WKUjournalism.com is the digital magazine of the journalism sequence of WKU's School of Media.
All work featured on the site is original work produced by students in journalism classes.
The world of journalism is changing. However, the need for excellent journalists is not. The major in journalism grounds its curriculum in the skills that all employers within the news media and professional communications want: strong writing and editing skills; excellent storytelling skills; the ability to find and process complex information, and share it in a way that helps others understand it; and the ability to deal on a face-to-face basis with diverse audiences.
The core of the curriculum remains reporting, writing and editing for print and the Web. A dedicated and talented faculty with strong professional careers in journalism teaches these courses. That core is joined by a range of classes aimed at developing a foundation in multimedia storytelling: digital photojournalism, audio-visual gathering and editing; and Web site development and content delivery. Experts from all units throughout the SoM teach these classes. Ethical and professional standards, and emphasis on First Amendment principles and media law concepts are incorporated throughout the curriculum to complete the package.
Students in the journalism major graduate prepared for work at any news media outlet or for any position in professional communications. Along the way, they get one-on-one academic and career advising from the journalism faculty — and the knowledge and skills to make a difference.
The journalism multimedia curriculum offers students the opportunity to pursue a wide range of careers including: news reporting and editing for all media; public information officers; corporate communications; nonprofit communications. Law schools recruit heavily from journalism schools, particularly the journalism major, because the core courses develop interpersonal communication skills, research and writing. These same skills are widely sought in the business sector.
Major in Journalism* – 42 hours (reference No. 736) (catalog year fall 2018 and thereafter)
Specific objectives are to:
Prepare students for professional careers in the media.
Instill in students a high degree of professionalism, which consists principally of practical competence and ethical understanding.
Enhance students' understanding of the role of the news media in a democratic society.
Course descriptions can be found at https://www.wku.edu/undergraduatecatalog/.
Prospective majors take no more than 15 hours in the major before admission. Students must meet the following requirements for admission:
Completion of a minimum of 24 hours of course work applicable to a baccalaureate degree;
A minimum overall grade point average of 2.5;
Completion of ENG 100 with a grade of “C” or better and nine additional hours in the Colonnade Program;
Completion of the following courses with a grade of “C” or better: SJB 101, 102 and JOUR 202.
Students not meeting the above admission requirements will not be admitted to an SoM major and cannot register for any additional courses in the major.
The major in journalism requires 42 semester hours and leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree. No course with a grade of "D" or below can be counted toward the major or fulfill prerequisite requirements. One-half of the hours in the major must be at the 300- or 400-level. Students must take a minimum of 72 semester hours in courses outside of the School of Media unit including the University's Colonnade (general education) requirements. In addition to meeting institutional requirements for graduation, the Journalism Major must have a minor or second major outside of the School of Media and Film Studies that is approved by the major’s faculty adviser. Students may not select a minor in film studies or those offered within the SoM, unless they complete a second minor outside the SoM.
33 hours (prerequisite courses in italics)
SOM 101 Understanding Media Content, Ethics & Technology [fall]
SOM102 Media Collaboration
JOUR 202 Intro to News Writing
SOM 210 Software Studio (SJB 101 and 102)
BCOM 264 Digital Video Production
PJ 131 Intro to Digital Photography
PJ 261 Intro to Multimedia (PJ 131)
JOUR 301 Press Law & Ethics (PS 110, SJB 101, JOUR 202, junior standing or permission of instructor)
JOUR 302 Intermediate Reporting (JOUR 202)
JOUR 323 Multiplatform News (JOUR 202)
JOUR 325 Feature Writing (JOUR 302 or permission of instructor)
Diversity Elective: 3 hours
Take SJB 310 Media Diversity or ANTH 448 Visual Anthropology; COMM 463 Intercultural Communication; CRIM 446 Gender, Crime, and Justice; FLK 330 Cultural Connections and Diversity; SOCL 355 Sociology of Gender; SOCL 362 Social Institutions: Race/Class/Gender; SOCL 375 Diversity in American Society; SPAN 345 Hispanic Representation in the Media; or a diversity class approved by an academic adviser (some courses have prerequisites).
Restricted Electives: 3 hours; the Journalism Major coordinator can approve exceptions (prerequisite courses in italics)
AD 343 Print Design/Production/Typography
PJ 336 Picture Editing (PJ 131)
SOM 421 American Press History
JOUR 422 Issues in Mass Communication
JOUR 481 Problems in Mass Communication
JOUR 491 Internship (or JOUR 467 Practicum three times)
ENG 311 Creative Nonfiction (ENG 200, ENG 203)
ENG 402 Editing/Publishing (ENG 306 or ENG 307 and one upper-level professional writing course)
ENG 403 Writing Memoir and Autobiography (ENG 203 and ENG 300)
FLK 373 Folklore and the Media
SJB 330 Interactive Design (SJB 210)
BCOM 325 Writing TV/Radio (SJB 103)
BCOM 368 News Videography Editing (PJ 261)
Required Capstone: 3 hours
JOUR 426 Advanced Reporting (JOUR 325, JOUR 323)
SOM 402 First Amendment (instructor approval required)
Minor in Journalism Writing – 21 Hours Ref. #403
The minor in journalism writing requires a minimum of 21 hours. Students pursing the minor can gain valuable knowledge and skills in professional media writing and journalistic storytelling. Half the hours in the minor must be 300- or 400-level courses.
(prerequisite courses in parenthesis)
SOM 101 Understanding Media Content, Ethics and Technology (3)[fall]
JOUR 202 Introduction to News Writing (3)
JOUR 301 Press Law & Ethics (3) (PS 110, SJB 101, JOUR 202, junior standing or permission of instructor)
JOUR 302 Intermediate Reporting (3) (SJB 101, JOUR 202)
JOUR 325 Feature Writing (3) (JOUR 302)
Restricted Electives (prerequisite courses in parenthesis)
Select the remaining six hours in consultation with an assigned faculty adviser. Note: At least one course must have a JOUR prefix.
JOUR 323 Multiplatform News (3) (JOUR 202)
JOUR 426 Advanced Reporting (3) (JOUR 323, JOUR 325)
JOUR 467 Journalism Practicum (1) (Internship taken three times; requires permission of coordinator)
JOUR 481 Problems in Mass Communication (3) (Requires permission of coordinator)
JOUR 491 Internship (3) (Internship; requires permission of coordinator)
ENG 311 Creative Nonfiction (3) (ENG 200 and 203 or permission)
ENG 402 Editing/Publishing (3) (ENG 306 or ENG 307 & one upper-level professional writing class)
ENG 403 Writing Memoir and Autobiography (3) (ENG 203 and 300)
FLK 373 Folklore and the Media (3)
SOM 310 Media Diversity (3) (or an approved diversity class)
SOM 421 American Press History
BCOM 325 Writing TV/Radio (3) (permission of instructor)
For more information on the Journalism Writing Minor, contact Mac McKerral at firstname.lastname@example.org in the School of Media.
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