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Fall 2009       publication for alumni and friends of the department of journalism       CSU, Chico

Journalism department establishes new requirement for students

By Tawnya Rojas

Incoming freshmen and students who declared a journalism major after April 1, 2009, have new classes coming their way and are now required to graduate under the new plan.

The journalism major is now a 40-unit major up from 34, but students will need only 120 units to graduate instead of 124. This means students will lose a few elective courses and add more required courses that emphasize new media skills.

To help students become comfortable with online media, Journalism 255, “Introduction to Online Journalism,” is now a degree core course for all journalism students.

“There’s a certain amount of technological stress that students feel,” said Glen Bleske, professor and department chair. “Not everybody likes to get on the Internet, play with computers and write blogs. Our students need to feel comfortable in dealing with all the technological tools that are out there.”

Assistant Professor Susan Brockus said that Journalism 255 offers students an organized approach to new media.

“Our goal is to integrate technology in every course,” she said. “We treat it as important as diversity.”

To help integrate new media, the faculty has decided to require all students taking Journalism 325, “Magazine Writing” to buy mini-camcorders and complete a video story as part of the courses.

Under the new plan, the news-editorial students are now required to select two courses in the visual communications electives instead of one. This means they will be required to take an upper division course that deals with new media.

Public relations students have new requirements within their option as well.

The journalism department used to have a communications research course many years ago; however, it was too general and did not focus enough on public relations. Starting in the spring 2010, public relations students will be offered Journalism 342, “Public Relations Research, Measurement and Evaluation.”

The overall goal of the new course is to provide students with the necessary skills to conduct qualitative and quantitative public relations research and measure tangible results.

The journalism department has been working on starting a Public Relations Student Society of America chapter at Chico State for about three years. With Journalism 342, this goal can now be achieved.

This course completes the courses that the PRSSA requires in order to have a chapter on campus.

The journalism major is one of the smaller sized majors in terms of number of units needed to graduate at Chico State and one of the few that require a minor in another area of study.

All of the journalism faculty agreed that the new plan will better equip journalism students for the news-editorial or public relations industry.

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Photo Gallery

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1. In your opinion, which social media tool currently used by professionals in the communications industry will become obsolete first?


2. If you were a Chico State college student again for one day, what would you do?

Float down the Sacramento River
Hike in Bidwell Park
Embark on a bar crawl
Visit a favorite teacher
Take a tour of the campus
Spend time at The Orion
Spend time in TGC

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Produced By


Department Chair
Glen Bleske

Ashley Anderson
Jamie Kim
Haley McHenry
Tawnya Rojas

Megan Alley
Jennifer Lovelace
Marcia Miller

Ryan Horner
Brian Randle
Jasmine Roufchaie

Stephanie Brock