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Journalism

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Mike Curb College of Arts, Media, and Communication

Staff

  • Blasco Felipe
  • Keith Goldstein
  • Lincoln Harrison
  • Joanna Hernandez
  • Melissa Lalum
  • Allen Lin
  • Heather Powell
  • Susie Torres

Faculty

  • Lori Baker-Schena, José Luis Benavides, David Blumenkrantz, Linda Bowen, Marcy De Veaux, Taehyun Kim, Jim Hill, Kent Kirkton, Rick Marks, Jessica Retis-Rivas, Melissa Wall

Faculty Emeritus

  • Susan Henry, Jerome Jacobs, DeWayne B. Johnson,

Programs

Undergraduate:

  • B.A., Journalism
  • Minor in Journalism
  • Minor in Spanish-Language Journalism

Graduate:

  • M.A., Mass Communication

The Major

The B.A. in Journalism is designed for those who seek careers in print and online newspaper/magazine editorial work and photojournalism/videography; television and radio news; or public relations.

Accreditation

The Department is accredited by the National Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications.

Department Programs

The Department of Journalism is a member of the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communication. Affiliated with the Department of Journalism are news operations of the campus-based FM radio station (KCSN), the Department magazine (Scene), the student newspapers (Daily Sundial and El Nuevo Sol), television news shows (“Valley View” and “On Point”).

Each journalism major is required to complete a collateral field in another discipline such as history, political science or sociology. A foreign language is strongly recommended.

In addition to meeting the core requirements in journalism, students take courses from the following areas of emphasis:

  • Broadcast Journalism: 315; 325; 335; 415; 445; 395B; 410 or 435; 2-units of Upper Division electives.
  • Magazine Journalism: 310; 330; 331; 397B; 460; 410 or 495A-Z; 4-units of Upper Division electives.
  • Newspaper Journalism: 310; 330; 331; 397B; 410 or 494A-Z;
  • 7-units of Upper Division electives.
  • Photojournalism: ART 250; 350; 450; 455; 331; 397B; ART 353 or ART 355 or ART 455A.
  • Public Relations: 310; 331; 340; 341; 440; 398B; 3-units of Upper Division electives
  • General: 310; 330; 395B or 397B or 398B;12-units of Upper Division electives.

National accrediting standards require a major to take a minimum of 80 units of the 120 required for graduation outside of Journalism/ Mass Communication. Of these 80 units, 65 must be in the liberal arts, sciences or humanities. A minimum of 37 units in journalism is required for the major. Transfer students may count 15 lower division units toward the 120-unit requirement.

Academic Advisement

Journalism majors at both the undergraduate and graduate levels are assigned an advisor at the time of entry into the Department. Advisors have regularly scheduled office hours for advisement purposes. Advisement is required of all majors each semester.

Student Learning Outcomes of the Undergraduate and Graduate Programs

The Department of Journalism strives to prepare its students to become well-educated, principled citizens who are capable of initiating careers as skilled journalists, public relations practitioners and other related communication professionals. The Department will help students to achieve the following objectives by the end of their program of study:

  • 1. Attain competency in writing basics such as grammar and punctuation, word usage and spelling, sentence and story structure and journalistic style;
  • 2. Attain competency in the gathering and critical analysis of information using such techniques as interviewing, observation and researching primary and secondary sources.
  • 3. Acquire expertise in thinking critically and creatively, while exercising news judgment, the organization and presentation of information in multiple journalistic forms (i.e., print, visual and electronic, and public relations).
  • 4. Develop an ethical basis for making journalistic and public relations decisions;
  • 5. Develop flexibility in working in evolving mass communication media and environments using a variety of technologies and techniques;
  • 6. Understand the historical, theoretical, legal and societal contexts within which journalists and public relations practitioners work.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Arts Degree in Journalism

1. Lower Division Required Courses (11 Units):

  • JOUR 100 Mass Communication (3)
  • JOUR 110 Writing, Reporting, and Ethics I (3)
  • JOUR 210 Writing, Reporting, and Ethics II (3)
  • JOUR 250 Visual Communication (2)

