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Media, Communications and Journalism

MCJ Degrees and Programs

Two Curriculums

All students entering Fresno State in fall 2020 or later are required to follow this course of study. If you began your Fresno State studies before fall 2020, your option and course requirements remain the same -- although you are welcome to take some of the new courses. Here is what you need to know:

For Students Entering in Fall 2020 and Beyond

Majors must complete a minimum of 37 semester units of mass communication and journalism courses with a grade of C or better in each course. Students will take 19 units of MCJ core courses and 18 units of courses in their selected option.

Each MCJ major must select an option, which is an area of specialization within the major. The options are advertising and public relations, broadcast and multiplatform journalism, digital journalism, and film and media arts. The courses required for each option are listed under Major Requirements.

Degrees 

  • BA in Mass Communication & Journalism - Advertising/Public Relations Option
  • BA in Mass Communication & Journalism - Broadcast/Multiplatform Journalism Option
  • BA in Mass Communication & Journalism - Digital Journalism Option 
  • BA in Mass Communication and Journalism - Film and Media Arts Option

The Requirements

Each option requires students to complete 120 credits: 

1. Major Requirements (37 units)
  • 19 units -- MCJ classes that all students must take (the Common Core)
  • 18 units -- MCJ option-specific classes
2. General Education Requirements (48 units)
  • *You are encouraged to take MCJ general education courses, which are MCJ 1 -- Mass Communication and Society (Area D3); MCJ 9 --Film Appreciation (Area C1); MCJ 175 -- Media Stereotypes (Area ID); MCJ 178 -- New Information Technologies (Area ID).
3. Other Requirements (9 units)
  • American Government and Institutions (PLSI 2), Multicultural and International (MI), and Upper-division writing. Broadcast/multiplatform journalism and Advertising/PR option students are required to take MCJ 102W to satisfy their UDWS requirement. It is recommended that students take an MCJ course for their MI (MCJ 176 or MCJ 179)
4. Sufficient MCJ* or other electives to meet required total units (approximately 26)
5. Total (120 units)

NOTE: Students who aren’t taking a “W” class as part of their MCJ option coursework must pass a "W" course in this department or another department or pass the Upper-Division Writing Examination (UDWE) to satisfy the upper division writing requirement. 

The Common Core

All MCJ students must take these same six courses: 

  • MCJ 2 Media Writing (3 units)
  • MCJ 15 Filmmaking I (3 units)
  • MCJ 40 Introduction to Advertising and Public Relations (3 units)
  • MCJ 164 Applied Media Research (3 units)
  • MCJ 171 Media Law and Ethics (3 units)
  • MCJ 199 Capstone (4 units)*

*Each option offers one section of MCJ 199, the capstone class. You must take the section offered by your option. For example, an advertising/PR student would take the advertising/PR section of 199. The capstone classes all require permission numbers to enroll.

The Option Requirements

Advertising/Public Relations

  • MCJ 144: Writing to Influence
  • MCJ 147S: Digital and Social Media
  • MCJ 158SW: Advance Writing to Influence
  • MCJ 191: Internship
  • Pick two from: MCJ 106 (Publication Design); MCJ 143 (Media Sales); MCJ 146 (Media Planning); MCJ 150 (Strategic Political Campaigns); MCJ 155SW (Nonprofit Public Relations and Development Writing); MCJ 157 (PR and Advertising Agency); MCJ 180 (Water and Strategic Media); or MCJ 181 (Health and Strategic Media) 

Broadcast/Multiplatform Journalism

  • MCJ 14: Mulitmedia and Mobile Journalism
  • MCJ 102W: Reporting
  • MCJ 121: News Video Production
  • MCJ 124: Intermediate Broadcast News Writing
  • MCJ 126: Media Performance
  • Pick one: MCJ 17 (Photojournalism); MCJ 123 (Fresno State Crew); MCJ 125 (Radio News and Podcasting); or MCJ 129 (Global Campus Studio)

NOTE: Fresno State Focus (formerly MCJ 128), the student-produced TV newscast and website, is now part of the MCJ common core. Broadcast/Multiplatform students will take the broadcast/multiplatform section of MCJ 199. You may enroll in MCJ 199 (Fresno State Focus) twice -- once as a common core course and once as an elective for a more advanced experience. Please see your major adviser for more information. Although an MCJ 191i internship is not a required course, it is strongly recommended. You may take up to six internship units. 

