* Note: Journalism Ethics and First Amendment Law (JOUR-UA 502) is no longer a required lecture course for the Journalism track of the Journalism major. For students, who took this course when it was once a required lecture course this course will now count as an elective.

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

Students who want to complete the Media Criticism track for the Journalism major will need to complete 8 courses for a total of 32 credits. Students pursuing the Media Criticism track need to complete 6 required courses (two lectures and four required skills courses). See below for more information.

Required Courses

Six total required courses

Two Required Lecture Courses

Investigating Journalism: Ethics and Practice (JOUR-UA 501)

Prerequisite: Expository Writing or the equivalent.

This is Journalism’s gateway course, a lecture centered on articles and primary historical documents that have had a profound impact on the course of American Journalism as practiced today. A series of essays designed to assess students’ understanding of important journalistic concepts and practices will be assigned.

Effective Fall 2017 students in the Investigating Journalism course will need to complete the following four modules to successfully complete the class: Module 1: The First Amendment, Module 2: To Publish or Not to Publish, Module 3: Ethics, and Module 4: Libel & Defamation.

History of the Media (JOUR-UA 610 – This class is only offered in the Spring term) or the equivalent when offered.

Prerequisite: Investigating Journalism (JOUR-UA 501).

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.

Four Required Skills Courses

Journalistic Inquiry: The Written Word (JOUR-UA 101)

Prerequisite: Investigating Journalism.

The Institute’s first level reporting class. Emphasis in this course throughout the term is on sophisticated reporting and research techniques as students concurrently survey the various forms of journalistic writing, from the essay, to the hard-news pyramid, to feature writing to broadcast style.

Effective Fall 2017 students in Journalistic Inquiry: The Written Word will need to complete Module 5: Source Deals and Module 6: Sources of Information in order to successfully complete the class.

Journalistic Inquiry: Multimedia (JOUR-UA 102)

Prerequisites: Investigating Journalism (JOUR-UA 501) and Journalistic Inquiry: The Written Word (JOUR-UA 101).

The Institute’s second level reporting class. Multimedia students will learn how to report news and feature stories, using photographs, video and audio, with the emphasis on story- telling techniques. The course will cover how to develop story ideas, reporting techniques, scripting, audio and visual digital editing, and multimedia story-telling structures. The course will be divided into three segments: audio, photography, and video designed for web production. Classes will incorporate lectures, including the “best practices” in audio and video; class discussion, and in and out-of-class assignments. Ethical and copyright issues involved in multimedia reporting will also be explored in the class.

* Note: To successfully complete the Inquiry Multimedia assignments students are required to purchase the following equipment and make arrangements to use the cameras and other equipment. Journalism majors will also use this equipment in other courses. There are no textbooks required for this course, although some suggested texts are optional/available.

The Beat: Designated Media Criticism Section (JOUR-UA 201 – This class is only offered in the Fall term)

Prerequisites: Journalistic Inquiry: The Written Word (JOUR-UA 101), Journalistic Inquiry (JOUR-UA 102), and History of Media (JOUR-UA 610) or the equivalent.

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 Ann 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. Students who participate in this class will need to purchase the following equipment.

Advanced Reporting: Designated Media Criticism Section (JOUR-UA 301 – This class is only offered in the Fall term)

Prerequisites: Investigating Journalism (JOUR-UA 501), History of the Media (JOUR-UA 610), Journalistic Inquiry: The Written Word (JOUR-UA 101), Journalistic Inquiry: Multimedia JOUR-UA 102), and The Beat: Designated Media Criticism Section (JOUR-UA 201)

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. Students who participate in this class will need to purchase the following equipment.


In addition to the six required courses (two lectures and four required skills courses), students completing the Media Criticism track in Journalism are expected to complete two more courses. One is a seminar, which may be selected from Topics in Media Criticism (JOUR-UA 622), a journalism seminar, or Journalism Ethics and First Amendment Law (JOUR-UA 502).

The other elective course can be taken from a list of Journalism elective offerings. For more information on current elective course see here. Some possible electives that may satisfy the elective requirement can be found below.

Topics in Media Criticism (JOUR-UA 622)

Journalism Ethics and First Amendment Law (JOUR-UA 502)

Any Journalism and Society course(JOUR-UA 503), such as Women and the Media, Minorities in the Media, and Covering the Earth.

Any Issues and Ideas course (JOUR-UA 505), such as Reporting in the Line of Fire

Journalism as Literature (JOUR-UA 504)

Any Seminar course (JOUR-UA 401), such as Entrepreneurial Journalism and The Journalism of Empathy

Honors Program

Juniors and Senior who have maintained a 3.65 overall GPA and a 3.65 in the Journalism major are eligible for the two-course, 8-point honors program. Students take a special section of Advanced Reporting (JOUR-UA 351) followed by the Senior Seminar (JOUR-UA 352) to complete a two-semester capstone project. Students enrolled in honors may take a maximum of 40 credits in Journalism. Students must begin the Honors program in the fall term.