The Journalism Program: Courses

Introduction to Media
JOU 1500
/ 3 credits / Every year
Designed to familiarize students with different kinds of media, explain the roles they play in society, and provide a firsthand experience in seeing how they operate. Students witness the workings of radio stations, television stations, newspaper plants, and magazine productions. Field trips are required for all students.

History of Journalism
JOU 2150
/ 3 credits / Spring
Covers the history of journalism with an emphasis on American journalism after 1900. Students examine the objectives of journalism, styles of writing and coverage, and the shape and impact of the industry in various periods. Recent developments are studied with an eye toward how they fit into historical contexts. Also offered as HIS 2150.

Journalism I
JOU 2515
/ 4 credits / Every semester
This survey course covers basic skills, which include news reporting and writing. Students are also introduced to the history, traditions, practices, laws, and ethics of journalism in the U.S.

Journalism II
JOU 2915
/ 4 credits / Every semester
This course builds on skills developed in JOU 2515 and includes basic feature reporting, copyediting, and layout. In addition to covering campus events, students may also cover specialized beats like local government, the New York arts scene, and environmental issues. Students who complete JOU 2515 and 2915 may be eligible for one or two semester-long internships at local publications.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515

Reporting the Region
JOU 3020
/ 4 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly, summer, in France)
Students explore the region to produce journalistic reports that include writing and photography. Assignments include stories on challenges facing a French family, implications of a French political issue, a social issue, and a travel piece. The goal is for students to write as a foreign correspondent, conveying the community’s views, struggles, sights, and sensations to an audience back home.

Through the Lens: Photo in France
JOU 3025
/ 4 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly, summer, in France)
Students are introduced to documentary techniques as they explore the region through their digital cameras. Topics include environmental portraiture, landscape, and feature photography, among others. France’s rich contributions to documentary photography and the “decisive moment” are discussed. Students shoot and produce a photo story on the community, culture, and environment of the region. Open to beginning and advanced photography students.

Race, Gender, and the Media
JOU 3040
/ 4 credits / Every year
Examines the relationship between the media and social constructions of race, gender, and class, both in the U.S. and within a global context. Topics include biases and assumptions in print and visual media; representations of masculinity and femininity; and the media’s role in creating and reinforcing ideas, symbols, and ideologies within cultures. Text analysis includes newspapers, magazine articles, cartoons, television, movies, and advertising.

Freedom and the Media
JOU 3080
/ 4 credits / Every year
The idea and practice of free speech and press are examined in relation to media, including print, broadcast, and online expression. Ethical issues surrounding modern media are also explored through source readings and lectures.

The Art of the Interview
JOU 3090
/ 4 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Students build on skills acquired in previous journalism classes as they explore in depth the various interviewing techniques for print, broadcast, and online media. Students critique each other’s work and critically dissect published articles and broadcast interviews. They report and write their own in-depth profiles with an eye toward publication in professional or student publications or broadcast outlets.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515 and 2915

JOU 3100
/ 4 credits / Every year
A basic course in the use of photography for journalistic purposes. Topics include how to shoot news events, feature photo shoots, cropping, and the use of computer technology.

First-Person Reporting
JOU 3120
/ 4 credits / Alternate years (Spring)
Students build on the skills acquired in JOU 2515 and 2915 as they discuss, critique, write, revise, and edit first-person reporting. This is a writing-intensive course; students work on developing a point of view and voice and craft material that resonates with the reader. They are also expected to be active peer-editors of their classmates’ work.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515 and 2915

Introduction to Broadcast Journalism
JOU 3150
/ 4 credits / Every semester
Designed to familiarize students with the basics of broadcast journalism, including writing for broadcast and techniques of broadcasting. Students have access to a campus television station, where they are introduced to the techniques and methods of broadcasting.

Feature Writing
JOU 3200
/ 4 credits / Every year
An advanced course focusing on longer and more complex reporting and writing techniques for newspapers, magazines, and other types of publications.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515 and 2915

The Art of Sportswriting
JOU 3220
/ 4 credits / Alternate years (Spring)
In this overview of national sports journalism, the craft is explored through extensive reading of eminent sports writers and the history of the art, as well as intensive writing. Special emphasis is placed on thorough reporting, the craft of interviewing, writing on deadline, and producing prose written in a distinctive voice.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515 and 2915

The Beat of Music Journalism
JOU 3230
/ 4 credits / Alternate years (Fall)
Explores the craft of journalistic writing about various musical genres, including rock, hip-hop, punk, heavy metal, classical, R&B, and jazz. Readings include notable works of music journalism in print and on the Web. Students write articles on the genres of particular interest to them. This course is suitable for both specialized (journalism and music) and general audiences.

