Course Descriptions

New for pre-Journalism and general Arts students:

JRN 100 Introduction to Journalism and Democracy

An introduction to how journalists do their work and their role in democratic development. Press freedom in a global context, including the relationship of journalism to fundamental human rights. Critical examination of journalism within shifting centres of media power.

Also open to all students: JRN 302 Rights and Responsibilities; JRN 308 Contemporary Issues in Journalism; JRN 312 Photojournalism; JRN 415 International Media; and JRN 482 Indigenous People and the Press. See below for descriptions of these courses.

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Degree courses

JRN 300 – Introduction to Print Journalism 

Study and practice of newsgathering fundamentals and principles in reporting for newspapers and their websites. A focus on information gathering, clear, complete, accurate and fair story writing to deadlines, the essentials of headline writing, page layout and editing according to Canadian Press style guidelines followed in newspapers across the country. *** Prerequisite: Admission to the School of Journalism. ***

JRN 301 – Introduction to Broadcast Journalism
Study and practice of newsgathering, writing and reporting for radio and television. A focus on the development of broadcast specific skills to understand and relay the daily events and issues of public importance as presented in a broadcast news format. *** Prerequisite: Admission to the School of Journalism. ***

JRN 302 – Rights and Responsibilities of the Journalist – OPEN TO ALL STUDENTS
A critical look at the social role and ethical responsibilities of the media. An introduction to journalistic responsibilities and legal parameters, including court reporting, image use, libel and slander, protecting sources, etc. A focus on understanding journalist rights, including freedom of expression, access to information, and the justice system. ***Prerequisite: Completion of 30 credit hours, or admission to the School of Journalism.***

JRN 303 – Research Techniques for Journalists
An introduction to well-researched reporting, including fundamental approaches to finding sources, using libraries and archives, fact checking, and analyzing and translating complex information for a mass audience. *** Prerequisite: Admission to the School of Journalism. ***

JRN 304 – Foundations of Interviewing for Journalists
Foundations of Interviewing for Journalists An introduction to the fundamentals of conducting successful interviews. A focus on interview techniques and style, accurate note-taking, the process of re-telling people¿s stories, placing interviews within narrative structure, handling ethical dilemmas, active listening, understanding memory and human psychology, and the analysis of live and taped interviews will be examined. *** Prerequisite: Admission to the School of Journalism. ***

JRN 305 – Intermediate Print Journalism
Continuing study and practice of newsgathering and writing for daily news, with in-depth reporting on current issues. A focus on beat coverage, editing and production, feature preparation, backgrounders, analysis pieces, and style guidelines. A critical study of Canadian newspapers through analysis, examination and debate of examples of excellent journalism. *** Prerequisite: JRN 300 ***

JRN 306 – Intermediate Broadcast Journalism
Continuing study and practice of newsgathering, writing and reporting for radio and television. A focus on longer form reporting for broadcast, with specific attention on the skills to fit in-depth analysis and commentary of public issues into a variety of broadcast formats ranging from talk tapes to mini documentaries. *** Prerequisite: JRN 301 ***

JRN 307 – Investigative Journalism
The history and social role of investigative journalism. Students will explore investigative tools and techniques, including accessing public information, approaching and interviewing hostile sources, computer assisted reporting, online resources, ethical pitfalls, journalistic numeracy, avoiding legal problems, ensuring accuracy, fact-checking and security. *** Prerequisite: JRN 303 and JRN 304 ***

JRN 308 – Contemporary Issues in Journalism – OPEN TO ALL STUDENTS
This course examines selected topics of importance to journalists, and aims to promote critical responses to journalistic issues, interpreting and disseminating information about an increasingly complex world, technological advances in reporting, and developing journalistic fluency in a mediated culture. *** Prerequisite: JRN 100 and completion of 30 credit hours, or admission to the School of Journalism. ***

JRN 312 – Photojournalism – OPEN TO ALL STUDENTS
A detailed examination of the photojournalist’s role in the news gathering process. A focus on communicating through digital imagery and the power of visual storytelling, with an emphasis on practical techniques and ethical image editing. ***Prerequisite: JRN 100 and completion of 30 credit hours, or admission to the School of Journalism.*** *** *Note: Each student is required to have an entry level DSLR camera and basic editing software such as Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom*

