Curriculum

The concentration in Media Criticism consists of 8-9 courses, for a total of 32-36 credits. All Journalism majors must also complete a second major within CAS, as outlined in the General Requirements for the major.

Note: Students wishing to also enroll in NYU’s Study Abroad program must begin the Media Criticism concentration no later than their sophomore year in order to complete the program.

Typical full-time course of study

Fall Semester I

Spring Semester I

Fall Semester II

Spring Semester II

One required lecture

Investigating Journalism JOUR-UA 501 No prerequisites. For the Journalism major and the prospective Journalism major. 
This is Journalism’s gateway course, a lecture centered on articles and primary historical documents that have had profound impact on the course of American Journalism as practiced today. In addition, recitation sections will meet once a week for further discussion of the readings and the writing of a series of essays designed to assess students’ understanding of important journalistic concepts and practices, as well as their potential as writers and reporters preparing for leadership in the field.

One required Media Criticism seminar

History of the Media
JOUR-UA 610 Prerequisite: Investigating Journalism. Offered only in the Spring term.
A historical survey of the media from language and the earliest uses of images to the Web. The emphasis, in an attempt to gain perspective on our own communications revolution, is on the reception, uses, and political, social, and philosophical consequences of different forms of communication.

Three required skills courses

Journalistic Inquiry
JOUR-UA 101 Prerequisite: Investigating Journalism
First-level reporting. Emphasis in this course throughout the term is on sophisticated reporting and research technique as students concurrently survey the various forms of journalistic writing, from the essay, to the hard-news pyramid, to feature writing to broadcast style.
The Beat: Media Criticism
JOUR-UA 201 Prerequisites: Journalistic Inquiry and History of the Media. Offered only in the Fall term.
If the press monitors the powers that be, who keeps a vigilant eye on the fourth estate, a power unto itself? The “beat,” in this case, is the newsmedia themselves. In this course, we delve deep into the issues and ideas that have engaged critics of the newsmedia throughout the modern era, from I.F. Stone to Ben Bagdikian, Noam Chomsky to Anne Coulter. More profoundly, we deconstruct their analytical methods and lay bare their agendas, critiquing the critics. This course involves a significant writing load, most of which will incorporate both academic argument and journalistic reportage.
Advanced Reporting: Media Criticism
JOUR-UA 301 Prerequisite:  The Beat: Media Criticism. Offered only in the Spring term.
Advanced Reporting: Media Criticism is the concentration’s capstone course, focusing on new media and the new conceptual paradigms implicit in them. Drawing on the body of theoretical and historical knowledge students have accumulated in the concentration, New Forms will ask students not only to analyze new forms of media, but to conduct their own experiments, exploring the expressive possibilities of various media. In the end, students will be expected to produce a long-form critique, heavily reported and rigorously argued, of a media-related issue. The project can be produced in print; online/interactive media; or other, experimental forms. As with all work in the concentration, the capstone project should engage the public mind, rather than an academic audience.

One required journalism seminar elective

Students must choose one journalism seminar course from the following list of theory/issues/history or media criticism offerings:

In addition to the six required courses listed above, Media Criticism students must choose two or three additional courses from the entire list of Institute electives to complete the 32 to 36 credits needed for the major.