Undergraduate Journalism Course Descriptions, Pre Fall 2013

Not all courses are offered every semester. Pre- and corequisites are enforced.

JRN 101-B or JRN 103-G News Literacy

How do you know if you’re getting the truth from the news media? This course is designed to prepare students to become more discriminating news consumers. It will examine standards of reliability and accuracy in news gathering and presentation, and seek to establish the differences between news and propaganda, assertion and verification, bias and fairness, and infotainment and journalism. Students will be encouraged to critically examine news broadcasts, newspaper articles and Web sites. Visiting journalists will be questioned about the journalistic process and decision-making. Previously offered as a topic to EGL 390-G, spring 2006. Not for credit in addition to EGL 390 with that topic.

Students have the option to take News Literacy either as a DEC B or a DEC G, but not both. JRN 101 cannot be taken for credit in addition to JRN 103 or vice versa.
Pre- or corequisite: WRT 101 or higher or equivalent, or permission of department
3 credits

JRN 108 – F: The History and Future of the American Press

This course traces the history of the American press from pre-American Revolution to post-Internet revolution. It examines the political, economic and technological forces that shaped the news media and how the press, in turn, influenced American government, politics and society. Topics will include freedom of the press, the rise of the popular press, war and the press, the press and presidents, the impact of investigative journalism, the evolution of radio and TV news, and the advent of 24/7 online news. Previously offered as JRN 280. Not for credit in addition to JRN 280.

Pre- or corequisite: WRT 101 or higher or equivalent, or permission of department
3 credits

JRN 110: News I: Basic News Reporting and Writing

An introduction to reporting and writing the news, including defining what is newsworthy. This is a foundation for all other courses in the journalism program. Through weekly assignments students will develop a mastery of the basic elements of writing a news story that conforms to standards of clarity, accuracy and fairness. An emphasis is placed on gaining practical experience through reporting on classroom, campus and community events. The development of basic skills is accompanied by the exploration of the role of the press in a free society. The course includes JRN 111, a six-week immersion lab in grammar, punctuation and sentence structure. Students who pass a proficiency test will be exempt from the lab. All other students must take the lab and pass the test to advance in the journalism program. Previously offered as JRN 287. Not for credit in addition to JRN 287.

Prerequisite: Completion of DEC. category A
Mandatory Corequisite: JRN 111
Pre- or corequisite: JRN 101 (formerly offered as EGL 390 Fall 2005-Spring 2006) or JRN 103
3 credits

JRN 111: Writing Immersion Lab

To progress in the major and minor program, students must pass a grammar proficiency test as part of JRN 111, a grammar course that is corequisite with JRN 110. The grammar course includes an eight-week immersion lab in grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure. In the ninth week, all students take a proficiency test. Those who pass are excused from the lab for the rest of the semester. All other students must continue attending the lab and will be required to take a second test on the last day of class.

Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grading only. Students must receive a Satisfactory grade in JRN 111 in order to continue in journalism skills courses.

Prerequisite: Completion of DEC A
Mandatory Corequisite: JRN 110
S/U grading

JRN 210: News II: Advanced Reporting and Writing

This course is a continuation of JRN 110, with an emphasis on developing advanced reporting and newswriting skills. Students move beyond the basic wire-service type breaking-news report (speech story,obituary, crime report) and begin writing using more advanced forms: the news feature, the profile, the news analysis, the trend story. Classroom drills include scene-setters and human-interest stories. Emphasis is placed on improving reporting skills, developing story ideas, researching, interviewing, expanding the
number and type of sources used and using numbers and statistics accurately and effectively. Students are required to write in Associated Press style.

Prerequisite: JRN 110 and 111 or 287
Mandatory Corequisite: JRN 211
3 credits

JRN 211: Digital Photojournalism Lab

In this lab, which must be taken in conjunction with JRN 210, students develop an appreciation for news photography and fundamental skills, including photo composition, lighting, approaches to subject matter and other aspects of news photography. In addition to being able to illustrate and enhance the stories they produce in JRN 210, students will acquire the ability to apply these skills in many of their subsequent print, broadcast and online journalism courses. Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grading only. Students must
receive a Satisfactory grade in order to continue in journalism skills courses.