2. Upper Division Required Courses (7 Units):

  • JOUR 400 Mass Communication Law and Ethics (3)
  • JOUR 498 Tutorial in Mass Communication (1)
Select at least one of the following (3 units):
  • JOUR 371 Women, Men and Media (3)
  • JOUR 372 Diversity and the Media (3)
  • JOUR 465 Mass Communication and Popular Culture (3)
  • JOUR 478 International News Media (3)
  • JOUR 480 History of the American News Media (3)
  • JOUR 585 Theory of Mass Communication (3)

3. Courses in Journalism (19 Units):

Depending on area of emphasis (see Department Programs) except repeat of JOUR 395AB, 397AB, 398AB, 498

4. Collateral Units (15 Units):

Upper Division courses in a collateral field approved in advance by advisor.

  • Total Units in the Major
  • 37
  • Collateral Field Units
  • 15
  • General Education
  • 48
  • Additional Units
  • 20
  • Total Units Required for a B.A. Degree
  • 120

Credential Information

Standard elementary and secondary teaching credentials can be obtained by completing a double major in a University-approved waiver program, such as English. For details on the Credential program see the Credentials section of this catalog or refer to the Index.

Minor in Journalism

1 Lower Division Required Courses (6 Units)

  • JOUR 100 Mass Communication (3)
  • JOUR 110 Writing, Reporting and Ethics I (3)

2. Upper Division Required Courses (5 Units)

  • JOUR 310 Writing, Reporting and Ethics III (3)
  • or JOUR 315 Reporting for Broadcast (3)
  • JOUR 330 Editing (2)

3. Electives in Journalism (7 Units)

(Approved in advance by advisor) (7)

  • Total Units Required for the Minor
  • 18

Minor in Spanish-Language Journalism

  • Advisor: José Luis Benavides
  • Manzanita Hall 210
  • (818) 677-3135

Minor Program

The Interdisciplinary Minor in Spanish-Language Journalism prepares students to report on Spanish-speaking and Latino communities, and to report on those communities for Spanish-language and English-language media. The minor helps students to better understand both Spanish-language and Latino media and Spanish-language and Latino communities.

Requirements for the Minor

The interdisciplinary minor in Spanish-Language Journalism consists of 24 units: six units of study designed specifically for the program’s core and 18 units in the four participating departments and programs. All students who minor in this program will take the two core courses: JOUR 374SLJ and JOUR 474SLJ. Students majoring in either Chicano Studies or Central American Studies will take nine units of Journalism and nine units of Spanish. Spanish majors will take nine units in either Chicano Studies or Central American Studies and nine units in Journalism. Journalism majors will take nine units in either Chicano Studies or Central American Studies and nine units in Spanish. Students who come to the program from other majors will be required to take the two core courses and six units in Journalism, six units in Spanish, and six units in either Chicano Studies or Central American Studies.

1. Lower Division Required Courses (15 Units)

  • JOUR 110 Writing, Reporting andEthics I (3)
  • JOUR 210 Writing, Reporting andEthics II (3)
  • SPAN 220A Intermediate Spanish I (3)
  • SPAN 220B Intermediate Spanish II (3)
Select one of the following two courses:
  • CHS 100 Chicana/o Culture (3)
  • CAS 100 Introduction to Central American Studies (3)

2. Upper Division Required Courses (6 Units)

  • JOUR 374SLJ News Environment (3)
  • JOUR 474SLJ Media Writing (3)

