Communication: Journalism (BA)
Offered by the School of Communication.
Admission to the Program
Formal admission to the major requires a cumulative grade point average of 2.50 (on a 4.00 scale). Students should declare their major by the end of the sophomore year and no earlier than the end of their first semester.
Students who are unable to achieve a cumulative grade point average of 2.50 and declare a major in communication are not allowed to take courses in the school after they have completed 60 hours of undergraduate credit.
- 120 credit hours with a cumulative GPA of 2.00 or better
- Completion of college writing requirement
- Completion of university mathematics requirement
General Education Requirements
- A total of ten courses, consisting of two courses from each of the five foundational areas
- At least one course from Area Five: The Natural and Mathematical Sciences must include a laboratory science component
- No more than two courses may be taken in the same discipline
- 42 credit hours with grades of C or better within the School of Communication including core, professional, media studies, internship, independent study, and independent reading courses.
- With approval of the student's advisor, up to 6 credit hours taken abroad may be applied toward the communication major requirements.
- With approval of the student's advisor, a maximum of 12 credit hours in communication transferred from another university may be substituted for required communication courses.
- Related requirements taken outside the School of Communication with grades of C or better. Note: These courses are not included in the major GPA.
- 3 credit hours in United States history (HIST-xxx).
- 3 credit hours in economics (ECON-xxx).
- A minor or second major outside the School of Communication.
- Minimum of 72 credit hours outside the field of communication.
- Transfer students majoring in journalism are required to graduate with a total of 72 credit hours outside the field of communication.
- Minimum 2.50 cumulative GPA.
Complete the following with grades of C or better:
United States History
Complete 3 credit hours from the following:
- HIST-130 History of American Popular Culture (3) (3)
- HIST-205 American Encounters: 1492-1865 FA2 (3) (3)
- HIST-206 U.S. History since 1865 (3) (3)
- HIST-208 African-American History: to 1877 (3) (3)
- HIST-209 African-American History: 1877 to Present (3) (3)
- HIST-210 Ethnicity in America FA4 (3) (3)
- HIST-215 Social Forces that Shaped America FA2 (3) (3)
- HIST-219 Women in America to 1850 (3) (3)
- HIST-220 Women in America since 1850 FA4 (3) (3)
- HIST-235 The West in Crisis, 1900-1945 FA2 (3) (3)
- HIST-288 Oliver Stone's America (3) (3)
Complete 3 credit hours from the following:
- ECON-100 Macroeconomics FA4 (3) (3)
- ECON-110 The Global Majority FA3 (3) (3)
- ECON-200 Microeconomics FA4 (3) (3)
Outside Minor or Second Major
- Minor or second major outside the School of Communication
Communication Requirements (42 credit hours)
Core (24 credit hours)
- COMM-100 Understanding Media FA4 (3) (3)
- COMM-200 Writing for Communication (3) (3)
- COMM-260 Quantitative Methods and Data Visualization (3) (3)
- COMM-305 Digital Skills (3) (3)
- COMM-320 Reporting (3) (3)
- COMM-401 Communication Law (3) (3)
- COMM-409 Journalism Ethics (3) (3)
- COMM-425 Advanced Reporting (3) (3)
Electives (18 credit hours)
Complete 9 credit hours from the following, of which only 6 credit hours can be Internship.
- COMM-105 Visual Literacy FA1 (3) (3)
- COMM-291 Communication Field Experience (1) (1)
- COMM-325 Feature Article Writing (3) (3)
- COMM-330 Principles of Photography (3) (3)
- COMM-385 Digital Audio Production (3) (3)
- COMM-391 Communication Careers Internship (2) (2)
- COMM-418 Data-Driven Journalism (3) (3)
- COMM-419 In-Depth Journalism (3) (3)
- COMM-420 Topics in Mass Media (3) (3) :
Health and Environmental Reporting
Fundamentals of News Design
Visual Strategies for News
- COMM-422 Writing and Editing for Convergent Media (3) (3)
- COMM-426 Sports Writing and Reporting (3) (3)
- COMM-428 Advanced Television and Video Production (3) (3)
- COMM-432 Backpack Video Journalism (3) (3)
- COMM-491 Senior Professional Internship (3) (3)
- COMM-500 Investigative Journalism Practicum (3) (3)
- COMM-521 Opinion Writing (3) (3)
- COMM-545 Business and Economic Journalism (3) (3)
- COMM-560 Backpack Documentary (3) (3)
- COMM-588 Race, Ethnic, and Community Reporting (3) (3)
Complete 9 credit hours from the following:
- COMM-270 How the News Media Shape History FA2 (3) (3)
- COMM-275 Dissident Media: Voices from the Underground FA4 (3) (3)
- COMM-280 Contemporary Media in a Global Society FA3 (3) (3)
- COMM-322 Editorial Policies and Methods (3) (3)
- COMM-326 Sports Journalism (3) (3)
- COMM-359 Decisive Moments in Communication (3) (3)
- COMM-360 Myths of the Media (3) (3)
- COMM-365 Digital Media and Culture (3) (3)
- COMM-411 History of Documentary (3) (3)
- COMM-415 Children, Youth, and Digital Culture (3) (3)
- COMM-416 Topics in Film and Media Arts (3) (3) with permission of the student's advisor
- COMM-420 Topics in Mass Media (3) (3) : Wikipedia and Public Knowledge
- COMM-433 Broadcast Delivery (3) (3)
- COMM-443 Foreign Policy and the Press (3) (3)
- COMM-490 Independent Study Project in Communication (1-6) (1-6)
- COMM-503 Broadcast and Multimedia Journalism Management (3) (3)
- COMM-509 Politics and the Media (3) (3)
- COMM-514 Censorship and Media (3) (3)
- COMM-538 Contemporary Media Issues (3) (3)
Combined Bachelor's and Master's Degrees
American University offers students the opportunity to earn both undergraduate and graduate degrees through its combined bachelor's/master's programs. See Combined Bachelor's and Master's Degrees for more information.