Department of Journalism, College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Journalism is the work of supplying content, primarily news, for the ever-expanding world of mass media. Journalists are responsible for gathering information, analyzing and editing it for a mass audience, and dispensing it using some form of media platform. Increasingly the methods of distribution have become more complex, but the basic mission of a journalist remains the same: to serve the public by finding, defining, writing and editing information.
Today’s journalist may be found on traditional publications such as newspapers and magazines, broadcast outlets and specialized publications. He or she may utilize online delivery or other forms of electronic communication. The trained journalist may use her or his skills in the expanding field of public relations, working to serve as a bridge between those with a message to communicate and the journalist who seeks information.
Why Consider the Public Relations Sequence of the Journalism Major?
Journalism majors pursue theoretical and practical communication studies in a liberal arts setting. Students of journalism gain practical experience on Western’s award-winning student media, and majors additionally take field internships with newspapers, magazines, broadcast stations, public relations agencies and other professional organizations.
Courses in the public relations sequence follow the news/editorial emphasis, adding communication skills important for careers in this rapidly growing field.
Reporter | Editor | Customer Service Representative | Public Relations Specialist | Community Relations Director | TV News Anchor | Speech Writer | Advertising Copywriter | Copywriter | Market Research Analyst | Lobbyist | Photojournalist | Designer | Multimedia Producer | All careers involving communication
How to Declare (Admission and Declaration Process):
Criteria for declaring a pre-major:
To be eligible to declare as a pre-major in journalism, a student must have a minimum 2.5 cumulative GPA. Transfer students will be accepted during summer Transitions advising or during their first quarter on campus. Freshmen must complete one quarter of classes at WWU to establish a GPA before being considered as a pre-major. Current WWU students must show evidence of the required 2.5 GPA. Students are encouraged to declare as a pre-major while completing the requirements for the major. For complete details, see Steps to Becoming a Major, Declaring as a Pre-Major on the department’s website.
Admissions: For admission to the major, a student must have completed the following requirements:
- Complete at least 30 college credits with a cumulative 2.50 grade point average
- Pass JOUR 207 with a B- or better
- Complete one Journalism staff course with a B- or better
- Submit a letter of application
Students meeting qualifications but not admitted because of space limitations will be listed as pre-majors and admitted as space allows.
Application deadlines: Deadlines for major declarations are posted in the Journalism Department and on the student Canvas site each quarter.
See additional details in the Journalism Department’s Declaration of Major .
A grade of C- or better is required for a student’s major or minor courses, and supporting courses for majors and minors. Cumulative GPA of 2.50 or higher in major is required.