Cross Registration

Graduate students from other Columbia Divisions/Schools looking to register for Fall 2018 classes at the Journalism School must follow the steps outlined below. More classes may be added to this list. Please check back.

Cross-registration will open Monday, August 20, at 10 a.m. and will close Friday, September 14, at 10 a.m. To cross-register, students must submit this form.


Class Offerings for Fall 2018

Memoir Writing

J6010 - 3 points

Instructor: Jonathan Weiner

Day/Time: W 9 a.m.-noon, Oct. 25-December 12

All great memoirs share the same secret. Their authors have learned the power of basic narrative principles. The aim of this course is to master those principles, to study them in the work of others, and to apply them to your own. The first few sessions are spent in an overview of the memoir form, discussing how to recognize, report, structure and write stories that move confidently through time, place and character. The remaining weeks proceed through a series of more specific technical issues using dialogue, choosing and depicting characters (including your own), compressing and expanding time, managing transitions, providing context, maintaining the highest standards of accuracy, establishing a voice. Beyond the regular readings, the main requirement is to find one good personal story idea and then develop it in a series of short sketches, gradually working your way deeper into the narrative form as the semester progresses. 


Writing About the Arts

J6010 - 3 points 

Instructor: David Hajdu

Day/Time: 6-9 p.m.Sept. 10 - October 22

The arts in their innumerable forms are central to 21st-century life. This class prepares journalists to report and write on the arts with rigor, depth, clarity, and a due quality of artfulness. Students will study how the arts function as a reflection of culture, an economic engine, and an influence on politics. Assignments include arts news, feature writing, and criticism. 


Narrative Writing

J6010 - 3 points 

Instructor: Keith Gessen

Day/Time:  M 12-3 p.m.October 29-December 10

This class focuses on narrative writing along the lines of the feature pieces you might find in the New Yorker and the New York Times Magazine, or in smaller experimental magazines like n+1 and the Baffler. How do you put something like that together? How do you maintain a reader's interest without unduly dramatizing the subject matter and deviating from the truth? What do you need to look for in your reporting to make sure you have enough material when it comes time to sit down and write? How do you get all the research you've done into your piece without putting the reader to sleep? And how much of all this do you need to figure out in advance? Students are expected to come to class with some reporting already in hand (reporting done in the Reporting module is usually best); students will keep reporting and begin weekly writing assignments as we also read pieces from classic practitioners and more recent masters. We will discuss structure and chronology (brought to you by your best friend: time), as well as scene-setting, physical description, the "call-back," the judicious use of quotations, and the importance of deep but focused research. We will visit the underutilized stacks of Butler Library. By the end of the class each student will have produced a compelling and well-structured narrative of between 3,500 and 4,500 words.


Journalism & Society

J6030 - 3 points 

Instructor: Andie Tucher

Day/Time: W 4:10pm-6:00pm (all semester) 

An exploration of the central role of journalism in public life. We'll explore its historical roots, social role, and cultural contexts, and consider how it works in a democracy and what happens if it doesn't. Topics include the evolution of journalistic conventions; the rise and fall of objectivity; the ideal, and the reality, of the adversarial press; the impacts of new technologies and economic structures; journalism and storytelling; and, yes, of course, fake news. Although the focus is on US institutions and practices, we'll be placing them in a global context.  


Communications, Knowledge, and Power Since the Enlightenment: The United States and the World

GR8414 - 4 points

InstructorRichard John & Emily Bell

Day/Time:T 4:10pm-6:00pm (all semester)

This course provides graduate students with a topical introduction to major themes in the history of communications since the Enlightenment. The focus is on media organizations and public policy. Attention will be paid to visual media, news reporting, and digital journalism. Readings are drawn not only from history, but also from media studies, literature, and historical sociology. *REGISTER VIA SSOL FOR GR8414 (History dept).


Sociology of News 

J9100 - 3 pts. 

Instructor:  Michael Schudson

Day/Time: M 10:10-12 (all semester)

This seminar introduces students to that portion of the sociology of mass media that takes news or journalism as its central subject. Sociology, like other social sciences, paid little attention to journalism until journalism as it has developed became more problematic in the 1950s and 1960s (for reasons we will take up in the seminar).  From that point on, a serious social science-based study of journalism began to emerge and we will review some of its influential texts and some very recent additions to the literature. Most of our reading centers on the United States, but comparative studies in news analysis have grown in the past twenty years and we will attend to some of this work, too.  Several approaches to understanding the impact of the digital revolution on journalism will also be discussed. 


Disinformation, Fake News, and Democracy

J8001 - 3 points

InstructorTodd Gitlin

Day/Time: W 10:10am-12:00pm (all semester)

A seminar on the operations of propaganda in American history and more generally. How polarized is the American public? How new is polarization about the nature of reality? What are the new elements in the age of Trump and what are the continuities? What are the roles of right-wing and social media? Students will give class presentations and write research papers encompassing original research.



W3100 - 3 points 

Undergraduate; enrollment cap 40

Instructor: Andie Tucher & Michael Schudson

Day/Time:TR 1:10pm-2:25pm (all semester)

An introduction to the conventions, traditions, values, assumptions, and arguments that have shaped the institution of journalism and its central role in public life. Through close readings/viewings of current and classic works of journalism as well as secondary sources, we explore some of the Big Questions: What is journalism for? What is its role in public life, and how has that changed over time? Is objectivity dead--or should it be? How have new technologies affected our expectations? Is sensationalism bad for you? What is the future of journalism? The focus is on the American experience from the colonial era to the present day, though we will also draw comparisons with international developments.


Frontiers of Computational Journalism

J6002 - 3 points 

Instructor: Jonathan Stray

Day/Time: W 10:00am-1 p.m.Sept. 12

The course is a hands-on, research-level introduction to the areas of computer science that are relevant to producing an informed and engaged public. We study two big ideas: the application of computation to produce journalism (such as data science for investigative reporting), and journalism about areas that involve computation (such as the analysis of credit scoring algorithms.)
Along the way we will touch on many topics: information recommendation systems but also filter bubbles, principles of statistical analysis but also the human processes which generate data, network analysis and its role in investigative journalism, visualization techniques and the cognitive effects involved in viewing a visualization.
Assignments will require programming in Python, but the emphasis will be on clearly articulating the connection between the algorithmic and the editorial.


Registration Details

For the most part, spots in J-School classes are assigned to non-Journalism graduate students on a space available basis (with top priority given to IMC SIPA students).

To request cross-registration in a Journalism School course, please complete this form.

The form will be active as of Monday, August 20, at 10 a.m.

Please note that this is only a REQUEST and we cannot guarantee your request will be accommodated.

Cross-registration request forms are processed on a first come, first served basis.

If your form is submitted correctly you will receive a request confirmation e-mail within 24 hours. Please remember to include the after your UNI.

You will NOT receive an e-mail from my office saying that your request was granted or not granted.

To learn if your request was granted, you must keep checking your class schedule on the web. All requests remain on file during the cross-registration period (August 20 - September 14 at 10 a.m.).

You do not need to submit multiple forms for the same cross-registration request. If I am able to grant requests I do it as soon as possible but sometimes it takes days for a space to open in a class. Sometimes the space never opens up.

Please remember that you are submitting a cross-registration REQUEST. There is no guarantee that I will be able to approve your request. Until you see a change reflected on your class schedule on STUDENT SERVICES ONLINE, your request has not been approved.

If you have more than one course for which you want to be considered, please submit a separate form for each class.

Also, please be certain that you are not requesting a class that conflicts with any of your other classes.

Direct any questions to Melanie Huff.