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Television Production - Documentary Option

Admission to the TV-Documentary Production Option is by Portfolio Application. Applications are open for approximately the first 10 weeks of each semester, for admission in the following semester.

To submit a portfolio for admission to the TV-Documentary Option, click here


The TV-Documentary Production Option immerses students in the art and craft of creative non-fiction storytelling.  Students will spend three semesters studying the genres, the production techniques and story devices of cinematic non-fiction/documentary production, with an emphasis on high production value, cinematic, single-camera non-fiction storytelling. The final semester students will be part of a collaborative team making a short documentary thesis film.

Students master all phases of production, including producing, directing, editing and the technical skills necessary to realize documentary projects. Graduates will emerge with the professional, creative and collaborative skills critically needed in today's evolving world of documentary/non-fiction storytelling.

Students interested in this option must complete all the lower division CTVA requirements of CTVA 100, 210, 220 and one of the following CTVA 240, CTVA 250 or CTVA 260 with a C or better.

Contact Professor Judy Korin (judy.korin@csun.edu) for more information.


CSUN Documentary Awards & Festivals



#2276 (16-minute Documentary)

Finalist Student Academy Awards, Finalist CSU Media Arts Festival, Official Selection at Santa Barbara Indie Film Festival)


Shred (15-minute Documentary)

Finalist PBS SoCal/KCET Fine Cut Festival of Films; Winner, Best Documentary, CSU Media Arts Festival, Official Selection at Santa Barbara Indie Film Festival, Out On Film: Atlanta’s LGBTQ+ Festival, CSUEA BIPOC Film Festival


Don’t Blink (15-minute Documentary)

Finalist PBS SoCal/KCET Fine Cut Festival of Films: Official Selection Santa Barbara Indie Film Festival



Translucent (16-minute Documentary)

Finalist Student Academy Awards



Serve (10-minute Documentary)

Semi-finalist Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Best Student Documentary Award, Semi-finalist Sydney Indie Festival, Best Short Film Highland Park Independent Film Festival, BEA Regional Award of Excellence.



Slabbers (5-minute Documentary)

BEA Student Documentary Honorable Mention 2016



1000Xno: Students Giving Voice to a Silent Epidemic (10-minute Documentary)

Atlantic City Film Festival Special Jury Prize, 2013



Homegirl (5-minute Documentary)

CSU Media Arts Finalist Best Documentary 2012



Humble Pie (12-minute Documentary)

CSU Media Arts Finalist Best Documentary 2008



Catharsis “The story of a survivor’s art” (10 minute-Documentary)

CSU Media Arts Winner Best Documentary 2007, Spuds Festival Idaho Finalist 2008


Undying Monster (10-minute Magazine)

Spuds Festival Idaho Finalist, Best in Category, Short Form Award- Student Documentary Competition of the Broadcast Education Association, Shock Film Festival



Jenny’s Journal (10-minute Documentary)

Idaho Panhandle International Film Festival-Best Northwest Filmmaker, Calgary International Fringe Film Festival-Finalist, Westwood International Film Festival- Finalist


Dairy Cow (10-minute Documentary)

Broadcast Education Association Winner Best Documentary 2006, Spuds Festival Idaho-Best Cinematography of Festival Award, CSU Media Arts 2nd Place Best Documentary, LA Short Film Festival-Finalist, 2006 Bluegrass Independent Film Festival-Finalist


Unmask the Future (PSA)

CSU Media Arts Winner Best of Television 2006



The White Line (10-minute Documentary)

CSU Media Arts Winner Best Cinematography of Festival, CSU Media Arts 2nd Place Best Documentary


Extended Love (10-minute Documentary)

CSU Media Arts Winner Best Documentary 2005



The Ultimate Price (10-minute Documentary)

CSU Media Arts Finalist Best Documentary 2004


Requirements for the Bachelor of Arts Degree

(for students who are admitted to the TV-Documentary Production Option )


TV-Documentary Production Option


I. LOWER DIVISION (12 units)


Students need to complete with a passing grade of C or higher:

  • CTVA 100 Introduction to Mass Communication Arts (3)
  • CTVA 210 Television-Film Aesthetics (3)
  • CTVA 220 Foundations of Media Writing (3)


and ONE of the following:

  • CTVA 240 Fundamentals of Video Production (3)
  • CTVA 250 Fundamentals of Film Production (3)
  • CTVA 260 Intro Digital Filmmaking (3)



CTVA majors wishing to enter the upper division TV-Documentary Production Option curriculum must successfully complete all lower division requirements, with a grade of C or better, and submit a TV-Documentary Production Portfolio Review[2]  Application.

Upon the approval of a portfolio by the CTVA faculty and the successful completion of the lower division requirements as indicated above, a student may continue with upper division TV-Documentary Production Option courses as a CTVA/TV-Documentary Production Major.



  • CTVA 319 Criticism in CTVA (3)


Select ONE:
  • CTVA 305 History of Television (3)
  • CTVA 310 History of American Cinema (3)


Select ONE:
  • CTVA 351 Anatomy of Film Producing (3)
  • CTVA 480 Entertainment Media Mgt (3)
  • CTVA 482 Network Program Development (3)
  • CTVA 487 Soc. Controls & Reg of Media (3)


Select ONE:
  • CTVA 329 A&B Program Production (3)
  • CTVA 329C Program Production (3)
  • CTVA 494 A&B Internship (3)




Take the following:


1st semester in Option:
  • CTVA 331 Producing the Documentary (3)


Take ONE of the following Skill Areas according to your portfolio acceptance:
  • CTVA 342 Digital Cinematography (3)
  • CTVA 343 Television Production Sound (3)
  • CTVA 352 Nonlinear Digital Editing (3)
  • CTVA 455 Principles of Production Mgmt (3)


2nd Semester in Option:
  • CTVA 341 Single Camera Television Prod (3)


3rd Semester in Option:
  • CTVA 441 Directing the TV Documentary (3)


Any Semester in Option:
  • CTVA 301 Research CTVA (3)
  • CTVA 416 Documentary Tradition (3)
  • 3 Additional Elective Units (3 units) Select additional upper division units in CTVA or allied field (with the approval of an advisor) as prescribed in the official departmental advisement form for TV-Documentary Production Option



Summary of Units


Total Units in the Option - 45

General Education Units - 48

Additional Units - 27

Total Units Required for the Degree - 120