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Journalism and Media Writing

COURSE CODE
COURSE TITLE
CREDITS
Core Courses

 

 

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COM101

COM101 - Understanding Mass Media

This course surveys the theories, history, economics, audience, and regulations of the major forms of mass media, including newspapers, magazines, motion pictures, radio, television, and new electronic communication. Students develop a basic understanding of the roles of mass media and their effects on society and the individual. The course focuses on the relationship between mass media and society, so students can identify current trends that are changing the nature and function of traditional mass communication. Students examine and debate many current controversial issues concerning the mass media and their effects on our society and culture. Students discuss significant aspects of mass communication, including ethics and policy formulation that are playing key roles in the materialization of a new global communication era.

X
Understanding Mass Media
3
COM103

COM103 - Human Communication

This course is a basic survey of human communication, especially interpersonal and group. Attention is given to perception, language and meaning, listening, theories of persuasion, verbal and nonverbal communication, small group discussion, interpersonal conflict, and interviewing. The course focuses on understanding how human communication is fundamentally related to issues of interpersonal relationships; the history of human communication and language development; perception and intrapersonal communication; leadership; group/team work; multicultural diversity in organizations; decision-making; power; public speaking; and ethical challenges. This course helps students to develop and practice skills that will guide effective action in their professional careers and interpersonal relationships.

X
Human Communication
3
COM105

COM105 - Writing for The Media

This course provides students with a basic introduction to and overview of communication writing that focuses on channels of communication (clients, audiences, formats); creating writing samples; conducting writing exercises; developing strategies for soliciting feedback; and engaging in peer editing exercises. Students learn about various media writing formats, such as news releases, features, profiles, columns, editorials, reviews, speeches, public service announcements, backgrounders, etc. This is a writing intensive course. Prerequisite: COM 101.

X
Writing for The Media
3
COM203

COM203 - Effective Speaking

This course provides instruction and practice in preparing and delivering the various kinds of oral presentations encountered by professionals. Students learn how to analyze audiences, organize different types of presentations, prepare and use visual aids, deliver presentations to different audiences and respond to questions. Students are taught to express themselves in a clear, confident, responsible, and appropriate manner. The classroom environment is conducive to confidence building and overcoming the fear of speaking.

X
Effective Speaking
3
COM205

COM205 - Media Ethics & Society

This course explores such significant questions as: What constitutes sound, ethical communication practice in the mass media professions (TV, radio and internet), advertising, journalism and public relations? What are the moral and practical rules anyone involved in mass media professions must follow to maintain that all-important bond of trust between the client and the consumer of information? What constitutes ethical behavior in the news business, PR and advertising, and why is it vital to the functioning of a democratic society? This course uses two avenues of inquiry; one exploring the philosophical basis of media ethics and another outlining case histories from the media. Current trends in the news and popular culture’s view of the ethical lapses in the mass media, journalism, advertising, and public relations are also explored. The examination of media ethics is done from a constructively critical point of view, with a particular focus on the intersection of media and society. Prerequisite: COM 101.

X
Media Ethics & Society
3
COM212

COM212 - Intercultural Communication

This course examines communication issues that arise from contact between people from different cultural backgrounds in everyday life, social encounters, and business transactions. Interdisciplinary approaches are applied to the study of how verbal and nonverbal presentation, ethnic, gender, and cultural differences affect communication. The course provides exercises in participation, analysis, and criticism of interethnic and interracial communications in small group settings. Students examine factors of international communication; such as the cultural, economic, political, and social influences and the role of communication in affecting social change in a wide variety of cultures and countries. Prerequisite: COM 101 or SOC 101 or PSYC 101.

X
Intercultural Communication
3
COM315

COM315 - Communication Research

This course introduces students to methods of social research that are applied to communication theory and practice. This includes both academic research on human communication and the kinds of professional research conducted in media industries, such as journalism, advertising and public relations. Students conduct individual and group research projects during the term. Prerequisite: COM 101.