3. Upper Division Electives (9 Units)*

  • *NOTE: Journalism Majors who are also minors must complete 15 units in a combination of SPAN, CH S or CAS to fulfill the major’s collateral field requirement.
Select up to 9 units from the following courses
(for non-journalism majors)
  • JOUR 310 Writing, Reporting and Ethics III (3)
  • JOUR 315 Reporting for Broadcast (3)
  • JOUR 325 TV News Techniques (1)
  • JOUR 330 Editing (2)
  • JOUR 340 Principles of PR (3)
  • JOUR 335 Writing, Producing and Editing Television News (2)
  • JOUR 395A Broadcast News Practicum (1)
  • JOUR 397A Newspaper Practicum (1)
  • (for non-Spanish majors)
  • SPAN 306 Advanced Composition (3)
Select up to two of the following six courses
  • (for non-Chicano Studies majors)
  • CHS 345 History of Mexican Peoples (3)
  • CHS 360 Political Organizations of the Barrio (3)
  • CHS 361 Urbanization and the Chicana/o (3)
  • CHS 445 History of the Chicana/o (3)
  • CHS 460 Politics of the Chicana/o (3)
  • CHS 470 Cultural Differences and the Chicana/o (3)
  • or Select up to two of the following four courses (for non- Central American Studies majors)
  • CAS 310 Modern History of the Central American People (3)
  • CAS 311 The Central American Diaspora (3)
  • CAS 365 Changing Roles of Central American Women (3)
  • CAS 369 Contemporary Social and Religious Movements of
  • the Central American Peoples (3)

The Graduate Program

The graduate program in Mass Communication presupposes strong undergraduate preparation or equivalent professional experience in the mass media. The Master’s program calls for more intensive study, allows for development of individual professional skills and interests, focuses on evaluation of media performance and uses analytic and research techniques culminating in a thesis, graduate project or comprehensive written examination. Please see additional information regarding classification standing under Graduate Programs.

Requirements for the Master of Arts Degree

A. For Admission to Classified Graduate Status in the Program

  • 1. Bachelor’s degree: a major or minor in journalism, cinema and television arts, or completion of undergraduate courses assigned by the Graduate Admissions Advisor to complement other majors or professional experience.
  • 2. 3.0 (B) grade-point average in an undergraduate major and in all journalism courses taken. Candidates with outstanding professional records may seek, with substantial justification, an exception to this condition.
  • 3. 3.0 grade-point average for all undergraduate work and an above-average score on the verbal portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).
  • 4. Completion of general requirements for classified graduate status.
  • 5. Presentation of an autobiographical statement or resume containing a review of past educational and professional experience and comments about educational objectives and purposes.
  • 6. Two or three letters of recommendation.

B. For the Degree

A minimum of 30 units of approved graduate work is required for the degree. University regulations require that at least 18 units of the program shall be 600-level courses. Students applying more than 36 units of course work to their graduate program must take at least 50 percent of their courses in 600-level classes. The 30 minimum units shall be comprised of the following:

1. Required Seminars (9 Units)

  • MCOM 600 Seminar in Research Methods (3)
  • MCOM 630 Seminar in Analysis of Media Performance (3)
  • MCOM 690 Research Practicum (3)
Select at least two of the following (6 Units):
  • MCOM 610 Seminar in Specialized Reporting (3)
  • MCOM 620 Seminar in Media Criticism (3)
  • MCOM 693A-Z Selected Topics (3)
  • MCOM 694 Media Internship (1-6)
  • MCOM 699 Independent Study (1-6)

2. Required Courses (6 Units)

  • JOUR 400 Mass Communication Law and Ethics (3)
Plus one of the following:
  • JOUR 480 History of the American News Media (3)
  • JOUR 585 Theory of Mass Communication (3)

3. Electives (3 to 6 Units)

Courses in the Journalism Department at the 400-600 level not used to satisfy any of the requirements above, or courses in related departments as approved in advance by the Graduate Program Advisor.

  • JOUR 100 Mass Communication (3)
  • MCOM 698 Thesis or Graduate Professional Project (3-6)

Projects may include professionally oriented studies, video or audio tape documentaries of significance, or publishable works, such as investigative or in-depth articles. A research thesis may probe historical, legal, ethical or practical questions through surveys, library studies, or through original investigation.

  • or MCOM 697 Comprehensive Written Exam (1)

Written and oral examination in the major field (Mass Communication) and two specified fields selected with the approval of the graduate committee. One of those specialized fields may be outside the Department of Journalism.

