Penn State accepting applications for bachelor’s degree in digital journalism

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — For the first time, aspiring writers, reporters and producers can earn a Penn State journalism degree online.

Students will learn about the principles of a fast-changing communications environment and choose a course of study in either digital news reporting, visual media production or media management in the new bachelor of arts in digital journalism and media. The degree is being offered exclusively online through Penn State World Campus, and the faculty from the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications will teach the courses.

Penn State is accepting applications for the new degree program for admission in the University’s spring 2018 semester, which starts in January.

“Storytelling is moving away from traditional methods and embracing digital media, and while the media might be changing, the need for passionate and professional seekers of truth has never been more critical,” said Shannon Kennan, assistant teaching professor at the Bellisario College. “New job functions, business models, and legal and ethical issues require that students have different skill sets and perspectives to get the attention of people in the 21st century.”

The degree program consists of 120 credits, including required courses in basic news writing, multimedia journalism, media law, ethics, telecommunications technologies and the principles of strategic communications. Students will then choose an in-depth course of study.

Students who select the digital journalism track will take courses to prepare them for careers in journalism. Courses include news reporting, editing, photography and photojournalism, and creating multimedia projects.

In the visual media track, students will develop their skills in various realms of using photography and video in storytelling. Courses will explore digital camera skills, documentary production, screenwriting, and multimedia production.

Those who select the media management track will learn about the telecommunications industry, using metrics for traditional and digital media, applications of communications law and leading newsrooms and media companies.

“Penn State has a tradition of offering a high-quality journalism program, and the online format of this new degree opens up a Penn State education to anyone in the world,” said Karen Pollack, assistant vice provost for online and blended programs. “We are excited to expand access to a Penn State degree.”

To offer the degree program, the Bellisario College partnered with Penn State World Campus, the University’s highly ranked online campus that has offered degree programs online since 1998. World Campus students have access to a variety of academic services, such as tutoring and career counseling.

Visit the Penn State World Campus website to learn more about the new bachelor’s degree.

Media Contacts: 

Mike Dawson

Work Phone: 
814-865-5818

408 The 329 Building, University Park, PA 16802

Last Updated October 19, 2017