Classes

Please note: The classes listed here represent recent offerings at the Journalism School. All are M.S. courses, except for those that are specifically designated as M.A. courses. Choices vary each semester depending on faculty availability and other considerations. Classes described now may change or be dropped to make room for new additions. We cannot promise that students will gain a seat in any specific class.

Audio I

This course teaches fundamental and advanced techniques of field reporting and writing in audio or radio media. Emphasis is on writing clearly and conversationally, with integration of recorded voices and natural sound. Students will pitch, report, write and produce compelling, public radio style pieces, including newscasts, news stories, features and interviews. They will be trained in state-of-the-industry recording equipment and editing software. Students will receive detailed, one-on-one editing and will publish their work in on-demand digital audio formats. Writing and technical skills of this course are intended to serve students well in any medium.

This class (or Audio II for students with prior experience) is a prerequisite for those interested in pitching a full audio master’s project.

Multiple instructors teach sections of this class.

City Newsroom

The students in City Newsroom will cover all of New York City. They’ll operate, manage, edit and contribute to a live news site: NYCityLens.com. The course is set up to give students hands-on experience running a news site and to hone their skills in reporting and producing ambitious stories in all formats. Students will cover breaking news, develop features, dig into deeper stories and shoot and edit videos. Its goal: to let students cover stories in the medium best suited to tell a particular story. We will focus on five areas: breaking news, crime and justice, culture and art, New York’s immigrant population and politics and policy. Students will pitch stories every week to perfect their pitching skills. We expect everyone in the newsroom to produce a specific number of stories: eight print stories, five videos or a to-be-determined combination of both. The instructors are skilled in video storytelling, digital and print. The course runs over two days: Thursday and Friday. Story meetings and screenings of class work are held during the afternoons of those days and attendance is mandatory. If you love covering news, want to improve your storytelling skills in multiple formats and welcome the challenge of reporting on this city in depth, this is the class for you.

Students who wish to do video in this class will be charged a $275 lab fee.

Multimedia Storytelling

The Multimedia Storytelling Workshop will focus on best practices in longform video storytelling. Students will learn advanced principles in field production, as well as sophisticated post-production techniques using Adobe Premiere CS6. The course will focus on shooting techniques, proper audio recording and strong video storytelling skills. While there will be theoretical discussions and critique of professional work, most class time will be spent in the field to strengthen each student's production capabilities.

Prerequisite: 7-week video module
Students who enroll in this class will be charged a $275 lab fee.

Radio Workshop

The course is intended to provide mastery of the most important skills needed in a high-quality radio news organization. Students develop advanced radio writing and production techniques through the broadcast of a weekly radio news program. The class functions as a working newsroom to produce Uptown Radio, a live webcast every Friday at 4 p.m. and on-demand podcast. Students learn the full range of radio reporting and writing techniques, including newscasts, spot news, feature stories, creative commentary and longer narrative pieces using documentary methods. On the production side, students rotate through roles such as executive producer, managing editor, senior producer and various technical positions to ensure a timely broadcast that offers high value to its listeners. The course develops your writing and reporting skills (irrespective of media) by emphasizing descriptive writing, narrative and scene-building techniques, and longform documentary techniques. There are no prerequisites for this course.

Storytelling for the Ear

Section 1: Ann Cooper
Section 2: Daniel Alarcon

Whether we are listening to them or reading them, stories told for the ear engage us, hold our attention and make us "see" the story. Driven by strong, clear narrative writing, these stories capture our imagination. They are intimate and compelling. The writing is conversational and active. The scenes are vivid and memorable. From Edward R. Murrow’s account of entering Buchenwald in 1945, to Sarah Koenig’s 2014 Serial podcast, journalists who write for the ear have always been among our most powerful storytellers.

This class explores the qualities of the best audio storytelling and the ways it differs from, and is similar to, writing for print, online or video. For some assignments, students will record interviews and use them in producing audio scripts. These assignments complement, but do not duplicate, audio courses in the Sound and Image module. The level of technical skills required are no more than what all students have learned in the August digital skills training – recording and mixing a basic story with written narration and actuality from interviews. Storytelling for the Ear is not a prerequisite for any course, though the writing style taught in this class will make all of your writing stronger. it will be especially useful for students planning careers in broadcast journalism, whether radio, television or documentary.

Video I

In this course, students will learn the basics of video journalism: gathering sound and picture simultaneously; the fundamentals of exposure and composition; the grammar of video, writing to picture, selecting sound bites and the basic concepts of nonlinear editing. By the end of the course students should have a foundational understanding of the basic skills involved in video storytelling and the ability to produce short-form video pieces. This class (or Video II, described below, for students with prior experience) is a prerequisite for those interested in pitching a video hybrid master’s project or registering for any of the following spring classes: Video Storytelling, Nightly News and Multimedia Storytelling.

(Please note that registration for this class is not a guarantee of admission into those spring classes or of faculty approval for a video hybrid project.)

Students who enroll in this class will be charged a $175 lab fee. 

Multiple instructors teach sections of this class.

