Media Studies courses are a required part of the First Year and Intermediate School, providing students with the knowledge and skills associated with a wide range of contemporary design, communication and fabrication media. Studio-based courses offered to Second Year students are also open to participation by Third and Fourth Year students, while laboratory-based courses are open to students throughout the entire school. These weekly courses are taught by AA unit staff, the school's AV department, workshop and computing staff, as well as by invited outside architects, artists, media and other creative specialists. Each course focuses on the conceptual and technical aspects of a specified topic of design media, and emphasises the sustained development of a student's ability to use design techniques as a means for conceiving, developing and producing design projects and strategies. As digital design technologies have now matured as an integral part of architectural education, Media Studies works closely with the AA Computer Lab to provide concise one-day courses that cover the fundamentals of the most common computer applications, including 3D Modelling, Computer-Aided Drafting, Imaging, Publication, Digital Computation and Scripting, various Physics-Based Analyses and other relevant software. Together the many classes and special events comprising Media Studies expose students to the work of architects, artists and other practitioners, the innovative skills associated with traditional forms of architectural media and representation, and today's most experimental forms of information, communication and fabrication technologies. Media Studies works to integrate established techniques in design with the potential of progressive media and production methods.