students work on layout in the Independent work room

Two students work on laptop

Students in the College News Production class work as reporters, editors, photographers, videographers and designers of The Independent, the student-run print and online news publication which has garnered awards from the Washington Community College Journalism Association and the Associated Collegiate Press, the nation‘s largest college student media organization.

The Journalism program features faculty with professional media experience and provides real-world opportunities for students who report on campus events and issues of significance to the college community. The Journalism program also provides training and opportunities that can be useful in fields such as technical writing, law, politics, publishing, community and public relations, public information, advertising and other communication-based careers.

Journalism students can earn a regular AA degree with a certificate in News Media Studies which requires the completion of five core courses in writing and reporting, multimedia news production, mass media studies, college news staff and writing for the web and additional coursework in layout, video production, social media or photography. The certificate helps set a foundation for students looking to transfer to schools throughout Washington, including Washington State University, Western Washington University, Central Washington University and the University of Washington.


Information Request Form

Request Information

Degree Options

Clark College’s Journalism program prepares students who plan to transfer to a four-year institution as well as those seeking success in a workplace that requires clear writing and thoughtful inquiry. Our coursework also helps all students become more responsible consumers of news and information.

We offer a News Media Studies certificate designed to provide students with a clear pathway to greater success and preparation for transfer. Details about the 24- to 25- credit course of study appear below.

The core course is JOUR 101, Introduction to Journalism, a five-credit writing-intensive class that includes a study of the changing news media landscape as well as instruction in the basics of news reporting and writing.

Students looking at careers or further study in journalism, public relations, public affairs, politics, law, and communications should consider taking JOUR 111, which is our Digital News course, and JOUR 110, College News Production. College News Production provides students an opportunity to further develop meaningful hands-on skills by working on the print and online editions of the award-winning student news product, the Independent.

Several paid positions on the Independent are available each quarter for students, ranging from copy and section editors, designers, photography editors, and multimedia editors.

In addition to Clark's journalism courses, students should take a variety of courses that offer a broad general education and prepare them to transfer to a four-year school offering a degree in journalism or a related field. CMST& 102 provides a foundation for understanding how the media function in our society and is highly recommended. ENGL& 101, 102, and ENGL 103 are designed to improve a student’s ability to write and do documented research accurately. Courses in the social sciences (particularly political science), history, literature, and science provide a background for accurate reporting and the interpretation of data.

Students should make every effort to develop relevant computer skills while at the community college. These skills include word processing, graphic design, and multimedia production, including photography and video production.

Because course requirements vary at each institution, a student interested in a four-year degree in Journalism should work with advisers at Clark and the transfer institution. Journalism courses typically transfer to four-year institutions. However, a student should contact the transfer institution to clarify each course's transferability.
News Media Studies (AC)
For students who want expertise in journalism and news media, this concentration may be earned along with a regular AA degree, and will be awarded upon graduation.
Core Courses
JOUR 101
5 cr.
JOUR 111
5 cr.
JOUR 110
COLLEGE NEWS PRODUCTION (3 credits required between JOUR 110-130)
1-3 cr.
JOUR 120
COLLEGE NEWS PRODUCTION (3 credits required between JOUR 110-130)
1-3 cr.
JOUR 130
COLLEGE NEWS PRODUCTION (3 credits required between JOUR 110-130)
1-3 cr.
ENGL 127
3 cr.
5 cr.
Additional Coursework
Choose one course from the following list:
CGT 103
4 cr.
CGT 201
4 cr.
CGT 106
3 cr.
ART 131
3 cr.
Total Required Credits: 24-25
Program Outcomes
Program outcomes are overarching skills that are emphasized and reinforced throughout several courses in a specific program; they are measurable statements that define what students should know or be able to do by the end of a certificate or degree at Clark College. After successful completion of this program, students will be able to:
  • Students who complete the News Media Studies Certificate will be able to explain current news media principles and practices and appropriately apply fundamental news production skills.