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Journalism and Mass Communication

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The journalism and Mass Communication Major

The journalism and mass communication major prepares students for careers that involve all aspects of news and information. Emphasis is placed on generating ideas, organizing, writing, editing and presenting information for various media platforms and audiences. Students work with advisers to develop a program of study that prepares them for work in communication-specific areas including broadcast media, magazines and/or newspapers, photo journalism, science communication, visual communication and digital media. The capstone professional internship experience, coupled with coursework that focuses heavily on writing, research, and professional abilities provide opportunities for students to practice and refine their skills.

To receive a bachelor of science degree in journalism and mass communication, a student must earn at least 120 credits. A minimum of 72 credits must come from courses other than ADVRT, P R, or JL MC. At least 50 of these credits must come from the liberal arts and sciences. Overall, at least 45 credits must be from 300-level or above. Journalism and mass communication majors are required to take:

STAT 101Principles of Statistics (or another approved statistics course)4

The degree requirements allow for a minimum of 34 credits and a maximum of 48 credits to be taken in JL MC, ADVRT, and P R. These include:

JL MC 101Mass Media and Society3
JL MC 110Orientation to Journalism and Communication1
JL MC 201Reporting and Writing for the Mass Media (C+ or better)3
One of the following two courses:
Intermediate Reporting and Writing for the Mass Media (C+ or better)
Reporting and Writing for the Electronic Media (C+ or better)
JL MC 460Law of Mass Communication3
JL MC 462Media Ethics, Freedom, Responsibility3
JL MC 499AProfessional Media Internship: Required3

Additional recommended courses and requirements for the journalism and mass communication major are available from the Greenlee School.

Students taking one major at the school may not seek a second major or a minor in the school. All Greenlee School majors are required to take a second major or minor outside the school as an area of expertise. All Greenlee School majors are required to take 499A.

Minor in Journalism and Mass Communication

Students cannot select more than one minor in the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication. Minors in the Greenlee School are not available to Greenlee majors.

For a minor in journalism and mass communication, students complete 15 credits.

JL MC 101Mass Media and Society3
JL MC 242Visual Principles for Mass Communicators3
9 credits from the following:9
JL MC 240X Principles of Journalism
Science Communication
Mass Communication Theory
Media Management
Electronic Media Technology and Public Policy
History of American Journalism
Journalism and Literature
Communication Technology and Social Change
World Communication Systems
Ethnicity, Gender, Class and the Media
Special Topics in Communication
Total Credits15

Journalism and Mass Communication, B.S.

Freshman
FallCreditsSpringCredits 
ENGL 1503JL MC 242 (suggested)3 
JL MC 1101LIB 1601 
JL MC 1013International Perspectives3 
Arts and Humanities3Natural Science3 
Natural Science3Arts and Humanities3 
Social Science3Arts and Humanities3 
 16 16
Sophomore
FallCreditsSpringCredits 
ENGL 2503JL MC 2013 
JL MC 300 level choice3U.S. Diversity3 
Foreign Language or Elective4World Languages and Cultures or Elective4 
Natural Science2Arts and Humanities3 
STAT 1014Social Science3 
 16 16
Junior
FallCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
JL MC 302 or JL MC 3033JL MC 300-level Choice*3JL MC 499A3
Minor/Second Major Choice3JL MC 300-level Choice*3 
Minor/Second Major Choice 3Minor/Second Major Choice3 
Social Science3Minor/Second Major Choice 300+ Level3 
Elective - 300+3Minor/Second Major Choice 300+ Level3 
 15 15 3
Senior
FallCreditsSpringCredits 
JL MC 4623JL MC 4603 
JL MC 400-level Choice*3Elective or Minor/Second Major Choice 300+ Level3 
JL MC 300-level Choice*3Elective or Minor/Second Major Choice 300+ Level3 
Minor/Second Major Choice 300+ Level3Elective or Minor/Second Major Choice3 
 12 12
*

For 300 and 400-level choices, please choose from the list of selected courses available from an academic adviser. You may schedule an appointment with an adviser by either calling 515-294-4342 or visiting with Greenlee School office staff at 101 Hamilton Hall.

