About Studio 20

Today, few newsrooms can claim that their work has nothing to do with the internet whatsoever. Whether it’s the way information is collected, processed, distributed, or consumed, the digital era is forcing journalism to adapt, while simultaneously providing unlimited opportunity for experimentation and innovation.

The Studio 20 concentration at NYU is a master’s program with a focus on digital innovation and adapting journalism to the web. The curriculum emphasizes project-based learning. Students, faculty and visiting talent work on editorial, multimedia and web development projects together, typically with media partners who themselves need to find new approaches or face problems in succeeding online. By participating in these projects and later running their own project, students learn to grapple with all the challenges of the digital space. This approach also gives students a chance to build their portfolios, make connections within the journalism community in New York and acquire the skills required to work in — and lead — digital newsrooms.

The program seeks to draw together a diversely talented team of students who can produce excellent work that pushes the field forward and realizes some of the possibilities inherent in a multimedia, interactive and constantly evolving platform for journalism — namely, the World Wide Web and its mobile extensions.

Each year, Studio 20 recruits a mix of writers, editors, videographers, audio journalists, programmers, designers, Web producers and smart people who may have no journalism training at all, under the principle of: “Bring skills, share skills, learn new stuff.” Recruiting emphasizes students comfortable in more than one medium and ready to tackle new challenges. One of our mottos is: “Everyone works on everything.” Students are given basic training in a number of different skill sets, including but not limited to: video, coding, design, audience engagement, design thinking, user testing and project management. Based on their interests, they can choose to customize the program by selecting projects and roles that serve their needs.

The classes are conducted in a “studio” format where ideas and learnings are shared, so that the class as a whole benefits from each student’s research. Students are expected to be flexible and curious, generous in sharing skills, eager to pick up new knowledge and willing to adapt to what the projects demand. Another of our mottos is: “Paid in problems.” Students are trained to identify, research, understand and suggest innovative solutions for some of the toughest problems facing the journalism industry, through a mix of individual and group projects.

Our students get jobs in new media and old, forming a powerful alumni network that current students are encouraged to tap into. Our instructors have faced the digital transformation of journalism head on. In December of 2010, renowned Internet thinker Clay Shirky joined the Arthur L. Carter Institute and Studio 20, where he teaches courses and consults on projects.

Think you might be interested in applying? Email studio20.journalism@nyu.edu to let us know. Do tell us about yourself and your background and be sure to include how we can find you and your work on the web.

Studio 20 is a part of the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute, housed under New York University’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS). Here are the official instructions on how to apply to GSAS, and what the Studio 20 requirements are. The initial deadline is January 4; we will accept applications after that but cannot guarantee space or financial aid. Please note that taking the GRE General Exam is optional. If you plan on taking it, but cannot do so by January 3, you should submit your application by the deadline and take the GRE before March 1.

Here is a map showing where we are located, at 20 Cooper Square, New York, NY, 10003.

Follow professors Jay Rosen, Jason Samuels and Clay Shirky on Twitter, to get your digital thinking cap on.