New digital journalism classes launched

Allison Browne

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Throughout the ‘50s and ‘60s, City College’s journalism program produced a yearbook by the name of “Legend.” Now, nearly 60 years later, the name is being revived as the title of City’s newest publication – a features magazine. The new magazine is a part of the new Digital Journalism program.

“This is the first major change to the journalism program in at least five decades,” Associate Professor of Journalism and Media Roman Koenig said. “I was looking at catalogues from the ‘50s with the exact same course numbers and descriptions. It is long overdue.”

The new course offerings are designed to teach students the skills necessary to keep up with the constantly evolving and expanding digital media market.

“We want to introduce an entirely new program to replace the original. We want to approach instruction in a way that allows for us to deal with all digital platforms holistically,” Koeing explained. “Journalism is not gone. It is just being offered in a different way.”

The program took nine years to be launched, with the initial research and planning beginning in 2004 and is the first of its kind within the San Diego Community College District. The changes do not affect Miramar or Mesa’s course offerings.

Students looking to transfer or receive a degree will not be effected by the changes. Many of the new classes correspond with courses offered in the past and the new offerings are articulated, meaning they fit into transfer plans.

The new magazine class, called Specialty Publications, is a hands-on production class with a printed publication once a semester and supplemental content online.

Online content is not limited to written work and will include video and picture slide shows. Students will learn a longer, more in depth style of journalistic writing, along with studio photography and page design. While there are no prerequisites, it is recommended that students have a strong grasp of English and writing.

The radio and television department has also been updated to reflect the changing media market. It has been renamed the Radio, Television, and Film department and now also includes a collection of Digital Media Production classes.

“We’ve basically taken multimedia and updated it. It sets up students to learn for web-based and broadcast journalism,” said Communications Department Chair Laura Castaneda. “It will be very confusing at first, but students will eventually benefit. This was three years worth of work, but it will be worth it if a student leaves knowing what they want to do, and they have the knowledge to succeed.”

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