Multiple Platform Writing
JOU 3250
/ 4 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
News, regardless of how it is distributed, is migrating to the Web. Building on the lessons of JOU 2515 and 2915, this course introduces techniques of writing for radio and television news and using audio and video to tell stories. It also explores the new language and iconography of Web-based content.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515 and 2915

Environmental Journalism
JOU 3260
/ 4 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
In this introduction to the issues associated with reporting on the environment, students gain an understanding of the science behind local and global environmental issues and the journalistic approaches necessary to illuminate those issues. The course grapples with the difficulties inherent in translating scientific information for mass audiences. Also offered as ENV 3260.
Prerequisite: Junior standing and either ENV 1500 or JOU 2515 and 2915

Advanced Broadcast News
JOU 3310
/ 4 credits / Every semester
Expands the foundation skills learned in JOU 3150. Topics include advanced broadcast writing, filming, and editing. Students produce a news/feature television program at a working television station. Also offered as CIN 3310.
Prerequisite: JOU 3150 and permission of instructor

The Literature of Journalism
JOU 3374
/ 4 credits / Spring
Students look at the evolution of long-form journalism since the 1960s, its triumphs and shortcomings, and its future in the digital age. Works include Capote’s In Cold Blood, the magazine writing of Gay Talese and Elizabeth Gilbert, and the documentary Hoop Dreams. Students also examine journalistic fiction, from Norman Mailer to the films of Sidney Lumet and comedy of Jon Stewart. Also offered as LIT 3374.

Multimedia Tools
JOU 3500
/ 3 credits / Spring
An introduction to issues and developments in multimedia journalism. Students critique and create stories for publication online, learning how to assemble story packages that combine media elements, including text, video, audio, and images. Includes some exploration of the use of social media and other techniques to promote stories.

News Editing
JOU 3600
/ 4 credits / Alternate years
Covers the art of editing, from breaking news to features in special styles. Students work intensively on improving writing, expanding knowledge of word crafting, and producing tight prose. The relationship between reporters, editors, and decisions about news judgment is examined. An essential course for writing-based careers.
Prerequisite: JOU 2915

Reviewing the Contemporary Novel
JOU 3635
Refer to LIT 3635 in Literature Courses: 3000–3999 for description.

Criticism/Reviewing Workshop
JOU 3780
Refer to THP 3780 in Theatre and Performance Courses (Conservatory of Theatre Arts) for description.
Prerequisite: JOU 2915

Junior Seminar in Journalism
JOU 3880
/ 2 credits / Spring
Students examine issues in journalism. Required for journalism majors.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515 and 2915

Covering the Arts
JOU 4010
/ 4 credits / Alternate years (Fall)
Using the College’s wide array of cultural activities as material, students learn to bring immediacy and depth to their reporting on entertainment and the arts. The course begins with a study of the form and function of various disciplines as a basis for this reporting.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515 and 2915

International Issues Reporting
JOU 4020
/ 4 credits / Alternate years (Fall)
Examines the methods of international affairs journalism, how international issues and organizations are covered, and the innovative ways in which local reporters can reach out to bring the world closer to their readers. Students produce stories that illuminate connections between nearby neighborhoods and faraway lands. Limited to students who have declared a major or minor in journalism.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515 and 2915

Investigative Reporting
JOU 4150
/ 4 credits / Fall
Students are introduced to and make use of the tools of investigative reporting. In-depth reporting and the use of multiple sources are stressed. Students learn how to research documents, official records, and databases to produce investigative pieces of publishable quality.
Prerequisite: JOU 2915

Broadcast Writing
JOU 4320
/ 4 credits / Special topic (offered irregularly)
Writing for broadcast requires advanced producing skills. This advanced course focuses on the graphics, rolling visuals, and sound structure that illuminate the scripted language written for radio and television. Class exercises and field assignments provide opportunities to develop and practice these skills, and current events frame classroom discussions.
Prerequisite: JOU 2515 and 2915

Senior Project in Journalism
JOU 4990
/ 4 credits (per semester) / Every semester
Required for journalism majors in the senior year. Two semesters (8 credits total).

For updates during 2013–2015, please visit

Arrow up icon | << School of Humanities home