Journalism and Soil, Water and Environmental Science

The School of Journalism now offers five dual degrees in partnership with other units in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. Candidates for the dual degrees must apply to both units. They must complete an application form and pay an application fee for each unit.

Journalism and Soil, Water and Environmental Science

The dual master’s degree program of the Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science (SWES) and the School of Journalism comprises an M.S. in Soil, Water and Environmental Science and an M.A. in Journalism.

The dual degree will help fill the significant demand in the news media and other information industries for graduate students who have an educational background in both science and journalism. At a time when science is having a profound impact on political, economic and social institutions and values, journalists who understand the factors that shape the collection, evaluation and dissemination of information about science and its offspring, technology, are of crucial importance. News reports about issues such as climate change and evolution illustrate clearly how providing journalists with a cross-disciplinary education in science can affect decisions about how information about scientific topics is selected and used in news reports that become part of the global information environment. This coverage, in turn, has a major impact on discourse about science and science policy in this country and others.

Students who acquire the research background, professional training and knowledge of science and journalism make important contributions to discussions within news organizations about the ways in which information about science should be gathered and evaluated. They also help define discussions in the fields of science and journalism about the ways in which this information influences public perceptions and public policy, and, therefore, the effects of science on society.

Dual Master's Degree with SWES and Journalism

Professional Option (51 units)
Journalism Course Requirements (18 units) 
JOUR 506 Introductory and Advanced Reporting (3 units) 
JOUR 507 Reporting with Multimedia (3 units) 
JOUR 508 Journalism Theory and Practice (3 units) 
JOUR 509 International and U.S. Media Law (3 units) 
JOUR 511 Feature Writing (3 units) 
JOUR 590C or F School Media (3 units)

Shared JOUR/SWES Course Requirements (15 units)
JOUR 555 Environmental Journalism or JOUR 572 Science Journalism (3 units)
JOUR 565 Issues in Covering Science & the Environment (3 units)
SWES 515 Translating Environmental Science (3 units)
One thesis or project for a total of 6 units of credit:

  • JOUR 909 Project or JOUR 910 Thesis (3 units)
  • SWES 909 Project or SWES 910 Thesis (3 units)

SWES Course Requirements (18 units)
SWES 518 Introduction to Human Health Risk Assessment (3 units)
SWES 544 Applied Environmental Law (3 units)
Select one:

  • SWES 520 Environmental Physics (3 units)
  • SWES 570 Soil Physics (3 units)

Select one:

  • SWES 525 Environmental Microbiology (3 units)
  • SWES 574 Aquatic Plants & the Environment(3 units)
  • WSM 552 Dryland Ecohydrology (3 units) 

Select one:

  • SWES 562 Environmental Soil and Water Chemistry (3 units)
  • SWES 564 Environmental Chemistry (3 units)

Elective: Select one from the following (3 units):

  • SWES 508 Scientific Writing for Environmental, Agricultural and Life Sciences (3 units)
  • SWES 561 Soil and Water Conservation (summer) (3 units)
  • SWES 595F Conservation Biology: Field Studies in Developing Countries (summer) (3 units)
  • SWES 596B Arizona Water Policy (consent of instructor required) (3 units)
  • SWES 603K Engaging the Public in Environmental Decision-Making (3 units)
  • SWES 603M Global Climate Change and the Law (3 units)
  • TTE 530 Environmental Learning (Education) (3 units)

Total: 51 units

International Journalism Studies Option (51 units)
Journalism Course Requirements (18 units)

JOUR 508 Journalism Theory and Practice (3 units)
JOUR 509 International and U.S. Media Law (3 units)
JOUR 539 Ethics and the News Media (3 units)
JOUR 560 International Media Systems (3 units)
JOUR 589 Research Methods (3 units)
JOUR 596F Media Coverage of International Crises (3 units)

Shared JOUR/SWES Course Requirements (15 units)
JOUR 555 Environmental Journalism or JOUR 572 Science Journalism (3 units)
JOUR 565 Issues in Covering Science & the Environment (3 units)
SWES 515 Translating Environmental Science (3 units)
One thesis or project for a total of 6 units:

  • JOUR 909 Project or JOUR 910 Thesis (3 units)
  • SWES 909 Project or SWES 910 Thesis (3 units)

SWES Course Requirements (18 units)
SWES 518 Introduction to Human Health Risk Assessment (3 units)
SWES 544 Applied Environmental Law (3 units)
Select one:

  • SWES 520 Environmental Physics (3 units)
  • SWES 570 Soil Physics (3 units)

Select one:

  • SWES 525 Environmental Microbiology (3 units)
  • SWES 574 Aquatic Plants & the Environment(3 units)
  • WSM 552 Dryland Ecohydrology (3 units) 

Select one:

  • SWES 562 Environmental Soil and Water Chemistry (3 units)
  • SWES 564 Environmental Chemistry (3 units)

Elective: Select one from the following (3 units):

  • SWES 508 Scientific Writing for Environmental, Agricultural and Life Sciences (3 units)
  • SWES 561 Soil and Water Conservation (summer) (3 units)
  • SWES 595F Conservation Biology: Field Studies in Developing Countries (summer) (3 units)
  • SWES 596B Arizona Water Policy (consent of instructor required) (3 units)
  • SWES 603K Engaging the Public in Environmental Decision-Making (3 units)
  • SWES 603M Global Climate Change and the Law (3 units)
  • TTE 530 Environmental Learning (Education) (3 units)

Total: 51 units

Admission to the Dual-Degree Program
Applicants must apply to and be accepted by both units to qualify for admission to the dual-degree program. The two units will review and make a recommendation about any student who has been accepted by both units and has indicated that he or she wishes to earn dual degrees. Candidates need to complete an application form and pay an application fee for each unit.

Transfer Credit
A request to transfer must be submitted to the Graduate College, in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies or Graduate Adviser in each unit, by the end of the first year. Many of these transfer units may be applicable to requirements in either degree program or may count toward the additional units required of the student.

Thesis
By the end of the second semester of enrollment, students must assemble a thesis committee of at least three faculty members, one of whom serves as the thesis adviser.

The adviser and at least one other committee member must be a tenured or tenure-track faculty memer in Soil, Water and Environmental Science, and at least one must be a faculty member in the School of Journalism. The committee must be approved by the Director of Graduate Studies or Graduate Adviser in each unit. 

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