Courses

  • COM JO 516: Foreign Reporting
    Graduate Prerequisites: COM JO 308; or consent of instructor.
    This course covers the practical, critical, and theoretical issues involved in reporting the world for domestic audiences. How can journalists best report on different cultures? How can they demystify ?the other? for their readers and viewers? How do you work with a ?fixer?? Manage your own trauma? Stay safe? How does 19th Century colonialism still influence foreign coverage and how do you escape this influence? What?s to be learned from Conrad?s ?Heart of Darkness? about reporting on Africa? When is ?personalizing? the news a bad idea and when is a good time to do it? Students read outstanding examples of foreign reporting, workshop their stories, and learn how to be successful given the current standards for foreign reporting. However, in light of such challenges as globalization, global warming, ethnonational conflict, and the rise of China, the class also debates how to develop better norms in the future. 4 cr, either sem.
  • COM JO 519: Narrative Radio
    Students will produce in depth, narrative audio stories similar to what is heard on public radio. They will use digital recorders and Protools audio software. Students will also produce slide shows using Soundslides. Most stories will air on WBUR and WTBU.
  • COM JO 520: Advanced Production and Design
    This is a studio course where students learn to design for web and print. Students will design sample pages for two online/print magazines on topics of their own choosing in the categories of visual arts, music, and culture/issues/ideas. Students will design with and master Dreamweaver, QuarkXPress, Adobe Photoshop, and Adobe Illustrator. The aim of this course is to enhance communication through visual language. Typography and the use of images are explored as creative/innovative ideas are developed. All projects will be portfolio pieces. 4 cr, either sem.
  • COM JO 522: Professional Photo Portfolio
    A course preparing students for entry into a career in visual journalism. Weekly assignments are designed so that students build a portfolio allowing them to compete for opportunities in the professional world. Students will master critical skills including story development, use of multimedia, writing, and meeting deadlines. 4 cr., 2nd sem.
  • COM JO 523: The Presidency and the Media
    Students follow the week-to-week interaction of the president and the media, while examining the evolution of relations between journalists and American presidents from FDR to Clinton.
  • COM JO 524: Broadcast Sports Journalism
    Using the most effective and up-to-date technology, JO524 students produce a weekly sports show "SportsNight." The emphasis will be on team work in producing, writing, editing and presenting sports. Each week, you?ll be assigned a different task and position to perform, an integral way to learn how a news/feature program is produced. 4 cr, either sem.
  • COM JO 525: Media Law and Ethics
    An examination of the many ethical issues and dilemmas that face reporters, editors, and producers and how to resolve them with professional integrity. Danger of actions for contempt or defamation, laws of copyright and intellectual property.
  • COM JO 527: Art of Narrative Nonfiction
    An intensive seminar and workshop into techniques and strategies of narrative non-fiction reporting and writing. These would include: interviewing for narrative, creating a workable structure for long-form writing, understanding the concept of arch of narrative, developing scenes and description and understanding the elements of revision.
  • COM JO 530: Drafts of History
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM JO 357.
    Journalism has been called "the first rough draft of history." We consider several episodes from U.S. history and examine how the first drafts written by journalists compare to subsequent drafts written by historians. We analyze how new evidence and chronological distance alter understanding of important events. 4 cr., 1st sem.
  • COM JO 532: Sports Journalism Seminar Series
    Explore the issues that writers and broadcasters face as they pursue their careers in sports journalism. Each week, we invite working professionals to join us on campus discussing such topics as ethics, sports and its place in society, reporting, women in sports and how to find that first job. Students are expected to ask thoughtful questions and will be required to write an evaluation each week. A great opportunity to start the networking process. 4 cr, 1st sem.
  • COM JO 533: The Essay
    This is a course about the conception, development, and expression of ideas through language. In the final analysis, the course puts front and center the process of thinking about such ideas and then persuading others of their importance and rectitude. Among the issues addressed are: the logic and structure of arguments; the articulation of a ?stance?; development of the tone, style and elegance of writing; and the parrying of counterarguments even before they are stated. Students read and analyze a variety of essays on a number of subjects, including, film, domestic politics, cultural issues, war and peace, theatre and fine arts, sexual politics, human relationships, and the training of dogs. Among the authors whose work gets read are Susan Sontag, Simon Schama, Chuck Klosterman, Ellen Willis, Woody Allen, Nick Hornby, Garry Wills, Francis Fukuyama, Joan Didion, Hannah Arendt, Samuel Huntington, and Jean-Paul Sartre. 4 cr, either sem.
  • COM JO 534: Broadcast News for Nonmajors
    Basic instruction in producing video news reports for television and/or the Internet designed for students who are not majoring in broadcast journalism. 4 cr, 2nd sem.
  • COM JO 535: Investigative and Project Reporting
    Investigative and Project Reporting is an advanced seminar that will teach select students the practice of depth reporting and writing. Students will use a variety of reporting techniques ? from computer database searches to shoe leather -- in pursuit of long-term projects ideally destined for publication in one of several professional publications that have entered into cooperative agreements with the Boston University Department of Journalism. Among them are The Boston Globe, Boston Magazine and the Boston Phoenix. Story subjects will range from public system failures to questionable convictions, narrative reconstructions to explanatory journalism. 4 cr, 2nd sem
  • COM JO 537: Digital Photography Fundamentals
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM JO 513.
    Graduate Prerequisites: COM JO 513.
    Students plan, discuss, photograph, write, and lay out picture stories in black and white and/or color.
  • COM JO 538: Feature Writing
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM JO 310.
    Graduate Prerequisites: COM JO 721.
    Writing feature articles for newspapers, magazines and other media. Covers markets open to free-lance writers, published articles, newspaper feature sections, and Sunday supplements. Offered only in the summer, for undergraduates and graduate students.
  • COM JO 542: the Literature of Journalism
    This course examines the works of prominent literary journalists, and explores different voices and styles in the genre. The course also seeks to track the evolution of nonfiction narrative in American journalism, starting with Mark Twain and continuing to the present.
  • COM JO 545: Reporting Military Affairs
    The role of the press in covering international conflicts, as well as the responsibilities of the press to cover military policies, procedures, and programs during peacetime.
  • COM JO 546: Statehouse Program
    The prime component of The Boston Statehouse Program, this advanced study in government and political reporting offers the opportunity to write and report from Beacon Hill for a Massachusetts daily. The course goal is to develop writing and reporting skills through the daily experience of covering state government. Students acquire the skills necessary to work in a daily news environment, including interviewing, developing sources, archival research and deadline writing.
  • COM JO 550: Advanced Online Journalism
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: COM JO 304.
    This course focuses on producing long-form, interactive multimedia news. Working in teams, print, broadcast and photojournalism students learn to produce documentary style multimedia packages that combine still photography, audio, video and text. The course will offer an overview of techniques and best practices currently employed by news organizations to produce advanced multimedia projects for the web. 4 cr, either sem.
  • COM JO 702: Advanced Science Writing
    Students learn to research, organize, and write a major magazine article of publishable quality. Projects for the course, with appropriate revision, may be submitted in lieu of a separate master's project.