Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions per week, 2 hours per session

Course Goals

▪Gain the understanding necessary to safely pilot a drone within current FAA guidelines and respond readily to exigent situations.

▪Develop the technical capability to capture engaging aerial cinematography.

▪Acquire the aeronautical knowledge required for FAA Part 107 airman certification.

▪Engage in discussions with a spirit of openness and collaboration.

▪Contribute new ideas to the classroom. Explore perspectives. Competently field questions. Reflect on what is learned and think of ways to make improvements.

Instructor Expectations

Learn and have fun! Respect varying points of view. Be present for class. Arrive prepared with finished work and all appropriate materials. Embrace academic integrity. Take responsibility for your own learning.


Student-Teacher Tutorials are designed to strengthen the understanding of the creative process, while assignments stress cinematic aesthetics and formal concerns.


Assignments                               50%

Quizzes                                       30%

Final Paper                                 10%

Participation                                5%

(In-class contribution and interaction with other students and the instructor. Asking questions, offering answers, sharing opinions and ideas are all ways of demonstrating participation.)

Attendance                                 5%

(Punctuality counts. Attendance is taken sharp at the start of class.)

*Assignments turned in late will receive one letter grade lower per day.

**Independent reading and media viewing are vital components of the course and to be completed outside of class.

***Drinks are permitted in the classroom. Students are expected to pick up after themselves.

****Plagiarism, cell phone use, text messaging during class…hmm.


Week              Topics                                                                                                        Key Dates

1                      Course Introduction

                        Retrospective of Unmanned Flight

2                      Rudiments of Aeronautical Theory

                        Fundamentals of Multi-Rotor Flying I

3                      Fundamentals of Multi-Rotor Flying II

                        Legal and Regulatory Issues

4                      Environmental Considerations                                                               Quiz 1

                        FAA Part 107

5                      Camera Essentials

                        Approaches to Storytelling

6                      Composition and Aesthetics I

                        Composition and Aesthetics II

7                      Color Correction and Grading

                        Assembly and Delivery

8                      Equipment Selection and Maintenance                                              Quiz 2


9                      Student-Teacher Tutorials

                        Student-Teacher Tutorials

10                    Project 1—Concept (10%; in Pairs)

                        Aerial Photography in Film and TV—Analysis and Appraisal

11                    Project Presentations

                        FAA Part 107 (Review)

12                    Project 2—Emotion (20%; Individual)                                                     Quiz 3

                        First Principles of Media Literacy

13                    Project Presentations

                        Student Symposium

14                    Project 3—Story (20%; Individual or in Pairs)

                        Storytelling Revisited

15                    Break


16                    Project Presentations

                        Course Review

18                    Exams Week                                                                                             Final Paper Due