Hofstra University, School of Communication

Fall 2009 Syllabus JRNL 10 (Journalism Tools)
Assistant Professor Mo Krochmal Department of Journalism, Media Studies, and Public Relations.

Instructor Information
Mo Krochmal, Assistant Professor of Journalism, Media Studies, and Public Relations School of Communication, Hofstra University Website: http://krochmal.posterous.com Office Telephone: 516 463 4338 Hofstra E-mail: maurice.krochmal@hofstra.edu Personal E-mail: mo.krochmal@gmail.com Office: 147 Dempster Hall Fall Semester Office Hours Monday – 3-4:30 Wednesday – 3:00-4:30 And, by appointment.


Every student enrolled in this course is responsible for understanding and complying with the information, requirements and policies contained in this syllabus. Please read this syllabus thoroughly so that you are familiar with the format, policies, requirements and any deadlines. You should also have it for reference throughout the rest of the semester.


Dear students, Welcome to JRNL 10, which for many of you will be one of the first journalism courses you take in your Journalism, Media Studies, and Public Relations majors in the Hofstra University School of Communication. This is a time of great upheaval in the field of journalism and of great concern is about the place that tools and skills hold in the great mix of skills and abilities that a 21st Century multiplatform journalist must have. This course will give you basic training and experience in journalistic tools and skills you will absolutely have to have to go along with your writing and reporting proficiency, and your ethics. You need to be aware that this course expects you to be knowledgeable about standard grammar, spelling and punctuation. You will be expected to learn Associated Press style by looking it up in the stylebook. Let's nurture curiosity, and your desire to discover and to adopt professional techniques. You absolutely must be flexible and adapt well to change. You should also fine-tune your critical thinking skills and apply them to your creativity and you should always be thinking about the economics of the field and how you might be able to create entrepreneurial opportunities as you learn these skills. You should know that you will need to work faster and faster, and yet be accurate and concise. You will learn how to present your reporting live in the classroom, or in front of a camera in the field or in the studio. You will critique your work and that of your peers. I look forward to working with you throughout the semester in this classroom and in the NewsHub, where your classroom training will blend with the tremendously valuable experience of working on a real-time deadline.

Sincerely, Mo Krochmal Assistant Professor of Journalism, Media Studies, and Public Relations


If you have any documented disability-related concerns that may have an impact upon your performance in this course, please meet with me within the first two weeks of the semester, so that we can work out the appropriate accommodations. Accommodations are provided on an individualized, as-needed basis after the needs, circumstances and documentation have been evaluated by the appropriate office on campus. For more information on services provided by Hofstra, and for submission of documentation of your disability, please contact: Ann Marie Ferro in 101 Memorial Hall at 516 463-5341 (for physical and/or psychological disabilities) or Dr. Diane Herbert in 202 Roosevelt Hall at 516 463-5761 (for learning disabilities and/or ADHD). All disability-related information will be kept confidential. COMMUNICATION Please make sure that you forward your Hofstra e-mail address to your favored e-mail address. The professor may send you class or individual information through your official Hofstra e-mail address. COURSE DESCRIPTION Journalists in the multimedia and Internet age need a variety of new skills and tools to effectively tell their stories to the public and succeed in the profession. This course will introduce students to a number of different tools journalists use to gather information, audio and pictures/video as well as produce stories for a converged or multi-platform media environment. The course is required in the accredited journalism curriculum of the Department of Journalism, Media Studies, and Public Relations.

GOALS The journalism program aims to make sure students are exposed to the skills they will

need in multimedia journalism early in the journalism curriculum and then go on to master them in later, more-specialized classes. This is an introductory skills class. OBJECTIVES Students become familiar with a variety of methods for gathering and disseminating news. The class is not expected to provide students the opportunity to master any one tool, but instead, expose them to the wide variety of tools available for use in modern journalism. Students learn the basics of gathering information and media. They will also be introduced to the use of digital still photography and videography and the use of these media in modern news gathering. Students will learn: how to use computers and software for writing and editing copy, how to use content management systems, how and where to gather and organize data, how to record and edit audio, video and digital images, and how to weave these together into articles for publication. The students will learn the technical aspects of journalism tools and will be able to discuss the ethical and communication consequences of their increasing usage. Students are required to work at minimum 1 hour a week in the NewsHub, the department’s multimedia newsroom, staffing the assignment desk. Students will learn new skills in each class and these skills will accumulate. Students will learn and expand their abilities with real-world projects and assignments as well as written examinations and practical tests. REQUIRED TEXTS/READINGS Multimedia journalism is a new and growing field. We will use two textbooks to cover the range of tools that this course addresses. Available at the student bookstore, this is your official textbook for this course: "Convergent Journalism, an Introduction." By Stephen Quinn, Vincent F. Filak. 2005, Focal Press Title, ISBN: 978-0-240-80724-9. Available for free download is the second required text at http://www.kcnn.org/resources/journalism_20/, is “Journalism 2.0: How to Survive and Thrive. A digital literacy guide for the information age” Download, print out and put in a binder. In addition to the required readings in the textbooks, you are required to be informed on the news. GRADING CRITERIA

No letter grades will be given for papers, tests, quizzes or projects during the semester. You will receive points for each assignment. At the end of the semester I will add up the points and weight them according to the percentages listed below. Your points then will determine your grade based on this scale: A = 95-100 A- = 90-94 B+ = 88-89 B = 84-87 B- = 80-83 C+ = 78-79 C = 74-77 C- = 70-73 D+ = 68-69 D = 64-67 F = 0-63 Final grades are determined by the following formula. Assignments/events 20% NewsHub participation 15% Midterm Exam 5% Final Exam 10% Final Project 15% Class attendance, participation, punctuality 20% Learning Journal 15% TOTAL 100%

All assignments are turned in by mail to me as an attachment in Microsoft Word 97-2003 format At the top of each assignment Word document you will complete a slug consisting of: NAME: Your Name CLASS: JRNL 80 DATE: Today's Date ASSIGNMENT: No.1, etc. BYLINE: By Jane Doe (Jane.Doe@gmail.com)

E-mail's subject lines are formatted by NAME, CLASS, DATE, ASSIGNMENT NUMBER. Example: Jane Doe, JRNL80, 9/9/09, Assignment No. 1 You will have a 1-hour window (10 p.m.-11 p.m.) the night before we meet to turn in your work.


Because of the rapidly changing nature of the field, the class may diverge from the order of the assignments as written in the syllabus, or may extend or narrow the time for each learning segment.

ATTENDANCE POLICY Attending class and arriving on time are important to your grade. Please be punctual. Attendance will be taken at the start of class. I rely on my attendance records as the official attendance roster. Internship/job interviews, doctor’s appointments, late night at The Chronicle, etc. are not excused absences. You must provide documentation for funerals and sickness immediately upon your return to class. If you miss class, I expect you to send me an e-mail that day you missed the class to explain why. The professor is not responsible for re-teaching a class that you miss. You will need to look at the syllabus and speak with your classmates to pick up what you miss. We will cover a lot of information in each class. ASSIGNMENTS/REQUIREMENTS See course schedule for assignments. Assignments not e-mailed to me before the start of class will not be counted. You will have a 1-hour window, from 10 p.m. until 11 p.m. the night before the class, to file your assignments. Assignment Work will be assessed on a 4-point scale (0=Fail, 1=Poor, 2=Average, 3=Superior). You must use Microsoft Word for your assignments and you have to save your file as a Word 93-2003 formatted Document -- without formatting such as paragraph indents and "curly" quotes -- and attach it to an e-mail with the Class Number and Assignment Name in the subject line. For success: Come to class on time, every time. Do your work on deadline, show your work/cite your sources, participate in class, communicate with your professor and respect your classmates. Ask questions, that's what journalists do. Get excited/inspired, and share your learning.


Each week you will make an entry into your learners' journal, a website available only for the class. You will reflect on the readings, or write a list of new words and their definitions, or ask a question about something you want to learn. You will also be required to contribute questions or comments to your classmates' posts.