JRN 400 – Internship
Internship is a term served in the field in a work/study capacity. Students select prospective internships and are interviewed for placements in news and/or communications; however, final decisions on placements are at the discretion of the School. Students must accept placements as assigned. ***Prerequisite: Satisfactory completion of JRN 300, JRN 301, JRN 302, JRN 303, and JRN 304.*** *Note: Internships are offered in the Spring/Summer or Fall term.*

JRN 401 – Advanced Print Journalism
This fourth-semester course focuses on specialized reporting of news and current affairs, and writing of opinion pieces and editorials. Students are expected to bring an analytical approach to the course following the internship experience, monitor major print media coverage of particular issues, and research and investigate publishable stories independently. *** Prerequisite: JRN 300 and JRN 305 ***

JRN 402 – Advanced Broadcast Journalism
Advanced study and practice of current affairs, news gathering, writing, and reporting for the broadcast media. Students are expected to bring an analytical approach to the course following the internship experience, monitor major broadcast media coverage of particular issues, and research and investigate stories independently. *** Prerequisite: JRN 301 and JRN 306 ***

JRN 411 – Documentary Theory and Production
Introduction to the theory, practice and production of broadcast documentaries. An examination of historical and contemporary perspectives, focusing on practical elements of documentary making, including researching, writing, visual and aural literacy, and technical applications. Working in small groups, students are responsible for the production of a substantial documentary. *** Prerequisite: JRN 301 and JRN 306, or permission of the Department Head ***

JRN 413 – Magazine Writing and Literary Journalism
An intensive writing seminar/workshop with a focus on developing the creative voice and applying literary techniques to journalistic writing while maintaining accuracy and meeting deadlines. A detailed examination of the roots of New Journalism, creative non-fiction, literary journalism, self-directed journalism and the freelance environment. ***Prerequisite: JRN 300 and JRN 305.***

JRN 415 – International Media – OPEN TO ALL STUDENTS
Students will study the role of media in the processes of globalization and development, with a focus on learning journalistic skills and practices accepted in and by the media of different countries, as well as on reporting world events and issues in media outside Canada. ***Prerequisite: Completion of 30 credit hours, or admission to the School of Journalism.***

JRN 417 – Specialized Reporting
An advanced course focusing on an examination of one form of Beat Reporting. The focus may include: sports, arts, science, religion, aboriginal affairs, medicine, business, environment, education, labour, and/or lifestyle reporting. *** Prerequisite: Completion of 60 credit hours or permission of Department Head. ***

JRN 480 – Selected Topics
Courses designed as required for groups of students.

JRN 482 – Indigenous People and the Press – OPEN TO ALL STUDENTS
This course investigates the fairness, accuracy and inclusion of Indigenous representations in the media. Topics range from under-representation and under-reporting of Indigenous issues, media cultural imperialism, negative stereotypes, and reporting challenges and alternatives. ***Prerequisite: Completion of 30 credit hours, or admission to the School of Journalism.*** *Note: Formerly numbered JRN 480AB. Students may receive credit for only one of JRN 480AB or JRN 482.* *Note: Students who complete this course may not also take JRN 882 for credit in a graduate program.*

JRN 480AC – The Journalist’s Role in Reconciliation
Students will look at the role Journalists can play in Reconciliation, as well as explore how perspectives can often be lost even when all the right characters are included in the story. The goal of the course will be to gain an understanding of the different forms of reconciliation, the history that lead us to this need for this reconciliation, and learn how the inclusion of Indigenous perspectives in all stories is essential. ***Prerequisite: Completion of 60 credit hours and permission from the Department Head.***

JRN 799 – Journalism Ethics and Professional Standards Review
This online course tests student’s understanding of ethical/legal standards in Canadian journalism. Topics include plagiarism, libel, information rights, publication bans, ethical interviewing, Indigenous protocols, protection of sources, use of images, due diligence, and other foundational standards of practice in a Canadian context. *Note: Successful completion required in first semester of program.*

JRN 800 – Research Methods in Journalism
This class is designed to explore different research approaches useful for graduate journalism students. Students will get acquainted with qualitative, quantitative and applied journalistic methods, and will work toward developing a project proposal.