University Requirement: Students in all ISU majors must complete a three-credit course in U.S. Diversity, as well as a three-credit course in International Perspectives. The approved course lists are found at the following web addresses:(U.S. Diversity) http://www.registrar.iastate.edu/students/div-ip-guide/usdiversity-courses and (International
Perspectives) http://www.registrar.iastate.edu/students/div-ip-guide/IntlPerspectives-current .

College of LAS Requirement: Minimum of 120 credits, including a minimum of 45 credits at the 300-level and above. You must also complete the LAS Foreign Language requirement and any unmet ISU admission requirements.

Minor or Second Major: Students are required to fulfill a secondary area of expertise. This requirement can be met by declaring a minor or a second major outside of the Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication.

Graduate Study

The Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication offers work for a master of science degree in journalism and mass communication.

Majors plan a program of study in one of two tracks:

I. Academic track  -- The School offers advanced academic preparation in communication theory and research, leading to the master of science degree. Graduate work prepares students to use and contribute to research and scholarship in the field of communication. This track requires a thesis based on original research, which must be defended successfully before a committee at the end of the program.

Areas of research emphasis include: science and risk communication, media effects, advertising, public relations, political communication, communication technology, law and ethics, international communication, visual communication and emerging media.

II. Professional track -- The School offers advanced professional study in journalism and mass communication leading to the master of science degree. Graduate work prepares students for professional careers in a variety of mass communication fields. Students with limited training or experience in journalism and mass communication may include skills courses in their programs, but the credits for those courses may not count toward the graduate degree. This track requires either a creative component which must be defended successfully before a committee at the end of the program.

 

All graduate students must complete 32 credits for graduation, comprised of four core classes, at least two electives outside the Greenlee School, and at least four thesis or creative component credits. The following core courses account for 10 credits of the needed 32 credits.

JL MC 501Theories of Mass Communication3
JL MC 502Fundamentals of Communication Research Methods3
JL MC 592Introduction to Graduate Study in Journalism and Mass Communication1
JL MC 598Seminars in Mass Communication1-3

Each student selects elective courses based on his/her area of emphasis and career goal, in consultation with the student's major professor and Program of Study Committee.

The Greenlee School graduate program offers minor work for students majoring in other departments. The M.S. minor requires:

JL MC 501, JL MC 510 and one other course in journalism and mass communication for a total of 9 credits taken within the Greenlee School.

Expand all courses

Courses

Courses primarily for undergraduates:

(3-0) Cr. 3. F.S.SS.


Communication theory models and their application to the mass media; the mass communication process; organization, characteristics and responsibilities of the mass media; media literacy process.

(1-0) Cr. 1. F.S.Alt. SS., offered irregularly.


Orientation to professional and pre-professional opportunities, writing for the mass media and curriculum requirements in the Greenlee School. Basic media writing preparation. Offered on a satisfactory-fail basis only.

(1-4) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Greenlee majors only or departmental permission. Must pass departmental assessment exam in language skills before registering; ENGL 250; credit or concurrent enrollment in JL MC 110.
Generating story ideas, exercising news judgment and gathering information via interviews, observation and documentary sources to produce news and informational material for the mass media. Emphasis on analyzing and organizing information, as well as accuracy and principles of good writing. Use of AP Style.

(3-0) Cr. 3. F.S.


Understanding and analysis of the visual message. Visual perception, visual communication theory, design syntax, design elements and how they are applied in journalism and mass communication.

(2-2) Cr. 3.

Prereq: JL MC 110 and Minimum of C+ in JL MC 201
Writing for newspapers, magazines and digital media. Enhancing and refining skills in developing sources and generating story ideas. Information-gathering techniques, reporting and writing.

(2-2) Cr. 3.

Prereq: JL MC 110 and Minimum of C+ in JL MC 201
Researching, organizing, and writing for radio, television and digital media. Basic principles of news programming and storytelling across electronic media platforms. An emphasis on development, content and structure.