X
Communication Research
3
COM399

COM399 - Internship Seminar

This seminar helps students to develop objectives and identify potential sites for their internships. Topics include the application of communication course work to a professional career and the development of skills necessary to locate an internship. The final goal of this course is to secure an internship. Prerequisite: Junior standing.

X
Internship Seminar
1
COM400

COM400 - Field Experience I

This course is the professional component of the capstone experience in the Communication Department. The course provides students with a work/skill development opportunity to practice communication theory and skills in a real work setting. Students also keep a journal reflecting on their experiences and complete mid-and end-of-semester self-evaluations. The internship itself for 150 plus hours per week, the weekly seminar, and its assignments constitute the principle of the course.

X
Field Experience I
4
COM418

COM418 - Media Literacy

This course encourages students to take the mass media seriously through critical analysis of media content. Students study the power of the mass media in communicating cultural values and other messages. This capstone course reinforces the tools needed to think critically about the mass media in order for the students to then help others to do the same. Throughout their time in the communication program, students have been introduced to a variety of issues in the media (e.g., media content, media effects, ethics, and regulation). This course helps emphasize how all of these issues relate to one another. In the capstone paper and presentation, students have the opportunity to demonstrate the important research, writing, and oral communication skills they have developed. This course serves as the theoretical component of their capstone experience and is a writing-intensive course. Prerequisite: Senior standing.

X
Media Literacy
3
Concentration Courses

 

 

X
 
 
COM209

COM209 - Journalism

In this course, students learn reporting and writing techniques necessary to produce a variety of types of articles. Assignments may include politics, sports, entertainment, and interviews. There is discussion of roles of reporters, columnists, editorial writers, editors, photographers, and graphic designers in the daily process of journalism as decisions are made in the news­room as to what stories to cover; what stories, photographs and video clips to publish or broadcast; and on what page to display them or in which order to broadcast them. The various reporting specialties covered in journalism – Health, Education, Business, Arts, Sports, Lifestyle, Entertainment, Travel - are explored. Students have the opportunity to publish their work in the campus newspaper, The 1851 Chronicle. Prerequisite: ENG 102.

X
Journalism
3
COM213

COM213 - Writing for Public Relations

This course serves as a workshop in which students apply the fundamental skills of journalism to the different formats commonly used in writing copy for public relations and advertising, including press releases, public service announcements, profiles, brochures, and advertisements. In addition, students continue to sharpen their editing skills by revising their own work and by copyediting and critiquing the work of other students. Central to the objectives of this course is that students improve their ability to write clearly and concisely, avoiding common errors in grammar, punctuation, spelling, and usage. Prerequisite: ENG 102.

X
Writing for Public Relations
3
COM306

COM306 - Broadcast Journalism

This class introduces students to the basic skills in writing for radio and TV news, including beat reporting, writing, interviewing, and editing. Students critically evaluate newscasts and are introduced to the components of producing them. They also examine ethical challenges that arise when manipulation of images and sound can distort reality and compromise journalistic integrity.

X
Broadcast Journalism
3
COM310

COM310 - Political Communication

This course focuses on the complex ideas associated with the role of the press in a democracy. The nature and climate of our political processes, particularly elections, have changed dramatically in the past two generations, due in part to the extensive use and influence of the media. Also, media techniques and strategies used by government and political figures continue to change with the emergence of new technologies and the dominance of global media companies. Students learn how to think critically and analytically about the political press and how journalists and politicians frame public policy issues. This course looks critically at whether or not the American press is truly representative of the civic values of democracy, truth, and responsible citizenship. Prerequisites: COM 101 or POLS 101 or SOC 101.

X
Political Communication
3
COM314

COM314 - Magazine & Feature Writing

This course is focused on the longer pieces of magazine writing, such as feature articles and interview profiles, and other forms of narrative, nonfiction journalistic writing. The course includes reading, analyzing, and modeling well-written newspaper and magazine articles that entertain as well as inform readers. Students have the opportunity to provide editorial support for and submit feature articles for publication to Polished, a Lasell College produced magazine. Prerequisites: COM 101, COM 209.

