Western Washington University · Bellingham, Washington
What is the study of Journalism?
Journalism is the work of supplying content, primarily news, for the ever-expanding world of mass media. Journalists are responsible for gathering information, analyzing and editing it for a mass audience, and dispensing it using some form of media platform. Increasingly the methods of distribution have become more complex, but the basic mission of a journalist remains the same: to serve the public by finding, defining, writing and editing information.
Today’s journalist may be found on traditional publications such as newspapers and magazines, broadcast outlets and specialized publications. He or she may utilize online delivery or other forms of electronic communication. The trained journalist may use her or his skills in the expanding field of public relations, working to serve as a bridge between those with a message to communicate and the journalist who seeks information.
Why Should I Consider this Major?
Few fields of study prepare a person for as wide a range of interesting and challenging careers. Journalists first and foremost learn to write, to accumulate and analyze information. This set of skills is in demand in a host of fields beyond traditional mass media.
The study of Journalism exposes a student to current affairs and problems, from issues of campus governance to international news and concerns. Journalism students are expected to question, to challenge sources of information and seek a variety of data and opinions on any serious issue.
Journalism students are given the daily opportunity to practice what they learn, in hands-on student publication laboratories, culminating in a professional internship. The Journalism faculty at Western are prepared both professionally and academically to help students enter this exciting career field.
Other Sequences or Concentrations:
"The visual journalism sequence has been my ideal college experience. It provides opportunity upon opportunity to not just study the subject matter, but to get out into the real world and experience it. The sequence isn't easy, but it's worth it, and between the faculty and my peers, I've had an excellent and caring support system to guide me through the program. With all the writing, photography, multimedia and design skills I've acquired throughout my experience in the sequence, I feel prepared and versatile enough to succeed in today's rapidly changing journalism landscape."
- Carey Rose, Student
"The Department of Journalism is professionally oriented and has a long tradition of preparing its students to work in the fields of journalism and public relations. The department has embraced digital technology and has integrated it throughout its courses. We're successfully preparing our students for traditional journalism jobs, such as in newspapers, but also for new positions that didn't even exist a few years ago."
- John M. Harris, Faculty
- Customer Service Representative
- Public Relations Specialist
- Community Relations Director
- TV News Anchor
- Speech Writer
- Advertising Copywriter
- Market Research Analyst
- Multimedia Producer
- All careers involving communication