- Course Delivery
- Fully Online
- Total Credits
- In-State Tuition Per Credit
- Out of State Tuition Per Credit
Earn your degree from the University of Nebraska - Lincoln
Get the same diploma as on campus students
The online Journalism & Mass Communications, MA with a specialization in Professional Journalism degree is designed to build and enhance professional knowledge, skills and leadership in journalism and mass communications.
Students choose this program because:
- They are currently working in the journalism field and seeking to enhance their journalism skills and knowledge in the digital media world.
- They wish to learn how to produce and analyze news and information across multiple platforms
- They are interested in an individualized experience tailored to their journalistic and educational experiences
- A non-thesis option is available.
The Professional Journalism specialization is one of two specializations offered within the Master of Arts in Journalism & Mass Communication online program. Upon completion of the program the specialization will appear on your diploma and transcript indicating specific expertise in this area.
As traditional media has evolved into different mediums, the journalism profession has evolved. Journalists nowadays have to be proficient in areas such as social media, online publishing and multimedia as well as strong copywriting skills.
Upon completion of the specialization in professional journalism, students can apply the knowledge they have learned to a multitude of career paths including:
- News Reporter
- Broadcast News Analysts
- Multimedia Journalist
- News Anchor
- Sports Reporter
- Social Media Reporter
Joe Weber, worked in magazines and newspapers for 35 years. He spent most of that time, 22 years, reporting and writing for BusinessWeek, starting as a correspondent in Dallas and then running the magazine's bureaus in Philadelphia, Toronto and Chicago. He took on the role of chief of correspondents for the organization in early 2006, serving until the summer of 2009.
To be accepted to this program, you must have:
A bachelor's degree
Degree in journalism and mass communications or related area from an accredited institution
2.50 GPA or above on a 4.0 scale
Taken the TOEFL or IELTS
(Only required if English is not your native language)
A written personal statement
State your goals and objectives
3 letters of recommendation
Official transcripts from all previous schools
Portfolio of work
To apply to this program:
- Apply and be admitted to Graduate Studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln
- Pay the non-refundable $50 application processing fee
- Submit one set of official transcripts from each college or university you have attended to Office of Graduate Studies
- Apply and be admitted to the department
- Fall Semester
- February 1
- Spring Semester
- September 1
Under this degree option you will earn a minimum of 36 semester credit hours, at least 18 of which must be earned in courses open exclusively to graduate students (900 or 800 level with no 400 level counterpart)
The program includes a minimum of 18 credit hours in the major. Students complete a capstone project and intensive coursework in place of a minor.
Fifteen hours of core coursework is required and 21 credit hours are open to elective credit.
|Mass Media Issues & Ethics||3|
Course Number: JGRD 901
Ethical framework for exploring current issues in mass communications. (Open to graduate students only.)
Course Number: JGRD 902
Skills and technologies involved with multi-platform journalism and management. (Open to graduate students only.)
Course Number: JGRD 903
Current issues in business management related to the media environment. (Open to graduate students only.)
Course Number: JGRD 992
Development of thesis topic may come from JGRD 992. JGRD 992 is designed for increasing competency in professional practice and depending on goals, may be concentrated in ADVT, BRDC, or NEWS. Translation of social, political and economic affairs to mass audiences in both print and electronic media. (Open to graduate students only.)
Course Number: BRDC 462/862
Produce multiple long-form, edited television programs to be distributed to a mass audience. Directing a weekly, live, thirty-minute television studio newscast. Advanced operation of studio equipment, graphics software and non-linear editing equipment. Prepare demo materials for a professional portfolio.
Course Number: BRDC 469/869
Production of single and double system sound films. Production of videotapes for television. BRDC 469/869 is a continuation of BRDC 359 and 371. Prereqs: BRDC 359 and 371.
Course Number: BRDC 472/872
Produce multiple live weekly newscasts with anchors (news, sports, entertainment, social media) to be distributed to a mass audience. Advanced reporting skills, knowledge of graphics software and non-linear editing equipment. Prepare demo materials for a professional portfolio. Prereqs: BRDC 371, BRDC 370, and JOUR 202.
Course Number: BRDC 473/873
Depth reporting and advanced production techniques necessary for the preparation of a broadcast documentary program.
|Seminar in Media Law||3|
Course Number: JGRD 809
Reading, discussion and research on current issues in mass media law or theoretical bases for freedom of expression. (Open to graduate students only.) Offered online synchronously (students and instructor meet in real-time).
|Seminar in Media History||3|
Course Number: JGRD 811
Readings and discussion of major issues, events, and people in the history of mass media in the United States. (Open to graduate students only.) Offered online synchronously (students and instructor meet in real-time).
|Mass Media Theory||3|
Course Number: JGRD 915
Process and effects of mass communication. (Open to graduate students only.) Offered online synchronously (students and instructor meet in real-time).
