Online Courses, Winter and Spring Terms

Course registration is open for the Winter '20/'21 session. Spring '21 course registration will open on Nov. 2, 2020.

This course introduces students to public relations as a strategic communication management process in the private, public and non-profit sectors. Students will explore the history and modern development of the field, as well as relevant theory, law, ethics and practices targeting various publics and stakeholders. The course also will address career opportunities and skills necessary for successful professional practice. 

Instructor: Jennie Donohue
Introduction to Public Relations
Journalism 235
02/01/2021 to 05/04/2021

In this course, students will become more discerning consumers of news. Students will use critical-thinking skills to determine what news sources are reliable in the digital world. Through readings, class discussions, and written assignments, students will deconstruct stories to determine those that are well-sourced and can be considered real news. Students will also discuss concepts such as objectivity, opinion, bias and fairness, and how all contribute to the mix of news reports in today's digital landscape.

Instructor: Steve Fox
News Literacy
Journalism 250
02/01/2021 to 05/04/2021

This course introduces students to the basic requirements of news writing and reporting, including interviewing, covering news events, speeches and press conferences, public records, and more. Students will complete a variety of in-class and outside reporting assignments in a journalistic style.

Prerequisite for matriculated UMass Amherst students: EngWrit 112. If you are not a regular UMass Amherst student and you would like to enroll in Journ 300, please contact the UMass CPE Records & Registration Office (413-545-3653 or regoff@uww.umass.edu) as soon as possible. 

This is a required course to earn the Certificate of Journalism.

Instructor: Razvan Sibii
Newswriting and Reporting
Journalism 300
12/07/2020 to 01/16/2021

This course focuses on ethical journalism — no matter the medium—and its pivotal role in a democratic society. It aims to help those who plan to become journalists make ethical decisions and to help those who are consumers of the news recognize responsible journalism at a time when it is more important than ever to give voice to the voiceless and hold the powerful accountable. Students will develop an ability to understand and evaluate the ethical decisions that journalists make every day and the consequences of those decisions. As journalism's role in society, its values, and its best practices are all undergoing radical transformations, students will become familiar with traditional codes of ethics in areas such as accuracy, fairness, diversity, sources, conflicts of interest and privacy. But the course also will emphasize the need for students to create their own systems of ethics – principles students have thought through and are always ready to apply, explain and defend.

Instructor: Razvan Sibii
Journalism Ethics
Journalism 460
02/01/2021 to 05/04/2021

This four-credit writing course introduces students to the different forms of magazine writing, including short features and essays, longer-form pieces, first-person narratives, profiles, and human-interest feature stories. Students will generate story ideas, develop research strategies, cultivate sources, research markets, and submit queries for publication in print and online formats. Students will read and discuss articles from a range of popular, literary, and trade magazines, and, in a community of peer writers, they will write, review and revise several works of their own.

Instructor: Connie Griffin
Magazine Writing
Journalism 492M
02/01/2021 to 05/04/2021

Online Courses, Fall 2014

235 Introduction to Public Relations (Donohue)

02/01/2021 to 05/04/2021

This course introduces students to public relations as a strategic communication management process in the private, public and non-profit sectors. Students will explore the history and modern development of the field, as well as relevant theory, law, ethics and practices targeting various publics and stakeholders. The course also will address career opportunities and skills necessary for successful professional practice. 


250 News Literacy (Fox)

02/01/2021 to 05/04/2021

In this course, students will become more discerning consumers of news. Students will use critical-thinking skills to determine what news sources are reliable in the digital world. Through readings, class discussions, and written assignments, students will deconstruct stories to determine those that are well-sourced and can be considered real news. Students will also discuss concepts such as objectivity, opinion, bias and fairness, and how all contribute to the mix of news reports in today's digital landscape.


300 Newswriting and Reporting (Sibii)

12/07/2020 to 01/16/2021

This course introduces students to the basic requirements of news writing and reporting, including interviewing, covering news events, speeches and press conferences, public records, and more. Students will complete a variety of in-class and outside reporting assignments in a journalistic style.

Prerequisite for matriculated UMass Amherst students: EngWrit 112. If you are not a regular UMass Amherst student and you would like to enroll in Journ 300, please contact the UMass CPE Records & Registration Office (413-545-3653 or regoff@uww.umass.edu) as soon as possible. 

This is a required course to earn the Certificate of Journalism.


460 Journalism Ethics (Sibii)

02/01/2021 to 05/04/2021

This course focuses on ethical journalism — no matter the medium—and its pivotal role in a democratic society. It aims to help those who plan to become journalists make ethical decisions and to help those who are consumers of the news recognize responsible journalism at a time when it is more important than ever to give voice to the voiceless and hold the powerful accountable. Students will develop an ability to understand and evaluate the ethical decisions that journalists make every day and the consequences of those decisions. As journalism's role in society, its values, and its best practices are all undergoing radical transformations, students will become familiar with traditional codes of ethics in areas such as accuracy, fairness, diversity, sources, conflicts of interest and privacy. But the course also will emphasize the need for students to create their own systems of ethics – principles students have thought through and are always ready to apply, explain and defend.


492M Magazine Writing (Griffin)

02/01/2021 to 05/04/2021

This four-credit writing course introduces students to the different forms of magazine writing, including short features and essays, longer-form pieces, first-person narratives, profiles, and human-interest feature stories. Students will generate story ideas, develop research strategies, cultivate sources, research markets, and submit queries for publication in print and online formats. Students will read and discuss articles from a range of popular, literary, and trade magazines, and, in a community of peer writers, they will write, review and revise several works of their own.