Mandatory Corequisite: JRN 210
S/U grading

JRN 220: Media Law and Ethics

This course examines how journalists do their work from the perspectives of legal and ethical parameters. It will provide an introduction to the legal foundation that supports freedom of the press and examine current law on such subjects as source confidentiality, access to documents, libel, and invasion of privacy. Students will also examine ethical codes that guide journalists, including standards regarding independence, accountability, truth-telling, protecting sources, and study conflicts that arise when journalistic principles clash with real-life dilemmas.

Prerequisite: JRN 110 and 111
3 credits

JRN 288: On Campus Internship

Designed to provide students with experience in journalism at the campus level. Students will work for a campus news outlet on a schedule approved by the School of Journalism. The work will involve journalistic skills related to the educational goals of the School of Journalism. The internship coordinator will determine whether the work meets appropriate journalistic standards. This internship is required of all journalism majors and may be repeated once.

Prerequisite: JRN 210 and 211; 12 credits of JRN; permission of intern coordinator
Pre- or corequisite: JRN 310 if broadcast or online
1 credit, S/U grading

JRN 301: Journalism 24/7

This course examines the rapidly evolving media landscape and the implications for journalism and journalists. Students examine the revolutionary changes in digital technology, dramatically shifting patterns of media consumption, rise of non-traditional competition, challenges of serving a more diverse audience, and accelerating media consolidation, and explore alternative visions for the impact on content,
standards, business models, and jobs in the next decade.

Prerequisites: JRN 108; JRN 110 and 111
3 credits

JRN 310: News III: Reporting, Writing and Production for Broadcast

Students are introduced to the skills needed to report and write news stories for television and radio. Students will become familiar with the proper use of pictures and sound in broadcast journalism, and become comfortable writing news reports in a variety of broadcast formats. Students also are expected to become familiar with a variety of broadcast production tools, including the basics of Final Cut Pro and video photography. Course includes a lecture and a weekly three-hour lab.

Prerequisite: JRN 210 and 211
3 credits

JRN 320: The Promise and Perils of Online Journalism

This course examines the challenges presented by the explosion of journalism on the Internet and assesses the role of the journalist in an online society. Students are exposed to both practical skills and a broader understanding of issues. Topics include how journalists add value to information online, writing and editing for the Web, the use of interactive tools, blogs and podcasts, and an elementary understanding of Web design. At the same time, students explore issues of privacy, the Internet’s potential threat to traditional journalistic standards, and how online publishing is creating new audiences. Students will critique news Web sites, participate in a blog and podcast, create a news Web page, and produce an online story package. Course includes a lecture and a weekly three-hour lab.

Prerequisites: JRN 210, 211
3 credits

JRN 333: Business Reporting

This course provides practical training for journalism students interested in a possible career in business reporting. It seeks to provide the basic understanding and skills to report on business and consumer news and economic trends. Goals include learning how to read and understand financial statements, how to identify and access relevant public documents, and how to interpret basic economic data and statistics. Students profile a public company on Long Island or in New York City, and learn how to write a business story that conforms to standards of accuracy and context. They will be encouraged to visit major financial institutions, public markets, and regulatory agencies in New York City. Students will also examine business stories and controversies in the news from the perspective of the business community and journalists.

Prerequisite: JRN 310
Advisory Prerequisites: ECO 108 and BUS 110
3 credits

JRN 334: Science and Health Reporting

Students will examine methods of evaluating and reporting science and health news with accuracy and context. Among the topics to be covered: how to read a medical journal article; how to understand simple statistical data; how to develop and interview expert sources; how to deal with conflicting claims. Drawing on the resources of the Health Sciences Center, the course also will provide information on how research and health care are organized and funded. Students will report and write several stories for print, broadcast or the Web. They also will spend a day shadowing a health care professional.

Prerequisites: JRN 210 and 211; 1 DEC E and 1 DEC F
3 credits

JRN 335: Reporting in New York City / Print

This course, which is offered mainly in winter and summer sessions, provides students with an overview of how reporters cover the major institutions in New York City: City Hall, the United Nations, the police department, the courts, Wall Street, etc. The course offers a blend of classroom instruction, talks with officials and journalists, and hands-on reporting. On reporting days, the class will be run as a newsroom. It is offered at the university’s Manhattan extension.

Prerequisites: JRN 210 and JRN 211; permission of the department
3 credits

JRN 336: Sports Reporting

This course is designed to prepare students to report, write and produce sports stories in print, broadcast and online, from sports news to behind-the-scenes issues that resonate in the world of sports. Upon completion of this course, students should be as comfortable covering a government hearing on steroids in professional sports as covering a basketball game.

Prerequisite: JRN 310
3 credits

JRN 337: Introduction to Narrative Journalism

Building on students’ experiences in newswriting, this courses examines the reporting and writing of longer stories and more textured feature stories. There will be an emphasis on focus, structure, and storytelling, including the rudiments of developing style and a narrative voice. Students will be expected to write several original enterprise stories. They will also explore the similarities and differences in telling stories in print, online, and in broadcast formats. Previously offered as JRN 288. Not for credit in addition to JRN 288 “Feature Writing” that was offered prior to Fall 2006.

Prerequisites: JRN 210 and 211
3 credits

JRN 340: Beat Reporting

This course is designed to develop the ability of students to cover a specific area of news coverage, a beat. Emphasis is placed on developing sources, finding stories, organizing a beat and covering a variety of beat stories from breaking news to profiles and in-depth, enterprise stories. Students will select a beat to follow throughout the semester. Students who took JRN 210 New II: Beat Reporting prior to Spring 2009 are not eligible to receive credit for JRN 340 Beat Reporting.

Prerequisite: JRN 310
3 credits

JRN 350: Journalistic Judgment

This course examines the fundamentals of journalistic judgment, for all media, with emphasis on critical thinking, maximizing accuracy, removing bias, and providing context. Students will do case studies in print, broadcast, and online before completing a culminating project. (Formerly known as The Principles of Editing)

Prerequisite: JRN 310
Pre- or corequisite: JRN 320
3 credits

JRN 355: Reporting in New York City / Broadcast

This course, which is offered mainly in winter and summer sessions, provides students with an overview of how broadcast journalists cover the major institutions in New York City: City Hall, the United Nations, the police department, the courts, Wall Street, etc. The course offers a blend of classroom instruction, talks with officials and journalists, and hands-on reporting. On reporting days, the class will be run as a newsroom. It is offered at the university’s Manhattan extension.

Prerequisites: JRN 310 and permission of the department
3 credits

JRN 361: News Editing and Presentation / Print

Editors are the last line of defense. Their job is to catch and correct mistakes, make stories readable if they are not, write engaging headlines and captions, design pages that invite the reader, protect the publication’s credibility, avoid libel, and otherwise exercise good news judgment. This course focuses on developing students’ copyediting and page design skills. Mastery of grammar and of The Associated Press Stylebook are goals. The course will cover the art of photo selection, placement and cropping, and the use of graphics and other elements to enhance storytelling. Students will use Adobe InDesign to create
attractive pages.

Prerequisites: JRN 350 or permission
Pre- or corequisite: JRN 364
3 credits

JRN 363: Magazine Writing

This course builds on JRN 337, advancing the exploration of long-form magazine stories. Students will learn how to develop ideas and craft them into sophisticated pieces with protagonists and strong narrative drive. They will learn to bring their stories to life using novelistic techniques such as character development, voice, mood and theme, conflict and resolution, scene-setting, foreshadowing and dialogue. Required reading assignments, group discussions of works-in-progress and roundtable meetings with professional narrative journalists will inspire students to develop their own writer’s eye and voice. The
culminating goal of the course is for each student to produce a 2,500-to-3,000-word story for publication. Students will also learn how to select a market for their stories and write a query letter.

