JOUR318 W14

Journalism318: Literature of Journalism
Tues., Thurs., 1:25-2:50 p.m., Reid 302
Doug Cumming, Ph.D., cummingd@wlu.edu
Reid Hall 101 – 458-8208
In this course we will study nonfiction writing from three perspectives: the New Journalism that emerged in the 1960s and continues today, the older nonfiction writing that has more recently come to be recognized as its forerunner, and finally, the various techniques of this fact-based but often subjective journalism that students might use today.
Goals
The readings, class lectures and discussion are designed to give each student a historical perspective on journalism. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the role and importance of the journalist in society. In addition, students will improve and expand their writing, by analyzing and practicing feature-writing techniques and journalistic writing as a five-step process.
Competencies:
At the end of this class, you should be able to:
• Think critically and independently
• Conduct research and evaluate methods appropriate to the communications professions, audiences and the purposes they serve
• Write correctly and clearly in forms and styles appropriate for the communications professions, audiences and purposes they serve
• Demonstrate an understanding of the history and role of professionals and the various media organizations in shaping communications
In this class, you will be presented with opportunities to self-test your knowledge of the values and competencies identified by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications and embraced by this department. Many of these values and competencies are identified and addressed in other courses in the department.
Requirements
Each member of the class will compose either:
• A clearly written, well-researched seminar-length paper (15 pages) on a class-related person or topic. You may choose a topic of particular interest to you, but it must be directly related to our focus in this course
• A first person magazine-length story
These works will be broken down into a series of assignments and drafts, starting by the Week 4. In addition, students will prepare and submit brief but well-written reactions to the reading assignments. There is no final examination. Students are expected to do all the assigned readings before class and participate in class
discussions about those readings.
Books
The New Journalism Wolfe & Johnson, eds.
Literary Journalism Sims & Kramer, eds.
Course pack selected by Prof. Cumming
Grading
Class Attendance and Participation 15 points
Written Assignments 45 points
Final Story/Paper 40 points
Calendar (under construction)
Undergraduate classes will be adjusted on Monday, January 20, for the Founders’ Day Convocation and Omicron Delta Kappa tapping.
 Undergraduate classes will be adjusted on Thursday, March 13, for the Phi Beta Kappa/Society of the Cincinnati Convocation.

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About Doug Cumming

journalism professor at W&L
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