JRN 801 – Advanced News Writing
This course focuses on in-depth reporting of news and feature writing. Students will also write opinion pieces and pursue topics of interest while monitoring media coverage of current affairs. *Note: Students may receive credit for one of JRN 801 and JRN 401.*

JRN 802 – Digital Radio News Journalism
Advanced study and practice in digital radio news. Students are expected to bring an analytical approach to the course through preparing research reports and will produce radio shows for CJTR, current affairs long stories, and podcast episodes. *Note: Students may receive credit for one of JRN 802 and JRN 402.*

JRN 810 – Advanced Journalism History: The Western tradition and Canadian experience
This course investigates the historic evolution and importance of mass communications and journalism in democratic life. It focuses on the Western tradition and Canadian context. Readings and lectures focus on the contradictory historic role of journalism and media institutions as agents of social change and social control.

JRN 811 – Documentary Theory and Production
Explore the human condition through telling creative, in-depth and compelling stories as a means for social change. You will produce a substantive documentary experimenting with multiple forms of media, form, content and personal points of view. Your project will be supported by studies in documentary history, ethics and theory. *Note: Students may receive credit for one of JRN 811 and JRN 411.*

JRN 812 – Photojournalism
A detailed examination of the photojournalist’s role in the news gathering process. A focus on communicating through digital imagery and the power of visual storytelling, with an emphasis on practical techniques and ethical image editing. *Note: Students may receive credit for one of JRN 812 and JRN 312.*

JRN 813 – Magazine and Literary Journalism
An intensive writing seminar/workshop with a focus on developing the creative voice and applying literary conventions to journalistic writing while maintaining accuracy and meeting deadlines. A detailed examination of the roots of New Journalism, creative non-fiction, literary journalism, self-directed journalism and the freelance environment. *Note: Students may receive credit for one of JRN 813 and JRN 413.*

JRN 815 – International Media
Graduate students will study the role of media in the processes of globalization and development, with a focus on learning journalistic skills and practices accepted in and by the media of different countries, issues in the media outside of Canada, and communication in an international context. *Note: Students may receive credit for one of JRN 815 and JRN 415.*

JRN 818 – Master’s Workshop on Journalism Projects
Students will circulate and present the advanced journalism project proposals they finalized in the fall term. Each weekly workshop will focus on one or two projects and will be conducted under the supervision of the presenting student’s faculty supervisor(s). All school faculty and students will be encouraged to attend and participate.

JRN 819 – Alternative and Community Journalism
An examination of the emergence of independent journalism within the context of global media, with a focus on the connection to social movements and social change. Emphasis on alternative and community media in theory and practice, with hands-on learning experiences provided. *Note: Students may receive credit for one of JRN 819 and JRN 419.*

JRN 880 – Advanced Journalism Theory: Key perspectives in journalism, media and cultural studies
This seminar explores the paradigms, theorists and key concepts that form journalism’s philosophical foundations. It examines professional principles and draws from fields such as the sociology of journalism, political economy of media and media-cultural studies to strengthen professional practice and newsroom leadership.

JRN 881 – Selected Topics AA-ZZ
Courses designed as required for groups of students.

JRN 882 – Indigenous People and the Press
This course investigates the fairness, accuracy and inclusion of Indigenous representations in the media. Topics range from under-representation and under-reporting of Indigenous issues, media cultural imperialism, negative stereotypes, and reporting challenges and alternatives. *Note: Students may receive credit for one of JRN 882, JRN 482, or JRN 480AB.*

JRN 902 – Professional Project
In consultation with a supervisor, students will complete a substantial work of public affairs journalism that will advance journalism practice. Projects are carried out with the intention of publishing, broadcast, or other forms of public dissemination and must adhere to professional standards and ethics.