Student Work

Watch: Short Docs from the 2017 Documentary Video Institute

Watch: Short Docs from the 2017 Documentary Video Institute

The 2017 Documentary Video Institute brought 24 students from around the country for an immersive, weeklong training in video documentary. Led by six instructors, students worked in groups of four to produce short documentaries centered on the Hayti neighborhood, a historically African-American community near downtown Durham. The topics were pre-produced by CDS intern Autavius Smith, […]


Listen: Short Audio Docs from the 2017 Hearing Is Believing Audio Institute

Listen: Short Audio Docs from the 2017 Hearing Is Believing Audio Institute

In July 2017, the fourteenth annual Hearing Is Believing audio institute took place at the Center for Documentary Studies. In this weeklong, intensive bootcamp, run by CDS Continuing Education, students learned the basics of creating short audio documentaries. They chose from a list of interview subjects who’d been contacted in advance (thanks to the work […]


Enjoy: Final Projects by Spring 2017 Certificate in Documentary Arts Grads

Enjoy: Final Projects by Spring 2017 Certificate in Documentary Arts Grads

On May 24, 2017, seven CDS Continuing Education students graduated with a Certificate in Documentary Arts. They presented their final projects before an audience of friends, family, teachers, fellow students, and fans of documentary in the Full Frame Theater at the American Tobacco Campus. A reception followed in the Boiler Room outside the theater. The projects […]


Listen: Short Audio Docs from the 2016 Hearing Is Believing Audio Institute

Listen: Short Audio Docs from the 2016 Hearing Is Believing Audio Institute

In July 2016, CDS Continuing Education held the thirteenth annual Hearing Is Believing audio institute, a weeklong, immersive audio boot camp. 25 students from around the country were guided by CDS audio program director John Biewen and visiting instructor Shea Shackelford, with presentations by guest speakers Tina Antolini, creator of the Southern Foodways Alliance’s Gravy podcast, and John […]


Enjoy! Student work from Hal Goodtree’s Night Photography class

Enjoy! Student work from Hal Goodtree's Night Photography class

Over the course of six evenings in September and October of 2016, photographer and filmmaker Hal Goodtree brought eight CDS Continuing Education students out into the streets of Durham to learn Documentary Night Photography. They learned all about shooting in low light, then reviewed their work in group sessions each week. See a slideshow of their work below. Goodtree […]


Spotlight on Student Work: Dave Morrow’s “Humans of Findlay”

Spotlight on Student Work: Dave Morrow's "Humans of Findlay"

When David Morrow started taking classes through the Continuing Education program at the Center for Documentary Studies (CDS) in Spring 2015, his ambitious multimedia project, Humans of Findlay, was already well underway. It has since been published as a book (so far just “Volume I”), and online as an ever-growing website. Inspired by photographer Brandon Stanton’s blog […]


Enjoy: Final Projects by Fall 2016 Certificate in Documentary Arts Grads

Enjoy: Final Projects by Fall 2016 Certificate in Documentary Arts Grads

On December 9, 2016, seven CDS Continuing Education students showed their final projects and received the Certificate in Documentary Arts. The graduation took place before an audience of friends, family, teachers, fellow students, and fans of documentary in the Full Frame Theater at the American Tobacco Campus. A reception followed in the Boiler Room outside the theater. The six […]


Undergraduate Jeainny Kim’s “Welcoming Uncertainty: Portraits and Scanner Works”

Undergraduate Jeainny Kim's "Welcoming Uncertainty: Portraits and Scanner Works"

Jeainny Kim (Trinity ’18) received a 2016 Summer Study in the Arts award from Duke University’s Council for the Arts, having been nominated for this honor by her DOCST 318S Photography Workshop instructor, MJ Sharp, and with the support of CDS’s faculty. Kim applied her award this past summer towards a Summer Residency in Photography at […]


November 17: “East Durham Stories” From CDS’s 2016 Documentary Video Institute Screen at Durham Public Library

November 17: "East Durham Stories" From CDS's 2016 Documentary Video Institute Screen at Durham Public Library

In June 2016, the thirteenth edition of the Center for Documentary Studies‘ Documentary Video Institute, offered each summer through our Continuing Education program, once again focused on the East Durham area. Twenty-four students from across the nation were guided through a week-long course in all aspects of documentary filmmaking. Their interview subjects were a pre-selected cross-section of […]


2016 John Hope Franklin Student Documentary Award Winners

2016 John Hope Franklin Student Documentary Award Winners

Five undergraduates from local universities pursued summerlong documentary projects as recipients of the 2016 John Hope Franklin Student Documentary Awards. While many of the Center for Documentary Studies‘ awards are national or international in focus, the John Hope Franklin awards go to Triangle-area undergraduates who wish to pursue projects involving oral history, photography, film or video, and/or writing. Established by […]


Watch: “Anytown USA” Student Videos on Roseboro, North Carolina

Watch: “Anytown USA” Student Videos on Roseboro, North Carolina

Anytown, USA is a continuing education course at the Center for Documentary Studies developed and taught by longtime instructor Randy Benson. For its eighth season it shone a spotlight on Roseboro, North Carolina, a small town ninety miles southeast of Durham. With the help of Roseboro mayor Alice Butler, ten students traveled to Roseboro to meet […]


“Beyond the Front Porch 2016” Features Work by Certificate in Doc Studies Grads

"Beyond the Front Porch 2016" Features Work by Certificate in Doc Studies Grads

The Certificate in Documentary Studies program attracts Duke undergraduates to the Center for Documentary Studies from across the arts and sciences. Under the guidance of Nancy Kalow and Alex Harris, six seniors in the Fall 2015 and Spring 2016 Documentary Capstone Seminars completed a final project as the culmination of their documentary studies classes. An exhibition […]


