Multimedia Journalism, BA

If your professors are out of breath when they get to class, it’s probably because they were running from their job at a TV or radio station to get to the classroom. As a Broadcast Journalism student, you’ll work with active industry professionals to develop your skills. You’ll learn to report, write and produce news and features for television or traditional and internet-based radio, including podcasts.

This interdisciplinary concentration is a collaboration among the Communication, Radio, and Television departments. Hands-on broadcast experience is combined with practical coursework in topics such as television and radio production and on-camera performance, and you can take courses in everything from comedy journalism to film reviews. This program prepares you for high-profile internships and jobs. Some of our grads landed their first jobs at ESPN, The Real, The Country Music Channel, WGN-TV and traditional outlets throughout the country.

What to Expect Your First Year

You’ll take Introduction to Journalism, which is part of the foundational course requirements for the Multimedia Journalism major. This intro course is not, however, your traditional survey class. In your first few weeks, you’ll venture out into the city, finding and developing stories with close guidance from your professors. There are even opportunities to have your stories published so you can start building a body of work. This practical application will help you hone your reporting skills and support your study of theory, practice and historical perspectives.

Next, you’ll take foundational courses in Radio or Television, depending on which emphasis you select.

What to Expect Your Last Year

Television Emphasis: You’ll enroll in practicum courses like Newsbeat, a live TV newscast; or Metro Minutes, a TV newsmagazine. You’ll edit your resume reel to highlight your exposure to major-market news. Your portfolio is a critical focus at this point, as you’ll need a robust body of work to show internship providers and future employers. By your senior year, you’ll likely be on your second broadcast internship, where we expect you’ll flourish because of your specialized knowledge of on-air performance, storytelling and newsroom technology.

Radio Emphasis: Your specialized courses may include Radio Podcasting and Radio/Audio Documentary. You’ll have opportunities to contribute at Columbia’s award-winning station 88.1 WCRX-FM, perhaps hosting your own talk or music show. By your final year, you’ll likely be working on your second broadcast internship, bringing with you a practical knowledge of industry-standard technology and practices. Your body of work will reflect your experience reporting radio news in a major media market.

Detailed Program Information

Real-world Opportunities

What experience will I get outside the classroom?

Columbia prides itself on giving you real-world opportunities. As a Journalism student, you’ll have the chance to cover exciting issues across Chicago in spheres such as politics, culture, entertainment and sports. The city will be your laboratory, as you learn and report alongside professional journalists.

You’ll have the chance to work for award-winning, student-produced media outlets like the Columbia Chronicle newspaper, Echo magazine, ChicagoTalks and AustinTalks online publications, 88.1 WCRX-FM (our radio station), and Frequency TV (our TV station).

You can also take advantage of study abroad opportunities. Past locations have included Ireland and Italy.

What are my internship options?

Broadcast outlets want Columbia interns. That’s because they know they don’t have to hold your hand when it comes to equipment, technology, operations and general professionalism. Columbia broadcast interns land opportunities at local affiliates of all the major television stations—ABC, NBC, CBS, WGN, Telemundo and Comcast Sportsnet—as well as radio stations and production houses, where interns work in promotions, podcasting, audio production and on-air support. Some of our radio students have landed internships with WBEZ’s Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me; ABC 7’s sports segment with Mark Giangreco; WLS AM/FM; and other top radio stations including WPWX 92.3FM (Power 92); WLUP 97.9 FM (The Loop); and WKQX 101.1 FM.

We have a full-time internship coordinator who can help you find the best opportunities, professional environments and internship learning experiences to complement your coursework and marketability after graduation.


Ready to Apply?

We’re happy you’re thinking of joining our creative community. We work hard to make our application process as simple and fast as possible, but should you run into any concerns, we're here to help at any time.

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