Journalism Department Curriculum

Course Descriptions

 

These are descriptions of the courses offered by the journalism department. For current class times and CRN numbers, visit classfinder.

 

106 Writing Structure (2)

Analysis of and skill development in sentence structure, syntax, English grammar, mechanics, usage and punctuation as applied to journalistic writing.

106 Sample Syllabus

 

190 Introduction to Mass Media (5) (SSC GUR)

Introduction to basic issues and problems facing journalists and the public as recipients of mass media messages in national and international society; nature, theory and effects of communication; media systems, structure and support; world news flow; media controls; First Amendment rights; ethical considerations.

 

207 Newswriting (4) (BCOM GUR)

Writing for news media; clarity in use of language, style and punctuation; sentence and paragraph structure and organization of stories; credibility of information and news judgment; basic methods of researching and writing. Weekly news discussions based on a major national newspaper as one of the texts. Basic word processing skills required.

207 Sample Syllabus

AP Style Essentials

 

214 Newspaper Staff (4)

Prereq: sophomore status; JOUR 207.

Participation on the staff of the university newspaper. Write articles and take photographs for the university’s newspaper and online edition. Gather and edit audio and video, create multimedia packages for the newspaper’s Web site. Also includes lecture.

Western Front Sample Syllabus

 

305 Photojournalism (4)

Prereq: JOUR 207, basic knowledge of photography and permission of instructor.

Introduction to news photography and its application in print and online; composing effective news pictures; essentials of processing for print publication and multi-media projects; picture editing and layout; professional ethics and the law.

305 Sample Syllabus

 

307 Reporting (5)

Prereq: B- or better in JOUR 207.

Interviewing, news coverage of community news sources with emphasis on public affairs reporting. Introduction to computerized database reporting and investigative techniques. Writing for news media.

 

309 Editing (5)

Prereq: JOUR 207; JOUR 307 or 380.

News copy desk operations; editing; headline writing; dummying; page make-up and news graphics; and computerized editing.

309 Sample Syllabus

 

313 Newspaper Visual Storytellers (4)

Prereq: JOUR 214, 314 or 414 with a B- or better, instructor permission.

Participation as a visual storyteller for the university newspaper. May take photographs for the university’s newspaper, gather and edit audio and video, and/or create multimedia packages for the newspaper’s Web site. Also includes lecture but not writing articles. May not be taken concurrently with a staff or editing course. Repeatable up to 12 credits including original course.

 

314 Newspaper Staff (4)

Prereq: junior status; JOUR 207; JOUR 307 or 380.

Participation on the staff of the university newspaper. Write articles and take photographs for the university’s newspaper. Gather and edit audio and video, create multimedia packages for the newspaper’s Web site. Also includes lecture.

 

321 Periodical Staff (4) (WP-3)

Prereq: junior status; JOUR 207; one newspaper staff course.

Staff writers prepare and produce the twice-quarterly university periodical and its online edition under the direction of the editor-in-chief and editorial management staff; learn and practice querying story ideas, researching, reporting, writing and then assisting with production of the written and visual elements of the magazine, including online elements for the website. Writers will manage their own time outside of class to report, write and revise manuscripts, investing time appropriate to their task and their goals and to meet deadline, and work with the editorial management team on production issues. Repeatable to a maximum of 6 credits.

 

323 Magazine Visual Storyteller (4)

Prereq: JOUR 321 or JOUR 421 with a B- or better, instructor permission. May not be taken concurrently with a JOUR staff course.

Magazine visual storytellers help prepare and produce the twice-quarterly university periodical and its online edition under the direction of the editor-in-chief and editorial management staff and create or assist with production of the visual elements of the magazine, including online elements for the website. Visual storytellers will manage their own time outside of class to take photographs, develop ideas for online content, create video or audio segments, and design online visual elements, investing time appropriate to their tasks and their goals and to meet deadlines, and work with the editorial management team on production issues. Students will work independently and with writers on specific stories. Repeatable to a maximum of 8 credits including original course.

 

330 Principles of Public Relations (4)

Prereq: JOUR 207 or permission of instructor.

Methods, tools and media used in planning and developing strategic public relations programs for all organizations. Practicing research methods, writing news releases, understanding effective communications strategies and integrated marketing communications, analyzing case studies, exploring relations with the press and developing creative public relations campaigns.

 

340 History of U.S. Journalism (4) (HUM GUR)

Prereq: junior status.

An examination of how U.S. journalism has influenced U.S. history from the works that inspired the revolution to the coverage of 9/11. A poster presentation offers students the opportunity to research the role of the news media in shaping a specific event or issue in U.S. history.

