Journalism Major Admission Standards and Requirements

JOURNALISM MAJOR INFORMATION AND REQUIREMENTS FOR CURRENT STUDENTS

Convergence Core Curriculum

The USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism offers Bachelor of Arts degrees in broadcast and digital journalism, print and digital journalism, and public relations. The school utilizes a convergence core curriculum that prepares students for careers in an industry where print, broadcast and online journalism are drawing closer together.

Students learn the writing, reporting and editing skills necessary to compete successfully as a working journalist. The curriculum stresses the ability to reason logically from a sound historical perspective, report for all three types of media, understand media law, and value media’s social responsibility.

The School of Journalism seeks to provide students with a broad education, combining the traditional liberal arts with the professional skills–including new media–necessary for a rewarding career.

Print and Digital Journalism

Print and digital journalism students learn how to think critically and write effectively under the pressure of tight deadlines. They develop a sense of news judgment and the ability to integrate information from a variety of sources into one coherent report. Our students learn by doing as they get hands-on training in newswriting, reporting and editing. Many print and digital journalism majors start their on-the-job training by writing for the
Daily Trojan , USC’s student newspaper, Intersections South LA , a student-run news site focusing on Los Angeles, or Neon Tommy , USC Annenberg’s digital news site.

Broadcast and Digital Journalism

Broadcast and digital journalism students learn how to think critically and work in a range of news, public affairs, documentary and electronic formats. Using digital equipment, students hone their skills in areas such as television news, documentary production, investigative reporting and broadcast newswriting. Broadcast and digital journalism majors begin their hands-on training by working in the field with video cameras and producing reports using industry-standard nonlinear digital editing systems. Their work appears as segments on
Annenberg TV News , our nightly half-hour newscast, Annenberg Radio News , our student-run news station, and Impact , our television news magazine show. Both programs are written, produced, reported and anchored by journalism students.

Public Relations

Public relations—sometimes called strategic communication—is a dynamic, fast-growing discipline found in organizations of all types, including non-profits, entertainment firms, sports teams, social action groups, universities and Fortune 500 companies. Its purpose is to help those organizations achieve their goals by maintaining healthy relationships with their most important audiences. Practitioners use a wide variety of creative strategies and tactics, including both digital/social media and traditional mass media, as their most important tools. Every day thousands of PR professionals rely on the training they received at USC Annenberg to analyze trends, develop and implement sophisticated programs, and counsel senior management. Internships with leading PR agencies, non-profit organizations, entertainment companies and government agencies provide real-world experience that prepares students for successful careers.

Major Requirements

Grammar, Spelling and Punctuation Online Tutorial

The Grammar, Spelling and Punctuation online tutorial is a review of your ability to use language accurately and at a level high enough to succeed at the School of Journalism.

Broadcast and Digital Journalism and Print and Digital Journalism majors must complete the GSP online tutorial during the semester in which they first take JOUR 202 Newswriting: Print and JOUR 203 Newswriting: Broadcast. Public Relations majors must complete the tutorial during the semester in which they first take JOUR 209 Effective Writing for Strategic Public Relations.

You will begin the GSP online tutorial sometime during the semester in JOUR 202 or JOUR 209. It will last eight weeks and should be completed by the last day of class.

Students who do not complete the online tutorial will not be allowed to progress in the program.

Broadcast and Digital Journalism Requirements
(44 units)

JOUR 201
     History of News in Modern America (4 units)
JOUR 202
     Newswriting: Print (3 units)
JOUR 203
     Newswriting: Broadcast (3 units)
JOUR 302
    Reporting: Print (3 units)
JOUR 303
    Reporting: Broadcast (3 units)
JOUR 306
    Production: Broadcast (3 units)
JOUR 309
    Introduction to Online Media (3 units)
JOUR 310
    Investigative Reporting (4 units)
JOUR 462
    Law of Mass Communication (4 units)

Two courses from (8 units):

JOUR 402
    Advanced Television Reporting
JOUR 403
    Television News Production
JOUR 405
    Non-Fiction Television
JOUR 409
    Radio News Production

Plus six upper division journalism elective units.

Print and Digital Journalism Requirements
(44 units)

JOUR 201
    History of News in Modern America (4 units)
JOUR 202
    Newswriting: Print (3 units)            
JOUR 203     Newswriting: Broadcast (3 units)
JOUR 302
    Reporting: Print (3 units)
JOUR 303
    Reporting: Broadcast (3 units)
JOUR 308
    Newspaper Editing and Design (3 units)
JOUR 309
    Introduction to Online Media (3 units)
JOUR 310
    Investigative Reporting (4 units)
JOUR 462
    Law of Mass Communication (4 units)

Two courses from (8 units):

JOUR 431
    Feature Writing
JOUR 435
    Writing Magazine Non-Fiction
JOUR 440
    Environmental Journalism
JOUR 448
    Government and Public Affairs Reporting
JOUR 476      Reporting Urban Affairs

Plus six upper division journalism elective units.