Course List

JOUR 100. Mass Communication (3)
Not open to students with credit in CTVA 100. Survey and analysis of newspapers, books, magazines, radio, television, popular music, movies, advertising, public relations, Internet and emerging technologies. Examines media history and economics, as well as their roles, rights and impact in contemporary society. Particular emphasis on media literacy, critical thinking, research and writing. (Available for General Education, Lifelong Learning)
JOUR 110. Writing, Reporting and Ethics I (3)
Prerequisite: Typing proficiency; C or better in ENGL 155 or equivalent. Basic news gathering and writing. Includes interviewing, speech/meeting coverage, preparing news copy, traditional- and electronic-information gathering as applied to news decision-making. Introduces ethics as part of developing news judgment and learning the values practiced by professional journalists. Six hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 210. Writing, Reporting and Ethics II (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 110 or its equivalent. Continuation of news reporting with coverage of public affairs beats, including police, courts and government. Writing primarily in print, but also in broadcast news, online news and public relations formats. Ethics emphasized. Off-campus reporting and statistical journalism included. Six hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 250. Visual Communication (2)
Survey of the most significant techniques and examples of visual communication as employed by the mass media, including newspapers, magazines, television, and advertising. Discussion and demonstration of the tools used in analyzing visual communication. Illustrated lectures and experiences.
JOUR 310. Writing, Reporting and Ethics III (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 210. Reporting in-depth on social and political issues. Analysis and application of both classic and newer forms of explanatory storytelling with an emphasis on ethics. Feature and human interest writing. Using the Internet as a reporting tool.
JOUR 315. Reporting for Broadcast (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 210 or its equivalent. Gathering, reporting, writing, editing and presentation of news for broadcast. Out-of-class assignments, writing stories and editing newscasts for radio and television. Six hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 325. Television News Techniques (1)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 110 or its equivalent. Shooting and editing of video for television news stories. Coverage and editing of interviews, speeches, news conferences, hard news and features. Operation of cameras and editing equipment. Two hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 330. Editing (2)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 310. Copy and news editing, handling wire service stories, news evaluation and ethics. Four hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 331. Graphics (2)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 250. Principles of design and production techniques for print and on-line media. Uses of layout, typography and images for journalism and public relations. Four hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 335. Writing, Producing and Editing Television News (2)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 315 and 325. Television news writing, editing and producing. Developing news judgment, ethics, and newsroom skills. Editing and writing to video, anchoring. Students produce weekly newscasts, followed by discussion and critique. Four hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 340. Principles of Public Relations (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in ENGL 155 or its equivalent. Survey of public relations. Comparative studies of organization and function, techniques, public relations problems. The use of public relations in various organizations, educational institutions, government, corporations, financial institutions, public utilities, entertainment, labor. Regular written assignments are required.
JOUR 341. Writing and Editing for Public Relations (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 110 or its equivalent and JOUR 340. Provides students with an intensive experience writing for public relations. Students learn and employ a variety of public relations writing techniques for print, broadcast and new technologies. Examines and analyzes writing effectiveness in relevant public relations cases and current issues.
JOUR 350. Photojournalism (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in ART 250. Students are required to have their own cameras. Instruction in the production of black-and-white images for publication and in picture editing. Emphasis on the techniques and ethics involved in working with single images. Six hours of classroom and lab activity required
JOUR 371. Women, Men and Media (3)
Prerequisite: Completion of lower division writing requirement. Analysis of portrayals of women and men in the mass media and how media shape gender roles, expectations and stereotypes. Special attention to historical and contemporary contributions and responsibilities of women media professionals. Particular emphasis on applying critical thinking, research and writing skills to analyze media policies and practices, and on developing strategies that empower gender equality. (Available for General Education, Comparative Cultural Studies) (IC)
JOUR 372. Diversity and the Media (3)
Prerequisite: Completion of lower division writing requirement. Analysis of media portrayals and audience perceptions of racial, ethnic and sociopolitical groups, and the roles and responsibilities of mainstream and specialty media in a democratic society. Particular emphasis on applying critical thinking, research and writing skills to analyze media policies and practices and on developing strategies for multiculturalism. (Available for General Education, Comparative Cultural Studies) (IC)
JOUR SLJ 374. Spanish-Language News Environment (3)
The course is a survey of Latino-oriented and Spanish-language news media and of the news coverage of Latinos and Spanish-language communities. The course provides students with a general understanding of contemporary Spanish-speaking and Latino communities. Conducted in English.
JOUR SLJ 474. Spanish-Language Media Writing (3)
Prerequisite: Upper Division level of Spanish-language and Journalism 210, or instructor approval. The course will guide students in the methods and styles of reporting and writing in Spanish for print and broadcast. It will prepare students to take part in the Journalism Department’s media practica. Conducted in Spanish.
JOUR 390. Freedom of the Press (3)
