Graduate Admissions

Journalism MA

    PLEASE NOTE: These are samples only. Course offerings are subject to change and not all courses are offered each term or each year. Be sure to check the online course catalog and the current class schedule for details about pre-requisites, terms offered, class fees, etc.).

Foundations of Journalism
Concentrates on the basics of news writing, reporting, copy editing, interviewing and ethics. You will develop the skill of crisp, objective writing as you engage in live reporting. The course will be a combination of out-of-class stories and in-class assignments done on deadline, including covering government meetings, press conferences and other events. This intensive three-week class will define the professional standards expected and give you the tools to help you succeed in graduate school.

Journalism Culture: Trends and Traditions
Surveys the growth and development of journalism around the world , especially the evolution of U.S. form, practices and institutions of news and information gathering, writing and editing along with dissemination to various audiences. Journalistic freedoms and ethical responsibilities will be examined along with economic and technological changes.

Digital Journalism
Intensive hands-on training in multimedia news gathering and production, as well as distribution through digital channels, for a range of journalism story forms including audio, video, photo essays, online writing, social networking and audio slideshows.

Information Search Strategies
Demonstrations and practical experience in advanced reporting techniques including interviewing, using public documents and analyzing computerized data.

Reporting Public Affairs: Local
Covering local events alongside working professionals, students report, on deadline, on meetings of the City Council, Chicago Board of Education and Cook County Board of Commissioners, as well as community news events and press conferences. Students also produce non-deadline stories on issues of importance to Chicago neighborhoods. Students will produce assignments compatible with multiple platforms.

Local Government & Politics Seminar
Students research and reflect on local government and political issues related to their companion practicum class and develop historical and policy-oriented context for stories on critical public issues such as housing, transportation, education and public safety.

Reporting Public Affairs: State & National Government
Trains students to recognize and report on critical state and federal government issues. Students report regularly on issues central to their assigned beat, with emphasis on developing sources in state and federal agencies, the legislative bodies and special-interest groups.

State & National Government Seminar
Lectures, readings, interviews and discussion sessions with government officials, legislators, lobbyists and other experts prepare students for covering state and national government operations including executive functions, legislative process, the judiciary, regulatory activities and role of politics and lobbying.

Thesis Project Seminar
As a final requirement for the M.A. Journalism degree, students must satisfactorily complete a 5,000 word , 15 minute broadcast script or multimedia presentation( publishable or producible) pertaining to a public affairs issue. These are judged on the basis of research, reporting, writing, editing and overall presentation, as well as source list. This final work is designed to be a culmination of what each student has learned and a showcase of their ability. (A Thesis Seminar is offered each year to help guide students through the process of picking a viable topic, developing a proposal, outline, research and writing schedule and producing multiple drafts).

Business Beat
Teaches students to understand and report on the economy, big and small business, financial markets, technology and the media, labor, real estate and more.

Reporting & Producing for Television News
Specializes on development and writing of reporter-new packages as well as news producing. The stories written in the class will also be shot/edited/with graphics generated by the student for a complete, air ready piece.

Science & Medicine: Covering the News
The ability to write and report clearly about scientific, health and environmental subjects is an increasingly useful skill for journalists.

Covering Religion
Focuses on news coverage of various religious groups and issues of individual spirituality, religious pluralism and politics in the United States and globally. The course covers so-called “world religions” as well as American-born sects, along with ecumenical and inter-religious movements.

Covering Politics
Report and write about local and national political races using multimedia techniques. Employing databases, interview techniques and a variety of advanced reporting skills, students will create a body of work that will help them as political reporters, editors and producers.

Covering Europe
Intense international travel/study course designed to prepare students to report, write and produce print, broadcast and multimedia projects about the politics, history, economics and culture of Europe. Course has been taught in various locales including Paris, London, Brussels, the Hague and Ireland (in 2013).

Traveling Writing
Teaches the fundamentals of travel writing in the field. Students get first-hand experience reporting and writing travel features for newspapers and magazines as well as blogging and taking digital photos and video. Course has been taught in Honduras, Mexico, Paris, Italy and Peru.