Video II

Note: Students registering for Video II will be required to demonstrate the ability to shoot video interviews and action scenes; identify and use sound bites; and edit a short story using pictures and sound on either Final Cut Pro VII or Adobe Premiere.

This course is designed to give students who already have a working knowledge of basic video journalism the chance to develop a more sophisticated understanding of and approach to the medium. This includes: the elements necessary for producing compelling stories; lighting and shooting sequences and well-framed interviews; a deeper understanding of the relationship between light and exposure; traits and best practices of professional videographers; practical ethical and legal considerations, and the realities of working on assignment; developing rapport with subjects.  Students will work toward producing more seamlessly edited and polished stories. This class (or Video I) is a prerequisite for students interested in pitching a video hybrid master’s project or registering for any of the following spring classes: Video Storytelling, Nightly News and Multimedia Storytelling.

(Please note: Students in this class are not guaranteed admission into those spring classes, or of faculty approval for a video hybrid master’s project.) Students who enroll in this class will be charged a $175 lab fee.

Multiple instructors teach sections of this class.

Video Newsroom

Video Newsroom will combine elements of Nightly News, Reinventing TV News and Audience & Engagement, giving students intensive, frequent video reporting opportunities while publishing in real time on the web and social media. We will, to the greatest extent possible, cover news and developing stories and publish them within 24 hours. 

Students will be expected to shoot and edit stories at least once per week, concentrating on dynamic changes in NYC, including themes such as Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Emerging Politics, Race, Gender and Identity, Changing Demographics and Grass Roots New York. This will give the typical student at least a dozen stories (some will have more) to show prospective employers, demonstrating several different approaches to field reporting.

A staff of instructors from diverse video-producing organizations such as ABC News, WNBC, Vice News, HBO, CBS News and The Guardian will enable students to experiment with various styles and formats of field reporting, preparing them for careers across a spectrum of video reporting opportunities. We will also experiment with “live” streaming from the field, and will produce several integrated newscasts in the television studio, though field reporting will be our emphasis throughout.

 

In addition, the course will include a 7-week seminar based on Professor Klatell’s popular Reinventing TV News, exposing students to new business models for video production companies, such as those of NowThis, Buzzfeed, Twitter and Vine, re-designed legacy organizations including CNN Money and Politics, as well as the planned Vice News Tonight evening program, to be launched in collaboration with HBO.

Finally, we will embed a specialized 7-week section of Audience & Engagement, to be built around the video reporting and web publication that is integral to Video Newsroom, rather than materials developed especially for Audience & Engagement. This will enable students not only to publish frequently throughout the semester, but to identify and engage target audiences and online communities over many weeks, thereby gathering more relevant data and better metrics than is often the case.

Whether your goal is to work in local or network television news, for an online publication, an international organization or as a freelance video journalist, your career will likely begin with the ability to find, report, produce and distribute news stories in various video formats. Video Newsroom aspires to create opportunities for ambitious students to achieve that goal.

Prerequisite: 7-week video module

Students who enroll in this class will be charged a $275 lab fee.

Video Newsroom

Tuesday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Wednesday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

So you want to be a globetrotting, foreign correspondent? A Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter for The New York Times? An Emmy Award-winning producer for Vice or CNN? A feature writer for Vanity Fair? No matter what your aspirations, you will have to work efficiently under deadlines. With practice, practice and more practice, this class will teach you techniques and cultivate a mindset that will enable you to succeed when reporting, writing and/or producing under tight deadlines. You will learn to turn your deadline anxiety into adrenaline – and to enjoy the process.

You will pitch stories every Monday night for coverage the next day. On Tuesday mornings you will head to the field to report and/or shoot your story. These assignments replicate what you would be likely to cover for a mainstream media organization: breaking news, local and state politics, press conferences, follow-ups to news stories as well as short features. You will file your story on Tuesday and begin editing with one-on-one help from the professors. On Wednesday mornings we will meet as a class for a seminar. You will learn the techniques and strategies necessary for reporting, producing, shooting, editing and writing under deadline. In the afternoon you will work with the professors to bring your story to broadcast or printable quality.

Students who wish to do video in this class will be charged a $275 lab fee.

Video Storytelling

This workshop concentrates on narrative, non-fiction storytelling for visual media. Students will report and produce video stories in a variety of styles (including first-person, non-narration, and more traditional reporting styles including on-camera) and varying lengths suitable for broadcast, cable and online platforms. This semester we're excited to experiment with Virtual Reality 360 immersive video. In-depth reports, feature stories and profiles are encouraged, with the emphasis on substantive reporting and compelling storytelling of all kinds. In addition to production sessions, weekly seminar will focus on topics such as story structure, interview techniques, lighting, editing, graphics and pitching your stories and yourself to media outlets. Learn how to develop characters, create story arc, weave narrative with information.   We hear presentations from cameramen, producers and reporters from 60 Minutes, the new production network Storyhunter, and independent documentary companies. We often collaborate with at least one professional outlet; students in previous classes have produced assignments that have been posted on The New York Times, Channel Thirteen, The Daily Beast, Frontline’s website and NPR.  At the end of the semester, students will produce and direct a project.

Prerequisite: 7-week video module
Students who enroll in this class will be charged a $275 lab fee.