(2-2) Cr. 3. F.S.

Prereq: Minimum of C+ in JL MC 201
Introduction to studio production using professional equipment. Course focus on visual concepts, maintenance and practical operation of studio equipment.

(2-2) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Greenlee majors only.
Creation of video productions for use as communication tools in advertising, promotions, short documentaries and public relations. Technical and artistic fundamentals of video production including planning, scripting, shooting, lighting and digital editing.

(2-3) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Minimum of C+ in JL MC 201.
Field techniques in single-camera video production used to shoot and edit visual stories. Introduction to electronic news gathering.

(2-2) Cr. 3. F.S.

Prereq: Minimum of C+ in JL MC 201
Basic photojournalism techniques. Includes camera operation, lighting, composition and photo reproduction techniques for print or computer-mediated applications. Emphasis on using the camera as a reporting tool. Basic use of digital imaging and editing software. Ethical issues involving photojournalism. A digital SLR camera is required.

(2-2) Cr. 3. Alt. F., offered irregularly.Alt. S., offered irregularly.

Prereq: JL MC 310 or permission of instructor
Advanced techniques and problem solving, both ethical and technical, for photographers who seek to be members of newsgathering teams. Photographic storytelling using a combination of audio and still photography techniques to report stories for print and web publications. Hands on experience with latest digital imaging technology. A digital SLR camera is required.

(2-2) Cr. 3. F.S.

Prereq: JL MC 308 or JL MC 310 or JL MC 316 or equivalent computer design proficiency
Visual storytelling concepts and principles for evaluating, constructing and designing information for the Web and other electronic publication systems. Issues of ethics and ownership of work pertinent to the new media.

(2-2) Cr. 3. F.S.

Prereq: Credit or enrollment in JL MC 242 and C+ or better in JL MC 201
Digital publishing and beginning techniques in layout, photo editing and vector artwork. Application of visual principles to design simple print projects.

(2-2) Cr. 3. S.

Prereq: JL MC 316 or equivalent computer design proficiency and JL MC 310 or 315.
Creating, designing and publishing content for mobile devices (e.g., cell phones and tablets). Use of digital publishing tools (e.g., In Design). Exposure to animation and video editing software.

(2-2) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Minimum of C+ in JL MC 302 or P R 321
Reporting and writing short- and long- form stories for magazines, newspapers, corporate communication and the Web. Focus on departmental stories, personal essays, trend or conflict articles and personality profiles. Emphasis on immersion reporting. Majors may not apply both 344 and Engl 303 toward graduation.

(2-2) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Minimum of C+ in JL MC 302 or P R 321
Reporting and writing about government, business, and other institutions; identification of and access to public records; investigative reporting techniques; developing major stories about government and nonprofit organizations; and ethical issues.

(Dual-listed with JL MC 547). (2-2) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification. Nonmajors and minors by permission of instructor.
Reporting and writing about science and technology topics for general audiences. Outlets for stories include print, broadcast and online media. Story topics include reporting about basic, applied and social sciences, as well as ethical, political and policy issues related to science and technology.

(2-2) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Minimum of C+ in JL MC 302 or P R 321
Editing content for multiple platforms, including websites, magazines, newspapers, and newsletters. Adapting material for audiences, including selection and organization of text and visuals, grammar, punctuation, usage, logic and accuracy. Designing print and online layouts. Using search engine optimization and social media to promote content.

(2-3) Cr. 3.

Prereq: JL MC 206.
Application of advanced television techniques: writing, producing, and managing live and recorded information programs.

(Cross-listed with ADVRT, P R). Cr. 1-3. Repeatable, maximum of 6 credits. F.S.

Prereq: Minimum of C+ in JL MC 201; other vary by topic. Instructor permission for non-majors.
Check with Greenlee School for course availability.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Junior classification
Theory and research in mass communication processes and effects; the scientific process; methods of measuring, evaluating and reporting mass communication research.