 

346 Intro to Visual Journalism (5)

Prereq: JOUR 207, 305, 309.

Critical and analytical exploration of the visual aspects of storytelling in print and online media; research on the cultural history and news media application of photography, infographics, typography, audio and video clips. Consideration of special properties, demands, and aspects of visuals as they are used to enhance and augment written news narratives. Application of these principles through projects that produce still and video photography, audio, informational graphics and typography to accompany written narrative.

346 Sample Syllabus

 

350 Mass Media Law (5)

Prereq: junior status.

Rights and legal restrictions on freedom of the press; constitutional guarantees as interpreted through the courts; libel, privacy, access to information, censorship, contempt, agency regulations. Issues applying to various forms of mass media, including print, broadcast and online publishing.

 

351 Mass Media Ethics (4)

Prereq: JOUR 207.

Introduction to ethical theories; examination of professional codes and standards; changing roles of the news media that affect moral reasoning for the journalist; responsibilities of the media in a world of instant communication and reaction; historical perspectives through case studies; use of reporting, editing and advocacy methods and formation of news values in print, broadcast and online media. Research paper examines ethics topic.

351 Sample Syllabus

 

360 Study of Literary Journalism (3)

Prereq: junior status.

Reading and critiquing texts that use literary techniques to enhance journalism. Studying the history of literary journalism and its impact on the field.

 

365 Publications - Concepts to Design (5)

This course is designed for those who are interested in exploring magazines and who may be considering a career as a magazine writer, editor or designer. The course provides an introduction to magazine publishing, including a historical overview of the magazine industry, its evolution and its place in a consumer society. We will survey current consumer publications and will analyze what makes the best ones distinctive and valuable. The course will focus on how magazines are conceived, organized, edited, financed, produced and distributed. Based on this background, students will build a prospectus for a magazine of their own design which will answer the questions posed by backers: What is the editorial style, who is the audience, how will it be financed, who are the advertisers, what is the circulation, what is the character of its design, what makes it unique. The class also will address the growth of online publishing.
 

370 Digital Media in Journalism (5)

Prereq: JOUR 307, 309 and 346.

Practice and study of journalism online. Examines how technological innovations are changing the ways print and broadcast journalists do their jobs, as well as the social, economic, ethical and legal implications of these changes. Students will learn to report, edit and design in an online environment.

 

375 Diversity, Mass Media and Social Change (4) (BCGM GUR)

Uses an intersectional framework of race/ethnicity, gender, class and other demographic groups to examine how mass media cover social change and affect their audiences.

 

380 Advanced Public Relations Writing and Techniques (5)

Prereq: JOUR 207 and 330.

Intensive focus on the processes involved in writing for an organization’s diverse publics, including news releases, op-eds, broadcast material, speeches, organizational memos and proposals, employer publications, backgrounders, features and Web sites. Students gain hands-on experience by applying these skills and processes through service-learning by writing for community organizations. Cannot be taken at the same time as JOUR 309.

 

390 The News Process (4)

Prereq: junior status required.

Critical examination of current news issues and decision-making processes through visiting news media professionals, readings and discussion. Repeatable to 8 credits with various topics.

 

404 Feature Writing (4)

Prereq: JOUR 307 or 380 and major status.

In-depth article, column and persuasive writing; development of ideas, gathering of materials and writing; special attention to individual interests; exploration of freelance writing markets.

 

407 Public Relations Case Studies (4)

Prereq: JOUR 207 and 330; JOUR 380, and major status.

A study of the functions, processes and problems in the practice of public relations, paying particular attention to media relations, public relations theory and critical thinking. Students examine various genres of public relations, as well as exploring how theory, research, strategic objectives and evaluation contribute to successful campaigns. Students learn about creating successful public relations campaigns through critically analyzing case studies of both local companies and national programs and then applying what they learned to create a new proposal or campaign.

 

413 Newspaper Visual Storytellers (4)

Prereq: Junior status; JOUR 214, 314 or 414 with a B- or better, instructor permission.

Participation as a visual storyteller for the university newspaper. May take photographs for the university’s newspaper, gather and edit audio and video, and/or create multimedia packages for the newspaper’s Web site. Also includes lecture but not writing articles. May not be taken concurrently with a staff or editing course. Repeatable up to 12 credits including original course.

 

414 Newspaper Staff (4)

Prereq: JOUR 207; JOUR 307 or 380; and JOUR 314.

Participation on the staff of the university newspaper. Writing articles and taking photographs for the university’s newspaper and online edition. Gathering and editing audio and video, creating multimedia packages for the newspaper’s Web site. Also includes lecture. Repeatable to a maximum of 12 credits.