May 11 & 12: Certificate in Documentary Arts Grads Present Final Projects

May 11 & 12: Certificate in Documentary Arts Grads Present Final Projects

At a two-night graduation event at the Full Frame Theater, seven Continuing Education students at the Center for Documentary Studies will present their final projects to the public and receive their Certificate in Documentary Arts, having completed a structured sequence of courses. During the course, students finish a substantial documentary work—projects that often move out into the world […]


2016 Julia Harper Day Award Winner: Katie Jane Fernelius

2016 Julia Harper Day Award Winner: Katie Jane Fernelius

The Julia Harper Day Award was created by the Center for Documentary Studies in 1992 in memory of the young woman who was CDS’s first staff member, a writer and photographer of real accomplishment. This $500 award goes to a graduating Duke University senior who has demonstrated excellence in documentary studies and contributed significantly to CDS programs. This year’s Julia […]


“MFA|EDA 2016”: Thesis Exhibition and Events at Multiple Duke and Durham Venues

"MFA|EDA 2016": Thesis Exhibition and Events at Multiple Duke and Durham Venues

This spring, Duke University’s MFA in Experimental and Documentary Arts celebrates the successes of the Class of 2016 in MFA|EDA 2016, the program’s annual monthlong thesis exhibition at sites across Duke’s campus and downtown Durham. Site-specific projects by sixteen MFA|EDA graduating students include presentations of film and video, installation, sculpture, photography, print-making, interactive arts, performance, sound, and multimedia. Check […]


Fall 2016: Three New Undergraduate Classes in Documentary Studies

Fall 2016: Three New Undergraduate Classes in Documentary Studies

We are excited to announce three brand new undergraduate courses debuting this fall at the Center for Documentary Studies. Taught by CDS director Wesley Hogan and Bernie Herman of UNC-Chapel Hill, Charles Thompson, and Jaki Shelton Green, the classes highlight a diverse range of documentary inquiry. Read descriptions of the courses and watch preview videos below. Learn more […]


CDS Announces 2016 Undergraduate Summer School Classes

CDS Announces 2016 Undergraduate Summer School Classes

The Center for Documentary Studies is sponsoring four summer school classes for Duke University undergraduates, see below, in addition to a number of other summer courses cross-listed with Documentary Studies (DOCST). (The classes are also open to high school students and visiting undergrads.) Click here for more information on how to register. Scroll down for […]


MFA|EDA Class of 2017 Launches “Influences” Blog

MFA|EDA Class of 2017 Launches “Influences” Blog

“In the first semester of the MFA in Experimental and Documentary Arts program at Duke, the Documentary Fieldwork seminar is an opportunity for students to create a new body of documentary work, in a sense to define what they mean by documentary work through their own artistic practice. This new work—presented at the end of the […]


Triangle-Area Undergrads: Apply by February 15 for Summer Documentary Fieldwork Awards

Triangle-Area Undergrads: Apply by February 15 for Summer Documentary Fieldwork Awards

Established in 1990 by the Center for Documentary Studies, the John Hope Franklin Student Documentary Awards go to undergraduates attending North Carolina’s Triangle-area universities to help them conduct intensive summer-long documentary fieldwork projects, for which they receive up to $2,000. The awards are named for revered scholar John Hope Franklin, the late professor emeritus of history at Duke […]


Enjoy: Final Projects by Fall 2015 Certificate in Documentary Arts Grads

Enjoy: Final Projects by Fall 2015 Certificate in Documentary Arts Grads

On Friday, December 11, 2015, six Continuing Education students at the Center for Documentary Studies presented their final projects to the public and received their Certificate in Documentary Arts. Randy Benson taught the Final Project Seminar in which four of the students honed their projects for the night’s presentation. Lindsey Phillips worked remotely with instructor Simone Keith […]


Capturing Club: CDS Undergraduate Class Website Showcases Student Work

Capturing Club: CDS Undergraduate Class Website Showcases Student Work

Capturing Club, a project showcasing photography and audio stories captured in partnership with Club Boulevard Humanities Magnet School, has published a website to showcase student work. The project is the result of an undergraduate class called Capturing Transience: Documentary Photography and the Digital Age taught by Susie Post-Rust. “Childhood is one of the most transient times […]


Registration Open for Spring 2016 Continuing Education Classes in the Documentary Arts

Registration Open for Spring 2016 Continuing Education Classes in the Documentary Arts

The Center for Documentary Studies offers Continuing Education classes year-round—in photography, video, audio, narrative writing, and other creative media. Registration is now open for Spring 2016 classes and workshops with a host of established, new, and online classes on offer, including a few hybrid on-site/online classes. A complete listing of all Spring 2016 courses as well as registration information […]


CDS Instructors and Alums Rake in Audio Doc Awards From Third Coast

CDS Instructors and Alums Rake in Audio Doc Awards From Third Coast

Have you heard? Four instructors and alums of the Center for Documentary Studies Continuing Education program have crowded the awards field in Third Coast International Audio Festival’s recent Third Coast/Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition. Out of nine overall winners, CDS instructors Lauren Spohrer and Phoebe Judge (of the popular podcast Criminal) were recognized for their piece “695BGK“ and work by alums Briana Breen […]


Listen: Student Work from the 2016 Making It Sing Audio Institute

Listen: Student Work from the 2016 Making It Sing Audio Institute

In the first week of August 2016, eleven audio producers took part in the Making It Sing audio institute at the Center for Documentary Studies. Offered through the Continuing Education program, the institute was led by CDS audio program director John Biewen, longtime visiting instructor Shea Shackelford, and guest instructor Devon Taylor, producer of Radiotopia’s […]