The first and only of its kind, this project provides an overview of the emerging – and growing – digital or multimedia undergraduate journalism education in U.S.
By September 2012, through a comprehensive examination of more than 500 journalism and communication programs in U.S., 111 programs are identified as digital or multimedia journalism programs.
How I categorize a digital/multimedia journalism program
This project is based on an examination of 483 journalism and communication programs in the “2010 Annual Survey of Journalism & Mass Communication Enrollments” published by Journalism & Mass Communication Educator (winter 2011), as well as online searches for programs not included in that survey.
Each category is indicated with a color marker on the map. The legend is as follows:
- Fully integrated: All students must take dedicated courses in digital or multimedia journalism, and must take reporting and production courses for both print and broadcast platforms.
- Partly integrated: All students must take dedicated courses in digital/multimedia journalism, and choose a concentration in, or multiple courses that focus on, a specific print or broadcast platform.
- Silo: Students choose a concentration or track that is focused on digital/multimedia journalism. Separate tracks exist for other platforms such as broadcast or print.
- Electives only: Students may choose dedicated courses in digital/multimedia journalism, but they are not required. (This category is not plotted on the map)
Findings: Digital/multimedia journalism education in U.S.
- Digital journalism education in U.S.: The accelerating trend
- What is a digital/multimedia journalism course?
- How to teach digital/multimedia journalism? An analysis of 30 syllabi
- Gap between journalism education and the (changing) journalism profession
- What is a digital/multimedia journalism program curriculum?
- Photography should be a core course for digital journalism education
- How to develop a forward-looking digital journalism program? (must read!)
- Digital training is lacking for journalism students
- A survey of master’s programs in digital journalism in U.S.
- What to teach in an intro digital journalism class: web writing, mobile, data, multimedia storytelling
- Survey: Only a few colleges see the need for all communication students to take digital skill courses
Limitations of this survey
The primary research method was to examine degree requirements, curriculum and syllabi posted on the website of a journalism program. It has the following limitations:
- Programs that may be “digital/multimedia” but don’t have a posted online degree requirement are not included in this survey.
- This project only examines courses that have an explicit title which indicates the digital contents or nature of the course; the course content indicators include “digital,” “multimedia,” “online,” “multi-platform,” “cross-platform,” “convergence,” etc.
- This project does not include programs that offer conventional journalism courses with built-in digital/multimedia components.
- This project is not able to differentiate the scope of digital journalism training that a program offers: per current definition, a “fully integrated” program may be a program that offers one (and only one) digital journalism class, and it may also be a program that offers multiple digital courses.
Thus programs on this list should not be construed as the only schools/programs teaching digital or multimedia journalism in U.S.
Mu Lin, Ph.D.
Infographic: How to develop a digital journalism program
Here’s an infographic for an “ideal” model of digital journalism degree program; it is based on findings in this survey as well as my own thoughts on digital journalism education.