 

415 Newspaper Editorship (4)

Prereq: JOUR 207; JOUR 307 or 380; one newspaper staff course, and permission of instructor.

Publication editing and development; assigning and editing news stories, photographs and multimedia projects; creating content for the publication’s Web site; creating and implementing budget and advising on budget decisions; acting as mentor to assigned staff members; holding office hours and meeting outside scheduled class time; preparing reports and presentations for class and instructor; assisting with and taking part in workshops; office management and security; learning personnel communication skills; using advanced publication software and technology; making self-evaluation and production reports for adviser. Repeatable to a maximum of 16 credits. This course may not be taken concurrently with a staff course.

 

421 Periodical Staff (4) (WP-3)

Prereq: Senior status; JOUR 207; JOUR 307 or 380; and one newspaper staff course.

Staff writers prepare and produce the twice-quarterly university periodical and its online edition under the direction of the editor-in-chief and editorial management staff; learn and practice querying story ideas, researching, reporting, writing and then assisting with production of the written and visual elements of the magazine, including online elements for the website. Writers will manage their own time outside of class to report, write and revise manuscripts, investing time appropriate to their task and their goals and to meet deadline, and work with the editorial management team on production issues. Repeatable to a maximum of 9 credits.

 

422 Periodical Editorship (4)

Prereq: JOUR 207; JOUR 307 or 380; one periodical staff course, and permission of instructor.

Print publication and online publication editing and development; hiring and supervising an editorial management team to produce the twice-quarterly university periodical and its online edition; acting as mentor to assigned staff members; holding office hours and meetings outside scheduled class time; preparing reports and presentations for class and instructor; assisting with and taking part in workshops; managing the publication office; reviewing and staying within budget; learning personnel communication skills; using advanced publication software and technology; making self-evaluation and production reports for adviser. This course may not be taken concurrently with a periodical staff course. Repeatable to a maximum of 12 credits.

 

423 Magazine Visual Storytelling (4)

Prereq: JOUR 321 or JOUR 421 with a B- or better, instructor permission. May not be taken concurrently with a JOUR staff course.

Magazine visual storytellers help prepare and produce the twice-quarterly university periodical and its online edition under the direction of the editor-in-chief and editorial management staff and create or assist with production of the visual elements of the magazine, including online elements for the website. Visual storytellers will manage their own time outside of class to take photographs, develop ideas for online content, create video or audio segments, and design online visual elements, investing time appropriate to their tasks and their goals and to meet deadlines, and work with the editorial management team on production issues. Students will work independently and with writers on specific stories. Repeatable to a maximum of 8 credits including original course.

 

430 Field Internships (6)

Prereq: For the news/editorial sequence — JOUR 207, 307, 309, 350, 351, two newspaper staff courses and major status

For the public relations sequence — JOUR 207, 309, 330, 350, 351, 380, one newspaper staff course and major status

For the visual journalism sequence — JOUR 207, 305,307, 309, 346, 350, 351, one newspaper staff course and major status

Supervised field work on newspapers, magazines, radio and TV stations, public relations and advertising agencies, or other appropriate professional situations. S/U grading. More information.

 

440 Public Relations Research & Campaigns (5)

Prereq: JOUR 330, 380, and major status.

Study and practice in research methods, theory, implementation and evaluation of effective programs of communication. Students work in teams to establish a firm theoretical and research-based approach to planning an effective public relations campaign for a community organization.

 

446 Advanced Visual Journalism (5)

Prereq: JOUR 346, 370 and major status.

In-depth exploration of concepts and practices explored in JOUR 346. Students work in teams to apply theories, conduct research, analyze data and apply design and software skills to produce visual and verbal elements for advanced projects.

 

450 Advanced Reporting (5)

Prereq: Jour 307, 350, 351 and major status.

Survey and application of advanced reporting techniques, including computer-assisted reporting, and the use of the Internet, to produce news stories of depth, complexity and appeal.

 

460 Special Reporting Project (4)

Prereq: JOUR 307 or 380; JOUR 350 or 351; two staff courses and major status.

Students write about and photograph people who have ethnic, national, environmental or cultural backgrounds different from the dominant society; sensitivity to other cultural traditions; advanced reporting and writing skills.

 

480 Senior Seminar (5) (WP-3)

Prereq: Jour 350 and 351 and major status.

Examines research methods in and theories of mass communication in the context of the practice of journalism and public relations in a democratic society. A research paper provides students with practice applying specific methods and theories to explore contemporary issues in journalism and public relations.

480 Sample Syllabus