Public Relations Requirements (2012-PRESENT)
(44 units)

JOUR 209
     Effective Writing for Strategic Public Relations
JOUR 250
     Strategic Public Relations: An Introduction
JOUR 253
     Theoretical Foundations of Strategic Public Relations
JOUR 351a
   Strategic Public Relations Media and Content I
JOUR 351b
   Strategic Public Relations Media and Content II
JOUR 463
     Strategic Public Relations Research, Analysis and Insight
JOUR 428
     Social, Legal and Ethical Foundations of Strategic Public Relations
JOUR 429
     Business and Economic Foundations of Strategic Public Relations            
JOUR 450      Advanced Strategic Public Relations

Plus eight upper division journalism elective units.

Accreditation Requirement

To meet accrediting guidelines, journalism and public relations majors must complete minimum of 72 units outside the major area of journalism.

For more information regarding major requirements for the Annenberg School of Journalism, please visit the
USC Catalogue .

The USC Annenberg Advantage

Faculty

School of Journalism faculty members are among the top professionals in their fields. They include renowned researchers, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists, Emmy Award and Peabody Award-winning broadcast journalists, and leaders in fields including government, advertising and public relations. For information on our faculty, click
here .

Academic Advisement

All undergraduate journalism majors are required to meet with a
USC Annenberg undergraduate adviser each semester to review degree requirements and plan their journalism major progress. Students must use their USC email accounts to receive advisement information, scholarship announcements and CommLine OnLine , USC Annenberg’s electronic newsletter.

USC Annenberg Career Development

The
USC Annenberg Career Development office provides internship and job listings, job fairs, résumé and career workshops, and one-on-one counseling to aid both students and alumni in their search for a fulfilling career.

USC Annenberg International Programs

USC Annenberg sponsors international
undergraduate study abroad programs in exciting cities around the globe. Each of the programs provides students with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to gain international experience in their chosen field of study.

Organizations

To learn more about all the organizations USC Annenberg has to offer, visit our
Student Organizations page.

Admission Standards and Application Requirements

Admission to the School of Journalism is selective. When reviewing applications, the Admission Committee considers many factors, such as academic performance, experience in the field of journalism and solid writing skills. The statement of intent is weighed heavily in the application process. To be competitive, applicants should have at least a 3.0 cumulative grade point average. Students must complete at least one
semester of USC course work (a minimum of 16 units) to be eligible to apply.

To apply to the School of Journalism, students must complete the
online application form by one of the deadlines below.

Students will be notified of their admission status approximately two weeks after the application deadline. For more information about the School of Journalism or the application process, contact USC Annenberg Student Services at (213) 740-0900 or ascjadv@usc.edu . Information sessions are offered throughout the fall and spring semesters for students who plan to apply to the School of Journalism. A flier with session dates is available in the USC Annenberg Student Services Office, or go
here to RSVP for an information session.

Application Deadlines

Public Relations

It is recommended that students interested in applying to the public relations major do so before their junior year. It takes public relations majors a minimum of four semesters from the time of admission to the program to complete the major requirements.

Broadcast and Digital & Print and Digital Journalism

It is recommended that students interested in applying to the broadcast and digital or print and digital journalism majors do so before their sophomore year. It takes broadcast and print journalism majors a minimum of five semesters from the time of admission to the program–starting in a fall semester–to complete the major requirements.

FALL APPLICATION DEADLINE: All applications are due by 5 p.m. the first Friday of the fall semester.

SPRING APPLICATION DEADLINE: All applications are due by 5 p.m. the first Friday of the spring semester.

Late applications will not be considered.

NOTE: Students who apply to the broadcast and digital or print and digital journalism majors in either application period will begin the major course sequencing the following fall semester, since the broadcast/print newswriting module is only
offered in the fall term. Students will be notified of admissions status approximately two weeks after the application deadline.

Required Documents for the Undergraduate Application

The documents below are required.
Incomplete applications will not be considered.

          - 
Completed School of Journalism
online application form for current USC students only.

          - 
Statement of Intent–a one-page essay focusing on your interest in pursuing an education and career in the 
             field of journalism or public relations. Limit 500-600 words.

          - 
Letters of recommendation–USC academic references preferred. Letters must be submitted online to the
             USC Annenberg admissions committee and received by the application deadline. Students must have at least
             one letter of recommendation, although two are recommended.

NOTE: The Admission Committee will review students’ academic records (transcripts and transfer credit statements) on the university system.

To apply now to a Journalism Major, click here.