The study of film as one of the 20th and now the 21st century’s most important and influential forms of artistic expression is Jennifer Townsend's major area of teaching and research. Film is a living art, constantly changing, evolving and adapting in response to the needs and demands of a global audience. Her teaching and research explores a variety of critical and theoretical approaches in order to examine and critique the social, political, economic, historical, cultural, artistic, and technical aspects of film. Introduction to Film and Documentary Film emphasize meaning-making and authorship/ownership in an age of social media and digital technologies while Science Fiction Film explores the often contentious relationship between human existence and technology, including SF film’s own history as the cinema of attractions and spectacle.
In teaching composition, the courses are designed to be responsive to the research and writing needs and interests of the students as well as their future discourse communities both professional and academic. The profound impact of social media and digital technologies on the art and practice of written and spoken communication genres is a key conceptual area of both teaching and research. Reflection, metacognition, and transference of skills are embedded into traditional writing and research
assignments such as a research paper or PowerPoint presentation as well as the construction of digital genres such as a web page or video game.
Townsend teaches film studies and composition in the Liberal Arts department at CCS and in the English Department at Wayne State University. At CCS, Townsend teaches film courses including Introduction to Film, Science Fiction Film and Documentary Film. She has also taught composition courses including The Art of Argument, Technical Writing, and Writing for Art and Design.
At Wayne State University, Townsend teaches Introduction to Film and Intermediate Composition. She has also taught Introduction to College Writing, Introduction to Fiction, Project 350 (a college prep summer course for at-risk students that emphasized individual mentoring and guidance), and Chicano-Boriqua Studies in Composition (a special section of College Writing that emphasized the deep cultural roots of Hispanic students as a way to foster and promote academic success).
- MA & BA, Wayne State University
- Adjunct Faculty