November 30th, 2007
A section for students of the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information, NTU.
This is the main path offered to journalism students. It prepares students for writing jobs within the news media. To do well in this career, one needs strong writing skills, an analytical and questioning mind, intellectual curiosity about the world, and the motivation to serve society. Students should take a healthy balance of practical courses plus more conceptual courses that widen their minds and develop their critical faculties.
Students are strongly urged to develop deep knowledge in at least one specialised domain, including by pursuing a Minor. Specialised knowledge is increasingly becoming the cornerstone of a successful career in journalism.
In the Lower Division, COM204 Basic Media Writing and COM221 News Reporting & Writing provide the fundamentals in practical journalism. Reporters are counted on to assess and select information, so COM202 Information Literacy and Interpretation has special relevance. Writing for the Chronicle provides invaluable hands-on training.
COM251 Comparative Press Systems is recommended as a way to understand the relationship between journalism and society in countries where students may one day work, building on COM203 Media Professions & Practices, which is more Singapore-focused.
In the Upper Division, COM412 Advanced Writing Workshop and COM413 Advanced Reporting Workshop help to hone one’s craft. “Group B” subjects introduce students to specialisations for which there is a strong demand from industry.
COM417 Public Affairs Reporting is devoted to the coverage of national issues and is relevant to most local media organisations. Students should match this course with relevant electives such as COM459 Public Opinion and GERs such as HA205 Government and Politics of Singapore. Those with a strong interest in this area are advised to pursue a Minor in Public Administration from HSS.
COM418 Business and Economics Reporting is a specialisation highly sought after by local and international news organisations. This course will help overcome any fear of numbers and jargon that journalism students may have. Students who want to develop this specialisation are strongly advised to pursue a Minor in Business from NBS or a Minor in Economics from HSS, or at least take relevant GERs from these schools.
Other specialised writing courses may be offered under COM419 Contemporary Topics. Depending on the topics offered, interested students should pursue matching GERs or Minors. For example, students interested in arts and cultural reporting can consider a Minor in English Literature from HSS, or do theoretical subjects from the Broadcast & Cinema Studies track at SCI, such as COM252 Cultural Studies. Science and technology reporting can be supplemented with relevant GERs from other schools.
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