Prerequisites: B or better in JRN 337 and permission of department
3 credits

JRN 364: City Editor

This course is designed to prepare student journalists to get to the bottom of complex stories
through probing reporting that will seek rich detail and context. Students will work independently under the supervision of a ‘City Editor’ to produce one in-depth story of approximately 1,500 words during the semester. These stories will delve deeply into the subject matter. Students will meet regularly with the City Editor in a seminar setting to discuss procedures, ideas, progress, to brainstorm and to share their experiences and assess their progress. They also will work independently on all aspects of developing their stories. Students will be graded on a number of benchmarks such as story proposal, revised proposal, quality of research and reporting, drafts of the story and the final story. It is the goal that the stories be published. Not for credit in addition for JRN 360.

Prerequisite: JRN 310
Pre- or corequisite: JRN 350 or permission
3 credits

JRN 370: Advanced Reporting, Writing and Production for Broadcast

This course builds on the work of JRN 310 and is offered in a workshop/production environment. There is focus on mastering the reporting of breaking news, live reporting and developing story ideas. Emphasis also will be on shooting techniques. Students will produce longer-form reports.

Prerequisite: JRN 310
Pre- or corequisite: JRN 350 or permission
3 credits

JRN 371: Television Production

This course is designed to introduce students to planning, assembling, producing and performing the elements of a newscast. Students will be exposed to the roles of key members of a newscast team, including producers, assistant producers, reporters, writers, anchors and video photographers and editors. There will be emphasis on developing decision-making and on-air skills, as students complete mini-newscasts and segments for broadcast. Students will be expected to meet strict deadlines and managecritical air time. Newscast segments will be showcased on JRN Web sites.

Prerequisite: JRN 370
3 credits

JRN 380: Advanced Editing and Presentation / Web

This course, designed for students interested in specializing in online news, will focus on content management and the presentation of news on the Web. Students will have the opportunity to manage a news website in real time, with emphasis on around-the-clock news judgment and presentation. Students will learn how to enhance online news through multi-media integration and reader/viewer interactivity. Students also will study information architecture, eye-tracking studies and different ways of making the Web more accessible for readers, including layering information.

The course builds on the skills learned in JRN 320. After completion of course overview material, students will move through three phases designedto simulate a key role in current online newsrooms. The phases include real-time content management, multi-media integration and harvesting original video. There will be emphasis on building critical thinking skills and developing team work. By the end of this course, students are to produce a complete multimedia project and integrate its production into a real-time online news site.

Prerequisite: JRN 320
Pre- or Corequisite: JRN 350 or permission
3 credits

JRN 381: Advanced Digital Storytelling

Students will combine their advanced journalistic skills in reporting, writing and producing with advanced multimedia techniques to create an online “microsite” devoted to one major story, combining text with video, photos, blogs and interactive features. This course builds on skills acquired in JRN 380.Significant computer use will be required outside of class time.

Prerequisite: JRN 380
3 credits

JRN 390: Special Topics: Issues in Contemporary Journalism

This special topics course will deal with timely and contemporary issues that affect journalists and journalism. The issues could range from the press in wartime, an examination of the press’ role covering war from World War II to the current war in Iraq, how the press covers presidential campaigns
and journalists as novelists. May be repeated as the topic changes.

Prerequisite: JRN 101 or 103; may vary by topic
3 credits

JRN 391: Journalism Workshops

This 1-credit workshop course is designed to assist students in developing skills that will be useful in various journalism courses. Topics will rotate. Anticipated topics include On-Air Presentation, Audio Journalism, Databases, FOIL and Sunshine Laws, Editing Software.

Prerequisites: Varies by topic, permission of the department
1 credit

JRN 392: Special Topics: Issues in Contemporary Journalism-Journalism Without Walls Prep

This 1-credit workshop is designed to assist students in preparing in advance if they are interested in taking JRN 435 Journalism Without Walls, a course in which students travel with journalism faculty to a location and spend several weeks reporting, writing and broadcasting from and about it. Before going to China to report on “Modern China and Its Media,” for example, students would examine the complex world of China’s media market, the world’s largest, over which the Chinese government exercises strict control of news and entertainment at the same time as journalists and bloggers are using digital technology
to get out their message. Each Journalism Without Walls Prep would be tailored to the specific locale and coverage issues.

Prerequisite: To be taken before JRN 435. Permission of the department.
1 credit

JRN 435: Journalism Without Walls

This course, which will be offered only during winter or summer sessions, is designed for experienced and energetic journalism students. Students will be assigned as part of a team to travel to a location and using only mobile technology, transmit stories and video from the field. Their work productwill be published via a special Web site. Students will have one week to research a topic or location before leaving for their destination. (Teams of students, for example, have gone to China, Russia, Cuba and the U.S. Gulf Coast.) While on assignment, students file blogs, gather multimedia and video, write and edit stories, produce a Web site and establish a “mobile news-room.” One or several instructors will accompany the students. This course that combines students’ journalistic skills, judgment and enterprise with knowledge of emerging technology. May be repeated as the topic changes.

Prerequisites: varies by subject and will be announced; permission of the department. A passport
may be required.
3 credits

JRN 475: Undergraduate Teaching Practicum I

Work with a faculty member as an assistant in one of the faculty member’s regularly scheduled courses. The student must attend all classes and carry out tasks assigned by the faculty member to assist in teaching the course. The student will meet with the instructor on a regular basis to discuss intellectual and pedagogical matters relating to the course. Not for major or minor credit.

Prerequisites: U3 or U4; Permission of instructor and undergraduate program director
3 credits, S/U grading

JRN 476: Undergraduate Teaching Practicum II

Work with a faculty member as an assistant in one of the faculty member’s regularly scheduled courses. Students assume greater responsibility in such areas as leading discussions and analyzing results of tests that already have been graded. The course in which the student is permitted to work as a teaching assistant must be different from the course in which he or she previously participated. Not for major or minor credit.

Prerequisites: JRN 475; permission of instructor and undergraduate program director
3 credits, S/U grading

JRN 487: Independent Study

Intensive study of a special topic undertaken with close faculty supervision. May be repeated.

Prerequisites: Permission of instructor and director of undergraduate studies
0-6 credits, S/U grading

JRN 488: Internship

Students work at local, state, and national news organizations. The work must involve journalistic skills related to the educational goals of the department.

Prerequisites: JRN 210 and 211; 310 if broadcast or online; JRN 288; 12 JRN credits; permission.
Recommended GPA: 2.5 overall and 3.0 in JRN.
0-6 credits, S/U grading

JRN 489: Specialized Internship

This is an advanced internship. Students will spend 2 days a week at the internship site. In addition, this specialized internship includes a weekly lecture designed to prepare students to report, write and produce stories that benefit from a greater knowledge of a subject. Examples of Specialized Internships include Hyperlocal Reporting, Police and Court Reporting, Governmental Reporting, Culture and the Arts. The work must involve journalistic skills related to the educational goals of the department.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor
Pre- or corequisite: JRN 340
4 credits, S/U grading

JRN 490: Senior Project

This is a capstone course and a requirement for all majors. In a culminating activity, students produce a major story of professional quality, first in their area of journalistic concentration, and then adapt the story for two additional media platforms. Students attend a weekly seminar and work independently under the supervision of a faculty sponsor.

Prerequisites: JRN 340; JRN 364 or JRN 370 or JRN 380
Pre or corequisites: JRN 361 or JRN 371 or JRN 381
3 credit