Prerequisite: Completion of the lower division writing requirement. Not available for those with credit in JOUR 400. Designed for non-journalism majors. Legal rights and privileges of the mass media under the Constitution. Censorship and control of the press. (Available for General Education, Lifelong Learning)
JOUR 393. Special Projects (3)
Prerequisite: Senior status and approval of project by department chair. Independent work with faculty supervision.
JOUR 395A, B. Broadcast News Practicum (1-4)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 315. Supervised work on KCSN in news and documentary programs. Students work as writers, reporters and editors. Critiques of student work. Three hours of activity per unit per week required.
JOUR 397A, B. Newspaper Practicum (1-4)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 310 for writers and reporters and JOUR 330 for editors. Supervised work on the department daily newspaper. Students work as writers, reporters, photographers and editors. Three hours of activity per unit per week required.
JOUR 398A, B. Public Relations Practicum (1-4)
Prerequisites: C or better in JOUR 340 and 341. Hands-on experience designing and implementing public relations campaigns on behalf of non-profit clients, both on and off campus. Supervised work on a broad range of public relations activities and documents, with heavy emphasis on writing. Creates professional setting in which students initiate, launch, sustain and carry through public relations campaigns of their own design. Three hours of activity per unit per week required.
JOUR 400. Mass Communication Law and Ethics (3)
Not available for students with credit in JOUR 390. Examination of the ethics and laws that protect the privileges and define the responsibility of the mass media. Topics include the 1st Amendment, legal access to information, plagiarism, newsgathering, public access to the media, libel, right of privacy, fair trial/free press, obscenity and censorship.
JOUR 410. Investigative Reporting (3)
Prerequisites: C or better in JOUR 310 or 315. Researching, reporting, writing and producing investigative stories on societal, governmental and scientific issues for print, broadcast or on-line media. Ethical issues, problems, traditional techniques and technological approaches to investigative journalism.
JOUR 415. Reporting for Television News (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 315 and 325. Reporting, writing, editing and producing for television news. Fundamentals of television news field reporting; writing, researching, interviewing, editing complete narrative packages. Six hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 435. Broadcast News Documentary (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 415. Study of documentaries. Development and production of news and public affairs documentaries. Six hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 440. Public Relations Techniques (3)
Prerequisites: C or better in JOUR 340 and 341. Focus on strategic planning, critical thinking, management and problem solving through the use of case studies. Builds upon previously acquired public relations tools and techniques. Includes campaign strategies, research strategies, client relations, creating website content, internal communications, media relations, crisis communication, media training and budgeting.
JOUR 445. Advanced Television News (3)
Prerequisites: C or better in JOUR 335 and 415. Reporting, writing, editing, anchoring, producing television newscasts for airing on cable or television. Students produce weekly newscasts in a professional environment, followed by critique and discussion. Six hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 450. Advanced Photojournalism (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 350. Advanced instruction in the techniques and ethics of photojournalism. Emphasis on reporting and narrative construction for the photojournalist. Includes the production of picture stories, photo essays and the preparation of a professional portfolio. Six hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 455. Documentary Photojournalism (3)
Prerequisites: C or better in JOUR 350. Production course which guides the student to a discovery and use of the principles of investigation and reporting on a subject in depth. Production of photographic images are supported by a survey of the major journalistic documentary projects in still photography. Six hours of classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 460. Magazine Journalism (3)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 330. Principles, problems and techniques of magazine editing and design; production of department magazine; nonfiction article writing and research. Six hours of scheduled classroom and lab activity required.
JOUR 465. Mass Communication and Popular Culture (3)
Study of the social, political and economic influences that shape popular culture and its effects on audiences. Examines media’s roles as storytellers. Particular emphasis on applying critical thinking, research and writing skills to analyze media policies and practices and on developing strategies that empower consumers in the media.
JOUR 478. International News Media (3)
Study of news media systems and the influence of government, economics, culture and propaganda on international news practices. Examines the role of multinational media organizations.
JOUR 480. History of the American News Media (3)
Study of the development and influence of the news media in the U.S. from colonial times to the present. Examines social, economic, cultural, technological and political influences on news media development. Special attention to dominant media personalities.
JOUR 494ABC. Internship (1-3)
Prerequisite: C or better in JOUR 330 or JOUR 335. Supervised employment and field study on newspaper and magazines, in public relations, or in radio and television news. (Credit/No Credit only)
JOUR 495A-Z. Selected Topics in Journalism (3)
Prerequisites: C or better in JOUR 310 or 315. Advanced research, writing and reporting of selected journalistic styles and/or subject matter. Ethical issues, problems, traditional techniques and technological approaches are integral segments of each selected topic. Subject content will change from semester to semester.
JOUR 496A-Z. Experimental Topics Courses in Journalism (1-3)
Prerequisite: one year of appropriate course work in journalism. Experimental courses in journalism with course content to be determined.
JOUR 498. Tutorial in Mass Communication (1)
Prerequisite: Senior standing and coursework appropriate to the tutorial subject. Individual, supervised study in selected areas of the student’s interest.
JOUR 499. Independent Study (1-3)
JOUR 585. Theory of Mass Communication (3)
Prerequisite: Senior or graduate status. Extended analysis of the theories which inform the study of mass communication. The course focus is on contemporary theories but is grounded in a historical understanding of the development of theory in the field.

