Studies of Global Media - B.A. Degree Requirements

About the Online Program

Welcome to the course description section of the online B.A. in Studies of Global Media offered by the School of Journalism. 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.


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.

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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.

Elective Courses

Students examine the strengths and weaknesses of various media systems using comparative theoretical and conceptual approaches. This course explores some of the economic, political, societal and cultural influences that contribute to both differences and similarities among news media systems. Students explore the impact of state interventions, market-oriented policies and media development initiatives on national media, as well as the influence of transnational news organizations in shaping the global news agenda.
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.
Geographical and political boundaries have resulted in fascinating, sometimes contentious, circumstances for the peoples who live in border regions across the globe, and often become the focus of media coverage. In this course, students examine news media coverage in border regions around the world, paying specific attention to contested areas, such as the borders of Mexico/U.S., Palestine/Israel, North Korea/South Korea and Russia/Ukraine.
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).
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 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.
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.
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 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 course focuses on historical and contemporary issues involving news media in Latin America and the Caribbean. The class concentrates on two sides of the same coin — first, how the global news media have portrayed Latin America and the Caribbean and second, how the news media in Latin America and the Caribbean have covered global news.
Students gain an understanding of the challenges that media professionals face when reporting on a region with competing narratives, authoritarian regimes, citizen resistance, extremist movements and sporadic or ongoing conflict. This course provides an in-depth exploration of regional media organizations as both agents of social change and as reflections of their sociocultural, economic and political environments.
This course focuses on journalistic investigations and collaborations in the public interest within and across countries. Students analyze large-scale projects that have used various tools for investigations, including big data and public records. The course also examines major investigations and collaborations among news media outlets, journalists, nongovernmental and intergovernmental organizations, and other stakeholders.
Students explore major theories and concepts in the field of journalism studies and innovative ways they have been applied in academic and other research to news content, government documents, transcripts of discourse, social media content, visuals, audio, graphics and other media. The course delves into the growing body of literature on the “de-westernization” of theorizing and researching phenomenon in the field of journalism and media studies.
Communicating accurate information to the public about science, health and medicine is more important now than ever. This course examines how misinformation, disinformation, propaganda and cultural cognition influence science and medical news, creating a knowledge gap between the public and our scientific and medical experts. Learn how this knowledge gap was created and what can we do about it.
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 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.

Future courses

  • Science, (Mis)Information and the Media
  • Media in Asia
  • Media in Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Solutions Journalism
  • Media Development
  • Media, Protest & Sports
  • Indigenous Media
  • Food, Media & Politics