X
Magazine & Feature Writing
3
COM316

COM316 - Publication Editing

This course is designed as a workshop in which students learn the fundamentals of editing for print and online publications. Students study and participate in various editing roles, including editorial director, articles editor, copy editor, proofreader and fact-checker. Students examine case studies of existing publications. In keeping with Lasell's Connected Learning approach, students propose work for Lasell's two student publications, The 1851 Chronicle and Polished, or other publications. The course focuses on learning to prepare cohesive editorial products with clear, compelling, professional content while avoiding common mistakes in usage, grammar, and style. Prerequisites: COM 101, COM 105.

X
Publication Editing
3
COM324

COM324 - Journalism II

This course, which is writing intensive, requires students to advance their writing and reporting (research) skills by covering a campus or community beat. This connected learning approach to journalism challenges students to do the work of the field as they report on student organizations, academic departments, or athletic teams, or local politics, sports, fashion, or culture. Assignments encourage students to take learning beyond the walls of the classroom while practicing journalism in the field. While encouraging students to deepen the basic skills of storytelling for print, the class also emphasizes new media platforms such as photo galleries, and video and audio news content. Students have the opportunity to contribute to the college newspaper and its website. Prerequisites: COM 105 and COM 209.

X
Journalism II
3
LS214

LS214 - Communication Law

This course provides students with a basic understanding of the law and governmental regulations that apply to communication practitioners. Course topics include the First Amendment, defamation and libel, invasion of privacy law, copyright, advertising regulation, obscenity, pornography, internet law, protecting “news sources” for journalists, FCC regulation of broadcasting, and the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Prerequisite: COM 101 or LS 101

X
Communication Law
3
Choose 1 from the following:

 

 

X
 
 
COM215

COM215 - Radio Production

This course introduces students to the basics of radio production. Students learn announcing techniques, the fundamentals of microphones and sound mixing, as well as the skills to produce quality radio. The course also provides a general overview of the behind-the-scenes radio business and industry. Projects include a news announcement, radio interview, public service announcement, and a short music format radio show. Much of this class takes place outside of the classroom at the Lasell College Radio station.

X
Radio Production
3
COM217

COM217 - Video Production

This course introduces students to the basics of video production. Students learn basic videography techniques using professional video cameras such as the SONY HVR-HD1000U. In addition to videography, students learn the basics of digital video editing using industry-standard Avid nonlinear editing programs. Video projects include a video camera roll test, Avid editing assignment, news package, and a short movie where students shoot, direct, and edit their own creative narrative.

X
Video Production
3
COM218

COM218 - Digital Video Editing

This course teaches students the basics of editing digital media using the popular software program Adobe Premiere Pro. The aesthetics of editing are also discussed and analyzed through screening various types of edited media. Projects for the course include editing TV commercials, news packages, movie scenes, and music videos. It is recommended that students have acquired basic computer skills prior to taking this class.

X
Digital Video Editing
3
COM304

COM304 - TV Studio Production

This course introduces the fundamentals of television production in a TV studio environment at NewTV - Newton's own public access television studios. Students learn pre-production planning, live-to-tape directing, and participate in full television crew rotations to produce high quality PSAs and their very own TV show to be aired on local access television. Throughout the semester, students develop a variety of production skills from hands-on television studio operation.

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TV Studio Production
3

Areas of Inquiry Courses:  Aesthetic 1, Historical 1, Psychological and Societal 1, Quantitative 1, Scientific 1

Additional Requirements: 9 credits
Choose one additional COM/BUSS Elective of GRAP207: 3 credits
Any 200-level ENG course: 3 credits
Additional Social Science Elective (SOC, PSYC, POLS, etc.): 3 credits

Communication students who have not declared a Concentration must complete all of the courses for the Major Requirements (29 credits), and ten (10) courses selected from the lists of courses under the Concentrations (30 credits).

General Education Core Requirements and remaining Unrestricted Electives: 55 credits

Minimum credits required for graduation: 120