Program Dates, Times & Details

Session Dates

Session I: July 6 – 31, 2020
Duration: 4 weeks
Live (Synchronous) Session Times: Thursdays, 6:30 – 8 p.m. EST
Cost: $344
Course Number: 72726

Dates & Deadlines  Registration Information

Course Description:

This course draws from the popular “Esports and Media” course which is offered at Syracuse University during the academic year and does not require any background or prior knowledge.

We will explore the rapidly growing world of esports and trace the historical roots of competitive video games to the contemporary scene’s multibillion-dollar industry. Esports are examined through multiple lenses to understand the many ways in which esports intersect with media and broadcasting. The history, technologies, and business models behind esports are discussed, along with the roles of teams, leagues, and broadcast platforms.

We will discuss the ways in which media and broadcasting have been shaped by esports, but also how they themselves have shaped esports. This is reflected in the ways in which platforms like Twitch and Mixer have emerged to livestream content and competitions, as well as how traditional broadcasting platforms like ESPN and leagues such as the NBA have adopted esports into their existing programming and structures.

We will consider different facets of the ways in which esports and culture are in conversation with one another. This includes looking at the earliest competitive video games to the rise of esports in South Korea via games such as StarCraft (Blizzard, 1998). We will examine the growth of esports in the United States and Europe and the legacy of games like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (Valve, 2012). We will also address enormously popular games like League of Legends (Riot Games, 2009), Fortnite (Epic Games, 2017), and Overwatch (Blizzard, 2016), along with newer games including Apex Legends (Electronic Arts/Respawn Entertainment, 2019).

Program & Technology Requirements

Required Technology

  • Reliable internet access
  • Minimally, a laptop with webcam and audio. (Best would be a monitor connected to laptop or desktop)


Chris Hanson

After completing a bachelor’s degree in media studies at Carleton College, Hanson worked for a number of years in video game, esports, and software development, and later assisted with the planning and production of an educational series and content for PBS. Hanson received his master’s degree and PhD in critical studies at the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts. His first book, Game Time: Understanding Temporality in Video Games (Indiana University Press, 2018), examines the function of time in digital and analog games. He is currently completing a second book about game designer Roberta Williams.

Hanson teaches courses in game studies, game and esports, industry studies, television studies, genre, and emerging media. He serves as the faculty advisor for the university’s Gaming Club and Esports Club, and assisted with the planning and development of Syracuse University’s esports room and the Digital Scholarship Space in Bird Library.

Olivia Stomski

Olivia Stomski completed her bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism at S.I. Newhouse School of Communications at Syracuse University. Before becoming the director of the Newhouse Sports Media Center and professor of practice, Olivia started her career at Fox Sports West Los Angeles. She worked in several departments at the network, including promos and marketing, live game, studio and long form content creation.

Most recently, she served as the executive producer at ProAngle Media where she oversaw, managed, produced and directed over 100 live events a year across the country, lead the production team and worked with executives and personnel from several networks and professional collegiate teams. Stomski is currently a freelance live game producer for ESPN and Fox Sports. She teaches courses in sports production, esports and media, sports content creation and storytelling.