Studies of Global Media - B.A. Degree Requirements

About the Program

Welcome to the course description section of the B.A. in Studies of Global Media (GLO) offered by the School of Journalism. GLO classes are online, but students on the main campus can take in-person JOUR courses as electives and other courses. With the help of an enrollment counselor or adviser, students also are welcome to take electives in the Africana Studies program, the Department of Communication, the School of Information or other programs.

Curriculum

The flexible curriculum allows students to enter the program in the fall, summer or spring semesters during the first or second sessions. The courses complement one another yet require no prerequisites. Full- and part-time students are welcome.

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Course Requirements

The B.A. degree requires a minimum of 30 units in the Studies of Global Media major. This includes six required core courses (18 credits) and four electives (12 credits). Students are welcome to take as many courses in the major as they would like.

This course explores how the news media around the world shape political, social and cultural conversations in societies and encourage governments to be transparent and accountable to citizens. Students look behind the scenes at how journalists do their job and the sometimes-deadly clash between individual expression and government control. Students who complete the course will become engaged and educated consumers of information who can navigate the complex world of disinformation, propaganda and talking heads.
This course examines the history of visual journalism through the medium of documentary photography from its origins in the 1800s to the present-day digital revolution in multimedia production and data visualization around the world. This survey course is designed to broaden students’ understanding of the role of visual journalism in societies, and across societies, and its power to affect scientific, political, economic, cultural and social change.
The course provides historical and contemporary perspectives on the concepts of power, globalization, networked societies and diffusion of cultural values through various forms of media and how these factors influence news media reporting, digital ecosystems, discourse and communities around the world. Students will use a number of frameworks, including models that examine the global flow of information, to study the impact of these phenomena on communities and societies.
Students explore ethics questions related to cultural bias, political and economic pressure, diverse representation, accuracy, privacy, national security and other pressures on news media. This course provides students with a framework to think critically about media’s obligations to the public. Analyses examine ethical philosophies as they relate to both citizen-driven media and journalists’ roles and responsibilities in various societies and governmental systems around the world.
Freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of association and movement, and rights to public information among other rights are explored in global, regional and country contexts. This course provides historical, philosophical, legal, political, societal and cultural perspectives about values related to online and offline freedom of expression and access to public information in a global context.
This course explores the concept of disinformation and theories of propaganda to contextualize contemporary issues in cases around the world. Also covered are the spread of online misinformation and disinformation, the growing issue of information security in open and closed media ecosystems, public receptiveness to correcting misinformation and disinformation, surveillance tactics targeting journalists and tools for verifying information in text, images, video and audio.

