Online Courses, Spring 2018

Course registration for Spring 2018 will open November 6.

Journalism 300 introduces students to basic reporting and newswriting skills, including interviewing, researching public records, fact-checking and much more. This class includes numerous reporting and writing assignments.

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@cpe.umass.edu) as soon as possible. 

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

Instructor: Steve Fox
Newswriting and Reporting
Journalism 300
01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

The roles and responsibilities of today's PR practitioners are expanding. PR Professionals must understand and embrace how to integrate social media communications with overall business communications, learn different ways to engage with customers and other stakeholders and navigate a changing media landscape with new technology that drives consumer news consumption. This course examines the role of today's communicators who are developing new strategic approaches to the practice of PR.  Students will learn how to research and evaluate various types of 2.0 collaborative technologies, monitor conversations for reputation and crisis management, develop social media objectives and strategies for integrated communications programs, create and manage the social media communications process, identify opportunities to engage via different networks, develop content for deeper interactions with stakeholders, and use different types of measurement to gauge communications success.  The class will focus on how to align strategic PR and social media programs with higher level business goals and objectives.

Instructor: Deirdre Breakenridge
S-Social Media and Public Relations
Journalism 391PR
01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

Public relations writing requires a narrative arc and good storytelling in which essential information gets delivered, along with a feeling of positive connection to an organization. Students in this course will learn how to translate an institutional mission statement into various narratives. They will learn how to gather information in a complex environment, and how to evaluate that information according to constituency needs. Writing projects will be required ranging from basic press releases and news briefs to interviews, speeches, profiles, a roundtable report, a position paper, first-person essays, and possibly a full-length magazine feature story. Course materials will include examples of excellent magazine writing, and books and articles on effective public relations programs. 

Pre-requisite: Journalism 300 Newswriting and Reporting

Instructor: Barbara (Lee) Wicks
S-Writing for Public Relations
Journalism 392P
01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

Students will become familiar with legal concepts underlying freedom of the press: censorship, obscenity, libel, privacy, free press/fair trial, contempt, access and other legal problems affecting the mass media. The case study approach generally is used, but emphasis is on the principles and philosophy underlying various aspects of communication law as these affect the daily work of journalists.

Instructor: Karen List
Journalism and Law
Journalism 445
01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

This class will help you learn what makes magazine journalism different from newspaper journalism. Unlike newspaper writing, magazines often demand that a journalist bring both authority and a point of view to the work. We workshop each student's paper, so each student is expected to think as an editor as well as a writer. There is substantial reading required from magazine anthologies, plus your fellow students' work. We will learn how to do the type of research necessary to produce a magazine article, and work hard to improve writing and analytical skills. Weekly writing and reporting assignments, plus one 3000-4000 word magazine feature that will require extensive field work and interviewing.

Instructor: Connie Griffin
Magazine Writing
Journalism 492M
01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

Online Courses, Fall 2014

300 Newswriting and Reporting (Fox)

01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

Journalism 300 introduces students to basic reporting and newswriting skills, including interviewing, researching public records, fact-checking and much more. This class includes numerous reporting and writing assignments.

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@cpe.umass.edu) as soon as possible. 

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


391PR S-Social Media and Public Relations (Breakenridge)

01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

The roles and responsibilities of today's PR practitioners are expanding. PR Professionals must understand and embrace how to integrate social media communications with overall business communications, learn different ways to engage with customers and other stakeholders and navigate a changing media landscape with new technology that drives consumer news consumption. This course examines the role of today's communicators who are developing new strategic approaches to the practice of PR.  Students will learn how to research and evaluate various types of 2.0 collaborative technologies, monitor conversations for reputation and crisis management, develop social media objectives and strategies for integrated communications programs, create and manage the social media communications process, identify opportunities to engage via different networks, develop content for deeper interactions with stakeholders, and use different types of measurement to gauge communications success.  The class will focus on how to align strategic PR and social media programs with higher level business goals and objectives.


392P S-Writing for Public Relations (Wicks)

01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

Public relations writing requires a narrative arc and good storytelling in which essential information gets delivered, along with a feeling of positive connection to an organization. Students in this course will learn how to translate an institutional mission statement into various narratives. They will learn how to gather information in a complex environment, and how to evaluate that information according to constituency needs. Writing projects will be required ranging from basic press releases and news briefs to interviews, speeches, profiles, a roundtable report, a position paper, first-person essays, and possibly a full-length magazine feature story. Course materials will include examples of excellent magazine writing, and books and articles on effective public relations programs. 

Pre-requisite: Journalism 300 Newswriting and Reporting


445 Journalism and Law (List)

01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

Students will become familiar with legal concepts underlying freedom of the press: censorship, obscenity, libel, privacy, free press/fair trial, contempt, access and other legal problems affecting the mass media. The case study approach generally is used, but emphasis is on the principles and philosophy underlying various aspects of communication law as these affect the daily work of journalists.


492M Magazine Writing (Griffin)

01/22/2018 to 05/01/2018

This class will help you learn what makes magazine journalism different from newspaper journalism. Unlike newspaper writing, magazines often demand that a journalist bring both authority and a point of view to the work. We workshop each student's paper, so each student is expected to think as an editor as well as a writer. There is substantial reading required from magazine anthologies, plus your fellow students' work. We will learn how to do the type of research necessary to produce a magazine article, and work hard to improve writing and analytical skills. Weekly writing and reporting assignments, plus one 3000-4000 word magazine feature that will require extensive field work and interviewing.