Digital Journalism

  • MCJ 102W: Reporting
  • MCJ 104: Editing for Digital Journalism
  • Pick four from: MCJ 17 (Photojournalism); MCJ 103 (Journalism and the Military); MCJ 107 (Data Journalism); MCJ 108 (Public Affairs Reporting); MCJ 109 (Law and Order Reporting); MCJ 131 (Web Design); MCJ 174 (History of Media, Communications and Journalism); or MCJ 190 (Independent Study)

Film and Media Arts

  • MCJ 4: Writing for Visual Media
  • MCJ 60: Introduction to Film Studies
  • MCJ 115: Field Video Production
  • Pick one from: MCJ 116 (Documentary Film and Video Production) or MCJ 117 (Narrative Filmmaking)
  • Pick two from: MCJ 17 (Photojournalism); MCJ 111 (Post-production); MCJ 112 (Audio Production); MCJ 113 (Advanced Television Studio Production); MCJ 114W (Screenwriting); MCJ 116 Documentary Film and Video Production); MCJ 117 (Narrative Filmmaking); MCJ 118S (Corporate and Nonprofit Media Projects); 119E (Creative Media Production and Entrepreneurship); MCJ 120 (Multimedia Production Studio Practicum); MCJ 136 (Media Projects) or MCJ 163 (Radio/TV as Popular Culture)

Chart of each option's requirements.


Electives

Each MCJ student must take sufficient elective units to meet the required total units (approximately 26 units).

Minors

The department now offers three minors. Here are the requirements for each:

Advertising/public relations minor (18 units)

A student must take MCJ 2, MCJ 40, MCJ 144W, then must pick three courses from either MCJ 143, MCJ 146, MCJ 147S, MCJ 150, MCJ 157S, MCJ 158S, MCJ 180, MCJ 190 and MCJ 191.

Film and media arts minor (21 units)

A student must take MCJ 4, 15, 60, and 115, then either MCJ 116 or MCJ 117, and then two courses from either MCJ 17, MCJ 111, MCJ 112, MCJ 113, MCJ 114W, MCJ 116, MCJ 117, MCJ 118S, MCJ 119, MCJ 120, MCJ 136 and 163.

Mass communication and journalism minor (18 units)

A student must take MCJ 1 and MCJ 2, and then at least four other classes with the consent of a department faculty member.

Certificates

The department offers four certificates that are open to all students.

Broadcast Meteorology certificate (13 units)

A student must take GEOG 111 (Meteorology); GEOG 115 (Violent Weather - Climatic Hazards); MCJ 124 (Intermediate Broadcast News Writing), MCJ 128 (TV/Multimedia News Reporting and Production).

Film and Media Arts certificate (15 units)

A student must take MCJ 60; MCJ 114W; MCJ 116; MCJ 117; and either MCJ 111 or MCJ 119.

Spanish Media certificate (13 units)

A student must take SPAN 117 (Advanced Conversation and Reading); SPAN 119 (Advanced Grammar); MCJ 126 (Media Performance); and MCJ 128 (TV/Multimedia News Reporting and Production)

Water and Strategic Media Certificate (15 units)

A student must take MCJ 40; MCJ 180; AGED 66 (Agricultural Communications); AGED 166 (Agricultural Publication Production; and either COMM188T (Environmental Communication), PH124 (Water Quality and Health), PLANT 71 (Agricultural Water), or PLSI 175 (Water Politics and Policy).

Studio Production Certificate (15 units)

A student must take MCJ 4; MCJ 111; MCJ 113; MCJ 123: and either MCJ 15 or MCJ 121. 

Click here to learn more about all the MCJ course offerings. 

MCJ's course offerings

For Students Entering Before Fall 2020

MCJ's old curriculum and options will apply to any student who began studying at Fresno State before Fall 2020.

Degrees

  • BA in Mass Communication & Journalism - Advertising Option
  • BA in Mass Communication & Journalism - Public Relations Option
  • BA in Mass Communication & Journalism - Multimedia Production Option, 
  • BA in Mass Communication and Journalism - Broadcast Journalism Option
  • BA in Mass Communication and Journalism - Print/Digital Journalism Option

The Requirements

Students who began at Fresno State fall 2020 will have some new electives to choose from. Check out the degree requirements for each option in order to see these new electives. 

MCJ's course offerings

Electives

Besides the MCJ courses required to complete your option, students must take liberal arts and sciences and other classes to earn a degree.

For students who started at Fresno State before Fall 2019, click here to see the list of approved liberal arts courses: Liberal Arts and Science Courses

For those who started in Fall 2019 or Spring 2020, please click on your option: