Majors & Minors
The Department of Journalism and Communication offers major and minor programs in journalism and science and environmental writing, and a minor in mass communication.
Journalism is crucial to the public life of a democracy. At its best, journalism serves as a watchdog to government, offers a voice for the powerless at home and abroad, entertains and instructs the public, represents the views of varied constituencies, monitors and protects the environment and public resources, and provides a common memory for a people.
The purpose of the journalism major is to provide students with the knowledge and skills to fulfill such roles. The program emphasizes research, writing, editing, and critical thinking and analysis. Students integrate online technology with legal and ethical thinking and a global perspective that will prepare them for numerous opportunities in and out of journalism. In the journalism major, students take courses in writing, editing, visual literacy, law and ethics, a professional internship, and varied courses in the relationship of the media with society.
A second major is in science and environmental writing. Students learn to write about pure and applied scientific research, technology, engineering, the environment and medicine and health for a variety of audiences ranging from the general public to scientists and engineers in industry and government. Students can also gain experience in the science and environmental writing field research program. A minor in science and environmental writing is available that may be valuable for students with majors in science or engineering.
An interdisciplinary minor in mass communication is offered for students interested in developing communication skills and a better understanding of how people share meaning through persuasive use of rhetoric, logic and symbols in public, one-to-one and small group communication.