Graduate Courses In Mass Communication

Only courses at the 400-500 or 600 level carry credit toward the master’s degree in Mass Communication. Admission to the graduate seminars is restricted to those who have been granted classified status in the Mass Communication program.
MCOM 600. Seminar in Research Methods (3)
Prerequisite: Classified graduate status. Scope and methods of research in mass communication, including review of literature, statement of research problem, research design, collection and analysis of data and information, and writing the research report.
MCOM 610. Seminar in Specialized Reporting (3)
Prerequisites: Classified graduate status, JOUR 110. Professionally-oriented course in the use of reporting and writing skills and knowledge with a focus on individual areas of student interest.
MCOM 620. Seminar in Media Criticism (3)
Prerequisite: Classified graduate status. Analysis of books, journal articles and other reviews which deal with contemporary mass communication.
MCOM 630. Seminar in Analysis of Media Performance (3)
Prerequisite: MCOM 600. Extended application of research and evaluation techniques as used in mass communication research to describe the quality of news media performance.
MCOM 690. Research Practicum (3)
Prerequisite: MCOM 600. Instruction and individualized guidance in the preparation of thesis or project proposals, including introduction, literature review and methodology.
MCOM 693A-Z. Selected Topics in Journalism and Mass Comm (3)
Prerequisite: Classified status and approval of sponsor. Advanced examination of selected topics in journalism and mass communication with course content to be determined by department faculty.
MCOM 694. Internship (1-6)
Prerequisites: MCOM 600 and approval of sponsor.
MCOM 696. Directed Graduate Research (3)
MCOM 697A. Comprehensive Written Exam (1)
Written and oral examination in the major field (Mass Communication) and two specified fields selected with the approval of the graduate committee. One of those specialized fields may be outside the Department of Journalism.
MCOM 698. Thesis or Graduate Project (1-6)
Prerequisites: MCOM 690 and approval of sponsor.
MCOM 699. Independent Study (1-6)
Prerequisites: MCOM 600 and approval of sponsor.