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Professor:Amy Tierney
  • Online
Course Length:
  • 5 Week


Photograph of Photographer Amy Tierney holding a camera

Greetings!  I am Amy Tierney, an adjunct Photography Instructor and working professional photographer.  I welcome you to get to know more about my work and the skills I bring to this class by visiting my website

I am teaching this class because I want you to be skilled and ready to work at a professional studio and/or on a  photo set.

I am so glad that you are interested in setting yourself up for success.

Course Description

Photo 120 introduces photo studio and set etiquette first by understanding how to be best prepared when working as a photo assistant on a photographer’s set, then by identifying the equipment and safety protocols required while also understanding clear communication standards,  as well as time management and coordination strategies (via current studio management apps).


The course will require reading course materials, participating in discussion assignments, identifying equipment through visual exercise assignments, quizzes and writing a final essay (or interview with a professional studio photographer).  

You will find this photo studio etiquette class useful if you:

  • Want to hone your communication and time management skills as an assistant or studio manager via apps and approaches that actual studios use
  • Want to learn the equipment safety steps required to assist
  • Want to learn about current communication on set
  • Want to expand your knowledge of the ethical standards of photo studio or set
  • Want to work in a studio or on a set


This is an asynchronous course (self-paced, online distance learning course).  There will be no “live, online synchronous” class meetings via Zoom or other online digital conference.  There will be three recorded presentation videos which you will be required to watch and then complete a discussion assignment.  There will be asynchronous online discussion critiques so you get to know and learn from fellow students’ work. 


What to Expect in this Course

This is a five (5) week class that meets asynchronously via online distance learning beginning Monday, August 28, 2023 – September, 30 2023, Saturday; there are no online synchronous class meetings, i.e. Zoom. 

The amount of hours required averages 10 hours per week – 4 for reviewing per week and 6 for accomplishing assignments and quizzes per week.  You will need to calendar yourself successfully to read course materials, watch instructor presentation videos, participate in discussions (group critique), complete assignments, complete quizzes and create your final project.

Upon successful completion, students will have a better understanding of photo studio / set etiquette by expanding their knowledge of how a professional studio and set functions, the various tools (equipment: lights, stands, expendables) of the practice, a developed critical assessment technique to use when problem solving, communication skills to build rapport and strategize project management, and a final essay (or interview with a professional photographer) which exhibits understanding of the key objectives outlined for this course.

Technology required:

  1. Working WIFI
  2. Daily access to a computer
  3. CANVAS application –  working knowledge to see and deliver assignments
  4. Word processing application – eg. Microsoft Word


Types of Assessments

The final grade will be derived from the following sources:

1. Discussion and Critique:  Students will be required to show their own work and effectively comment on the work of others.  For critiques you will be asked to review peers' work with at least 1 pro, 1 con, and 1 alternative approach about the work being presented.  These are graded.

2. Assignments and Exercises: Students will have a visual assignment that will graded on how well the specific problem is solved. Each assignment (or exercise), unless otherwise noted, will be given a numerical grade.

3. Quizzes and Exams: Students will be given several quizzes relating to the presentations and demonstrations plus a final essay (or an interview with a professional photographer, student’s choice). 

4. Final Project: Students will submit a final essay (or a written interview that includes some still photographs or short video clips with a professional photographer)

Types of Assessments for this Class:

Class and lab participation:  Students should come to class labs prepared. For critiques, each student will be required to reply online via their Canvas account to at least 2 other students’ work with five fully written sentences per reply, specifically critiquing technical skill, composition and actual real world news relevance of the photos presented.

Assignments and Exercises:  Visual and written assignments uploaded to your Canvas portfolio are graded on how well the specific problems have been solved along with written technical notes, explanations/captions/ etc uploaded to your Canvas portfolio after the presentation. 

Final Project: Students will submit a final essay, or a written interview with a working professional photographer that includes some still photographs and/or short video clips.  It will be the student’s choice regarding which of these two types of final projects they choose to submit.

Textbook Information


There is no required textbook for the course; however there are required readings.


­­­­­This Photo 120 course will have required reading and will be located as links within your Canvas assignments.

Other Relevant Course Information

More information about the course will be detailed in the class syllabus, which you will find when you log into the course shell the week before the class begins. In the meantime, if you have any questions about the course, please do not hesitate to contact me. I look forward to starting this class with you very soon!

Additional Resources


This course can be accessed on the first day of class via Canvas at Log into Canvas using your CanyonsID single sign-on:

  • CanyonsID Username is your COC student email address (Ex:
  • CanyonsID Password is your COC student email password

Please visit the Get to Know Your Online Classroom page for help logging into Canvas and for tips on using Canvas and Zoom. Canvas Chat Support is also available 24/7 for any Canvas related issues.

Online Education

Check out the Online Education website for more information on a variety of topics that can help you be a successful online student such as: exam proctoring, learning styles, computer skills, and tips for student success. If this is your first online course, feel free to take our online learning readiness assessment to assess your skills.

The Learning Center (TLC)

The TLC provides FREE online tutoring resources to COC students!

Academic Accommodation Center (AAC)

College of the Canyons AAC provides educational services and access for eligible students with documented disabilities who intend to pursue coursework at COC. A variety of programs and services are available which afford eligible students with disabilities the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of the college programs and activities through appropriate and reasonable accommodations. For more information on their services visit the Academic Accomodation Center website.

Online Counseling

The Counseling Department offers appointments online. You can schedule an appointment by visiting the Online Counseling website. Counselors can help you map out a plan to reach your educational goals as well as advise you on course selection and registration.

Management of Stress and Mental Health

Often the pressure on our students is very strong, involving academic commitments, relationships, outside jobs and family pressure to name a few. The staff and faculty of College of the Canyons are here to see you succeed academically and care about your emotional and physical health. You can learn more about the broad range of confidential student services, including counseling and mental health services available on campus by visiting the Student Health & Wellness Center in the Student Services Building (across from the bookstore). The phone number is 661-362-3259 that you can call 24/7. You can also e mail for an appointment at At the Canyon Country Campus the Health Center will be in the new Student Services Building.

Also, the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline number is now 988. All students at COC are encouraged to enter that phone number in their cells. You can call it when you, or someone you know, is having thoughts of suicide or is in severe distress.

You can also now use the Crisis Text Line: Just text "Courage" to 741741. Someone will get back to you immediately. Its free, 24/7, and confidential.

Veterans Resource Center

The College of the Canyons Veterans Resource Center is a department within the Student Services Division at the college, created to help veterans and veteran dependents with applying to College of the Canyons, enrolling in classes, and requesting VA Education or Vocational Benefits. For more information please visit the Veterans Resource Center website, email or phone (661) 362-3469.


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Last updated: 07/24/2023 Sub#: 1610