|Methods of Mass Media Research||3|
Course Number: JGRD 919
Research concepts and procedures with emphasis on methodology and research techniques in mass communication. Development of competency in consumption and interpretation of research combined with an introduction to research design, analysis, and decision making. (Open to graduate students only.) Offered online synchronously (students and instructor meet in real-time).
|Mass Media & Government||3|
Course Number: JGRD 954
Process and effects of regulatory information control procedures of federal, state, and local government. (Open to graduate students only.) Offered online synchronously (students and instructor meet in real-time).
|Politics and the Media||3|
Course Number: JOMC 408/808
Current issues in media and politics, domestically and internationally.
|Literature of Journalism||3|
Course Number: JOMC 412/812
The roles and effects of mass media and major works exemplifying the practice of journalism. Offered online synchronously (students and instructor meet in real-time).
|Race, Gender & Media||3|
Course Number: JOMC 422/822
Multicultural and gender diversity issues within the mass media. Broadcast news, print, and advertising media messages of racial, ethnic, and gender based minorities including African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Americans, Native Americans and women. Open to non-College of Journalism and Mass Communications majors. Offered online synchronously (students and instructor meet in real-time).
|Mass Media Law||3|
Course Number: JOMC 486/886
The legal basis for freedom of speech and press. The limitations imposed upon rights by statute, common law and court decisions. Resolving conflicts between those rights and other constitutional rights. Enhancing critical-thinking and writing skills. Roles, rights, and responsibilities of mass media in a free society through analysis of cases. Offered online asynchronously (students and instructor do not meet in real-time).
|Mass Media & Society||3|
Course Number: JOMC 487/887
Interrelationships between the American mass media and society, integrating ethics, theories and contemporary issues. Offered online asynchronously (students and instructor do not meet in real-time).
Course Number: JOUR 401/801
Long-form writing, interviewing, computer-generated research, refined writing and teamwork in the creation of a single-subject project.
|Digital Photojournalism I||3|
Course Number: JOUR 404/804
News, feature, sports and picture-story journalism. Student work in JOUR 404/804 will appear on student news website.
|Digital Photojournalism II||3|
Course Number: JOUR 406/806
Building visual skills to recognize action, reaction and/or emotion, and incorporating them into the shootings and pictures. Work in JOUR 406/806 will appear on the student news website.
|Investigative & Computer-Assisted Reporting||3|
Course Number: JOUR 407/807
Conduct investigative and in-depth reporting by using documents and computer databases, interviewing and field research to write compelling stories.
|Government Controls of Information||3|
Course Number: JOUR 414/814
Laws, regulations and practices by which federal, state and local government enhance or retard access to information about the executive, legislative, and judicial branches. Offered online synchronously (students and instructor meet in real-time).
Course Number: JOUR 467/867
Problems and procedures involved in producing school newspapers, yearbooks, literary magazines and radio and/or video projects.
|Nebraska News Service||3|
Course Number: JOUR 489/897
The Nebraska News Service functions as a statehouse news bureau for client news organizations throughout the state, generating original spot news and enterprise stories as well as responding to specific story requests from news service clients.
|Global Multimedia Photjournalism Project||3|
Course Number: JOUR 490/890
Research and then visit a selected country and produce a multimedia story dealing with an emerging country in which there is need. Spend eight weeks conducting story research then travel to the country either during winter break or in May. Spend three weeks in the country while working on the story then finish writing and editing upon your return home.
Course Number: JOUR 891
Topics vary each term.
Cost for Nebraska Residents
Per Credit Hour
- Tuition: $356.50
- Fees: $52.25
- Total: $408.75
3 Credit Hours
- Tuition: $1069.50
- Fees: $156.75
- Total: $1226.25
Cost for Out of State Residents
Per Credit Hour
- Tuition: $652.00
- Fees: $52.25
- Total: $704.25
3 Credit Hours
- Tuition: $1956.00
- Fees: $156.75
- Total: $2112.75
Questions about tuition? We can help.
What's it like to take a program online?
Quality learning experience
The University of Nebraska has offered distance education courses for more than 100 years so you can expect a quality, rigorous experience. Online courses are often highly interactive with faculty and students communicating through e-mail, discussion forums and chat groups. You’ll have direct access to world-class faculty – researchers who are experts in their fields or practitioners with real-world experience. Also, you’ll be part of a community of learners and can benefit from the perspectives of students from across the globe.
Online learning gives you the flexibility and freedom to attend your classes wherever is convenient to you. You can save time and money by being able to continue to work and by avoiding relocation or travel costs. You will be required to complete assignments in a certain timeframe, but in most instances, you can log in and complete coursework during the time of day that works best for you. You aren’t tied to a specific class time.
Service you expect from a leading University
Online learners at the University of Nebraska have access to the same student services available to on-campus students. An academic adviser will guide you along your journey, library services are available to help you excel in your program and career services are available when you are ready to take your next step. These are just a few of the services in place to help you succeed.