Elective Courses

This course analyzes the history of Latinxs in the United States. Students also examine the history of Latino-oriented, Spanish-language and bilingual news media, as well as news coverage of Latinos and Spanish-speaking communities in the U.S.
This course introduces the study of migrations, diasporic transnationalism and the media in Latin America. Students examine historical perspectives and contemporary trends in migrations from Latin America to Europe, Asia and North America (South-North) as well as migration news within Latin American (South-South).
In today’s world, it is difficult to imagine media separate from technology, given how intertwined the two are. This course examines this intersection and influence of media over technology, and vice versa, in a little more detail. Specifically, this course delves into the various facets of this intersection and relationship and what that means in terms of the media people use, the technology they use and the kind of discourse and society they create as a result of digital affordances and advances. Students explore topics such as media and technology as democratic tools and/or instruments of power, theories related to media technology and learning about different media systems and emerging technological systems prevalent in the global North and South. Students will delve into the importance and influence of social networks at a deeper level than what they may already be familiar with, how WhatsApp is increasing in influence and almost representing the digital global divide, the issue of disinformation and fake news and how advances in artificial intelligence may well influence the future of media.
This course investigates the history and coverage of acts of state and nonstate terror, the interplay between terrorism and societies around the world and media content about acts of terror. Students explore how news media portray terrorism and terrorists, the effects of terrorism and media portrayal of terrorism on the public and the use of propaganda by terror groups and other entities.
From human health to vanishing species, climate change is one of the major challenges facing people around the world. A vast majority of scientists agree that human-made climate change is a major factor threatening the planet’s future, but they worry that measures to stop or modify climate change are not taken seriously enough. What role do media play in this respect, and what role can they play in the future to communicate climate science and alert people of the challenges? How can media connect people’s everyday experiences to the global climate processes? Our exploration of different types of media will take us on a global odyssey into how media portray the problem, its causes and effects, what the future holds and what can be done.
This course surveys the history and functions of social justice media from the 19th century abolition movement to today’s online forms of global social justice journalism. Students consider the theoretical and practical frameworks of social justice media, which serve a swathe of social movements involving human and civil rights, education, labor, immigration, globalization, feminism, environmentalism, ethnic and racial equality, transgender rights and global inequity.
This course examines the rapidly shifting arena of armed conflict and political violence in an intensively and expansively mediated era. Students explore traditional journalistic business, culture and ethics in covering war and the more recent impact of technological transformations, focusing on new digital and social media forms employed by multiple actors and stakeholders.
This course examines how the global broadcast, print and digital news media cover major environmental news and issues around the world and how journalists’ investigations have led to change. The course also highlights the complicated nature of environmental reporting, including interacting with myriad stakeholders, assessing risk, interfacing with scientific uncertainty and racing against deadlines and extinctions.
Students learn of the role and responsibilities of national, transnational and social media in promoting human rights and cultural understanding and in documenting human rights violations at varying levels, such as government oppression, civil or political turmoil, armed conflict, ethnic cleansing and genocide. Conversely, the course also examines the role of human rights instruments and monitoring in protecting media workers and rights to free expression.
In this course we will explore science disinformation, misinformation, the media, and the public. We will begin by examining the hallmarks of science (as compared to pseudoscience and non-science) including the concept of falsifiability. Next, we will discuss the “public understanding of science” and why it is important. We will also study historical examples of science mis/disinformation including the ill-informed 19th century theory of climatology called “rain follows the plow,” the early twentieth century eugenics movement, the Andrew Wakefield autism/vaccine controversy, and other instances of pseudoscience or non-science masking as real science. You will learn about the science of science communication and why people are vulnerable to science mis/disinformation. You will read about and discuss modern problems that impact our understanding of science including the use of pre-print servers where scientific information that has not yet been peer-reviewed is published. We will discuss why some members of the public do not trust experts and expertise and you will learn for yourself hallmarks to look for in distinguishing scientific experts from non-experts. You will also learn how to speak to science deniers and others who question the reliability and accuracy of scientific information. You will cultivate scientific habits of mind and develop a toolbox of tips, tools, and skills with which you can arm yourself against science dis/misinformation.
The documentary genre has long focused on social, cultural, political, economic and environmental issues. This course begins with a selective overview of the history of documentary journalism beginning in the 1920s, then takes a multicultural global perspective of documentary work by comparing and contrasting efforts from Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Latin America and the United States.
This course will take you on a global journey through the law of digital communications, including but not limited to free speech v. hate speech, intellectual property, defamation, privacy, the right to be forgotten, access to information, media regulatory mechanisms and frameworks promulgated by governmental bodies, as well as those regulatory mechanisms and frameworks used by non-governmental bodies (such as the platform “law” concept used by Facebook and Twitter.) You will learn about comparative historical and theoretical legal concepts important to media professionals and responsible digital citizen-scholars.
Students examine the role and responsibility of global news organizations and citizen-based social media in reporting on humanitarian crises that may stem from natural disaster, climate change, the impact of globalization, conflict or social upheaval. This course explores the dynamic interaction among news producers, relief organizations, policymakers, the public and those directly affected by humanitarian crises
This class examines the law of digital communications, including freedom of expression and information online, cybersecurity, surveillance, intellectual property, cooperation/collaboration, libel, privacy, hate speech and regulatory mechanisms. Students learn how to follow current law while engaging with digital communications. Also covered are historical and theoretical foundations of the law of digital communications and professional, ethical and legal decisions about digital communications in a global context.