, including references and endnotes.  The submitted thesis will receive a Pass/Fail grade and not a letter grade.  The thesis topic must be related to media and politics, and the topic must be approved at the beginning of the senior year by the Media and Politics faculty chairperson.  Students must present the thesis publicly in the spring semester of the senior year.

  • Useful Information
    • CMAP students must use three of the four total cross-registration courses allowed to take the three CMAP courses at NU-Q.
    • Students pursuing the Certificate will have early registration access to Certificate courses at NU-Q, and NU-Q students have early registration access to SFS-Q Certificate courses. The CMAP dean will contact all students during pre-registration each semester to coordinate cross-registration for CMAP courses.
    • Students who plan to pursue Honors in the Major must complete the CMAP thesis before the start of the fall semester of the senior year. If students can’t complete CMAP before starting honors, they need to discuss which to choose with an academic adviser.
    • Sophomores must apply in March of their sophomore year. The specific deadline will be announced each year.
    • CMAP, like other SFS-Q certificate programs, is open to students pursuing any major. Some will require more curriculum planning and sequencing than others, so plan early.
    • Most CMAP courses will be taken in the junior and senior years, but CMAP courses taken earlier than that, or before applying to CMAP, will count toward the Certificate.