(Dual-listed with JL MC 506). (3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
Decision-making functions of media. Basic media market analysis, media organization and management, circulation and audience development, technological developments affecting management decisions, and relationships with labor and regulatory agencies that affect media operations.

(3-0) Cr. 3. S.

Prereq: JL MC 242, JL MC 316, JL MC 349 or concurrent enrollment; junior classification
Skills and strategies for editorial decision-making and management, including short and long range issue planning. Developing proposals, business plans and prototypes for content, design and layouts of publications for multiple platforms and diverse audiences, including new and existing online and print magazines, newspapers, newsletters and websites. Editing complex manuscripts, with continued emphasis on grammar, punctuation, usage, syntax and logic.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Junior classification
Issues and policies affecting historical, contemporary and future developments of electronic media and their technologies.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Junior classification
Evolution of motion picture and television content and other visual technologies. Theories and techniques for evaluating and critiquing film and video.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: JL MC 110 and minimum of C+ in JL MC 201; junior classification. Nonmajors by permission of department.
First Amendment law, libel, privacy, obscenity, contempt, copyright, trademark, the Federal Communications Act; laws affecting advertising, legal publication, and other business activities of the media.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Junior classification
Role of the mass media, including advertising and public relations, in shaping the social, economic and political history of America; impact of change in these areas on the development, traditions and philosophies of the media.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: JL MC 110 and minimum of C+ in JL MC 201. Greenlee majors only.
Ethics and professionalism in the practice of journalism, public relations and advertising.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Junior classification
A study of journalism's impact on literary writing and literature's impact on journalism, as seen through the works of esteemed American author-journalists.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Junior classification
Examination of historical and current communication technologies, including how they shape and are shaped by the cultural and social practices into which they are introduced.
Meets International Perspectives Requirement.

(Dual-listed with JL MC 576). (3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
World communication systems and social, political, and economic factors determining flow, character, and volume of news. Impact of media information, advertising and public relations on nations and societies. Comparative analysis of role and impact of traditional modes of communication, the mass media and computer-mediated systems.
Meets International Perspectives Requirement.

(3-0) Cr. 3. F.S.SS.

Prereq: Junior classification
Portrayals of ethnic groups, gender, and social class in the media in news, advertising, information and entertainment; the effects of mass media on social issues and population groups.
Meets U.S. Diversity Requirement

Cr. arr.

Prereq: Junior classification and contract with supervising professor to register
Independent studies are research-based. Students may study problems associated with a medium, a professional specialization, a philosophical or practical concern, a reportorial method or writing technique, or a special topic in their field. Credit is not given for working on student or professional media without an accompanying research component. No more than 3 credits of Jl MC 490 may be used toward a degree in journalism and mass communication or advertising.

(Cross-listed with ADVRT, P R). Cr. 1-3. Repeatable, maximum of 6 credits.

Prereq: Junior classification. See Schedule of Classes for possible pre-requisites.
Seminars or one-time classes on topics of relevance to students in communication.

Cr. 1-3. F.S.SS.

Prereq: JL MC majors: minimum of C+ in JL MC 202 or JL MC 206 or P R 321; ADVRT majors: minimum of C+ in JL MC 201 and ADVRT 301; P R majors: minimum of C+ in P R 321. All students, formal faculty adviser approval.
Required of all Greenlee School majors. A 400-hour (for 3 credits) internship in the student's journalism and mass communication or advertising or public relations specialization. Assessment based on employer evaluations, student reports and faculty reviews. Available only to Greenlee School majors. Offered on a satisfactory-fail basis only.

Cr. 3. F.S.SS.

Prereq: JL MC majors: minimum of C+ in JL MC 202 or JL MC 206 or P R 321; ADVRT majors: minimum of C+ in JL MC 201 and ADVRT 301; P R majors: minimum of C+ in P R 321. All students, formal faculty adviser approval.
Initial, required internship. A 400-hour (for 3 credits) internship in the student's specialization. Assessment based on employer evaluations, student reports and faculty reviews. Available only to Greenlee School majors. Offered on a satisfactory-fail basis only.

