UC Berkeley’s Journalism Minor: Boost Your Career Prospects

Improve Your Career Prospects With a Journalism Minor at UC Berkeley

Students of any major can improve their career prospects with fundamental journalistic skills. Whether it’s finding engaging topics, conducting interviews, or harnessing cutting-edge communication technology, these are valuable skills in virtually every field.

The journalism minor — taught in two six-week summer sessions — provides students with hands-on training in current and emerging media platforms.

Introduction to Journalism

With a keen mind, an able pen and facility for language you can serve your community with news that is factual and adheres to ethical standards. There are few professions more noble.

Whether you’re a seasoned professional seeking to modernize your skills, or a college undergraduate exploring options, this hands-on minor prepares you to report on contemporary realities with precision and eloquence. You’ll learn the core reporting and writing skills, social media, video, photography, and cutting-edge communication technology that are essential to success in this era of converged media.

Understand what makes a story newsworthy and hear about the challenges reporters face in gathering and verifying facts. Study how the legalities of journalism operate and be prepared to fend off ethical issues that could land you in hot water. This course also introduces you to the most common structural elements of news writing. You will also become familiar with the law as it applies to journalists in the United States.

Journalism in the Digital Age

In this era of social media and new communication technologies, journalists must understand how to best engage their audience. This minor will equip students with the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in this fast-paced industry.

The quest for truth will never become less important. Journalists must find and pursue the stories that matter, and present them in a way that will engage readers.

Today’s globalizing world means that local stories often have international implications. Learn the specialized reporting techniques that international journalists use to cover events around the globe, and how to find reliable sources and overcome language barriers.

Students who enjoy writing and want to take their skills to the next level may enjoy writing news analysis or doing some investigative journalism. This minor will also give students the opportunity to gain proficiency with broadcast and online video, photography, and audio reporting.

Specialty Reporting

The skills journalists use — identifying questions, finding answers and communicating them effectively — are hugely valuable to students in every major. The minor in journalism will allow students to learn those fundamentals, bringing them into their everyday lives.

Specialized reporting in journalism is the area of expertise a journalist acquires by focusing on a particular topic or issue. This can include politics, international reporting, science and technology coverage or even the unique reporting challenges associated with a sports event.

While it’s possible for students to complete a specialized report with the same course work as a traditional journalism minor, there are also unique requirements that come with each type of specialty. For example, a political reporter needs to have a strong understanding of government structures at all levels and be able to interview politicians from diverse backgrounds. A science and technology reporter must be familiar with the latest scientific predictions, discoveries and adventures. A sports reporter must be able to convey the meaning of sport to the general public.

Journalism Ethics

Journalism is a profession that requires an individual with the ability to inform society of current events with at least some degree of accuracy. It involves research, writing and editing in various literary styles, as well as the use of media platforms such as social media, television, radio, and photography.

Despite the fact that today anyone can easily share news stories online with just a few clicks, the vast majority of people still depend on journalists to report on events in their daily lives. The most important thing is that a journalist’s work is accurate and fair.

UC Berkeley’s journalism program offers students hands-on training to modernize their skills across multiple platforms. The curriculum includes courses on narrative writing, podcasting and audio reporting, broadcast and online video production, as well as photojournalism and data-based storytelling. These skills are useful in many occupations, including those outside journalism. The minor is available to undergraduates, and can be completed in one summer or spread over two years.

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