Cr. 1-3. F.S.SS.

Prereq: JL MC majors: minimum of C+ in JL MC 202 or JL MC 206 or P R 321; ADVRT majors: minimum of C+ in JL MC 201 and ADVRT 301; P R majors: minimum of C+ in P R 321. All students, formal faculty adviser approval.
Optional internship in the student's specialization. Assessment based on employer evaluations, student reports and faculty reviews. Available only to Greenlee School majors. Offered on a satisfactory-fail basis only.

Courses primarily for graduate students, open to qualified undergraduates:

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
Historical overview of mass communication theories. Examination of major areas of research activity and theoretical development related to organization, functions, and effects of mass communication.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: JL MC 501 or concurrent enrollment.
Research methods in journalism and mass communication, including problem selection, sampling, hypothesis formulation, research design, data collection and analysis. Designing a research strategy appropriate for a variety of communication-related questions and assessing the appropriateness, validity, and generalizability of research results.

(Dual-listed with JL MC 406). (3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
Decision-making functions of media. Basic media market analysis, media organization and management, circulation and audience development, technological developments affecting management decisions, and relationships with labor and regulatory agencies that affect media operations.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: JL MC 501
The process of developing professional communication and persuasion strategies, with emphasis on problem definition, behavioral objectives, situation analysis, strategy formulation, and justification through application of communication theories and research.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
Overview of dominant theories and research methods applied to the study and practice of public relations.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
Explores the theoretical frameworks in visual communication, including concepts of perception, visual language, visual persuasion, and the social, political and cultural implications of the use of images. Understanding the function of images in changing knowledge, attitudes and behavior.

(Dual-listed with JL MC 347). (2-2) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification. Nonmajors and minors by permission of instructor.
Reporting and writing about science and technology topics for general audiences. Outlets for stories include print, broadcast and online media. Story topics include reporting about basic, applied and social sciences, as well as ethical, political and policy issues related to science and technology.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
Study of risk communication principles, models and theories applicable to any risk communication situation. Emphasis on science, technology and risk issues, such as food, health, agriculture and the environment. Examines roles of scientists and communicators in cultivating a public informed about scientific and technological issues.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
Media roles and functions in society including interrelationships between the media and a variety of social actors and forces. Theories and practices regarding social networking and communication via social media; influence of social media and social networking.

(3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
Personal, organizational, and social implications of the use of communication technologies. Includes theories and empirical research across the continuum of perspectives, from techno-utopianism through an anti-technology stance.
Meets International Perspectives Requirement.

(Dual-listed with JL MC 476). (3-0) Cr. 3.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.
World communication systems and social, political, and economic factors determining flow, character, and volume of news. Impact of media information, advertising and public relations on nations and societies. Comparative analysis of role and impact of traditional modes of communication, the mass media and computer-mediated systems.
Meets International Perspectives Requirement.

Cr. arr. Repeatable.

Prereq: Permission of instructor

Cr. arr. Repeatable.

Prereq: Permission of instructor

Cr. arr. Repeatable.

Prereq: Permission of instructor

Cr. arr. Repeatable.

Prereq: Permission of instructor

Cr. arr. Repeatable.

Prereq: Permission of instructor

Cr. arr. Repeatable.

Prereq: Permission of instructor

Cr. 1-2. F.S.SS.

Prereq: Permission of instructor
Supervised internship experience. Offered on a satisfactory-fail basis only.

(1-0) Cr. 1.

Prereq: Graduate classification in JL MC.
Overview of advanced study in journalism and mass communication with special emphasis on requirements for obtaining the master of science degree.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable, maximum of 3 credits.

Prereq: graduate classification or instructor permission.
Seminar in Mass Communication.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. 1-3. Repeatable.

Prereq: Graduate classification or instructor permission.

Cr. arr. Repeatable.

Prereq: Approved creative component proposal

Courses for graduate students:

Cr. arr. Repeatable.

Prereq: Approved thesis proposal