COURSE SCHEDULE Class 1 -- Introduction, overview of the course. The goal of this class is to quickly establish community and to get students prepared for the semester and the operation of this classroom.

Reading for Class 2: Textbook: Convergent Journalism Chapter 3, "Words: The Foundation Stone of Journalism;" Chapter 4, "Broadcast Writing and Speaking;" Chapter 5, "Writing for the Web." Web reading: How, and where, to hyperlink within a news story, By Robert Niles, 2008-02-15, via Knight Digital Media Center. Active Voice and Passive Voice in Web Content Writing Assignment for Class 2: Write a 200-word essay reacting to the readings. Include links.

Class 2 – Writing, the keystone of any form of journalism. Writing is the cornerstone of journalism, no matter the medium. In this class, we will establish practices and disciplines for students to follow throughout the semester.

Reading for Class 3 Managing Personal Data: What We Have, What We Need Exposed, by Emily Gould (NYTimes, May 2008) Online, your private life is searchable, LA Times, Aug. 18, 2009 Writing for Class 3 Create a professional written profile of yourself (50 words) that highlights your interests, and 9

links to any writing on the web.

Class 3 – Research, Information Skills Review the reading and discuss the care and consequences of posting personal information online. Students will expand their knowledge of search techniques and learn how to set up RSS feeds and alerts for text and multimedia..
Reading for Class 4: Society of Professional Journalists Code of Ethics Online Journalism Ethics New Media Trends by Kendyl Salcito Writing for Class 4 Write a 50-word essay on your personal code of ethics for journalism.

Class 4 -- Ethics We will discuss journalistic values, how we articulate these values and how the public sees how we do things and how we can help the public take on these ethics in citizen journalism. Students will learn about credibility, attribution, copyright, corrections and other fundamental considerations in using non-original information in journalism.
Reading for Class 5: News Organizations Implement New Social Media Ethics Policies, Poynter Assignment for Class 5 –Students will write a 200-word reaction to the reading and list 5 bullet points for the class to discuss in creating social media policies for student journalists.

Class 5 -- Social Networks, Community in Journalism We will examine the growth of social networks in journalism; explore the ethics; and know the benefits and limitations of these new tools.


Reading for Class 6: -- Convergent Journalism, Chapter 2 "The Multimedia Assignment Editor and Producer." -- Journalism 2.0, Chapter 4: "New Reporting Methods" --Think like a Journalist, via NewsTrust Writing Assignment for Class 6 – Write a 200-word reaction to the readings and news value.

Class 6 -- Reporting Students will be introduced to best practices and expectations in reporting and the concept of news value.
Reading for Class 7: Convergent Journalism, Ch. 9, "Editing for Moving Pictures." Microsoft MovieMaker Manual (via Amherst College). MovieMaker Tutorial (video) Assignment for Class 7 – Check out a FlipCam and video interview people -- not your friends -- on a current news event. Take notes. Identify the person with name, age, occupation and home town. Write an article of 200 words with headline+lede that integrates the quotes, and provides proper attribution and includes links. Upload to Blip.tv

Class 7 – Video Production Students will learn how to use the Microsoft MovieMaker software embedded in all PCs to edit audio, video/images and create slideshows. This will be the backbone for video news article production over the remainder of the semester. Students will be responsible for being able to edit audio and levels, edit video frame-by-frame, combine audio and video and voiceover, insert transitions, create slideshows with narration, create lowerthird graphics and how to post these for publication. Students will check out FlipCams to conduct interviews and learn how to interact professionally with the equipment room and how to care for equipment.

Read for Class 8: Journalism 2.0, Ch. 7, "Digital Audio and Podcasting;" Convergent Journalism: Chapter 10, "Multimedia Journalism: Putting it all Together."


Assignment for Class 8: Interview people about a current news event, collect natural sound and then produce a 1-minute audio story using video from the FlipCam, voice on tape, and natural sound. Save it as a video file but the images are not necessary.

Class 8 – Convergence Students will look at the news and journalism environment to get an understanding of the idea of convergence and multimedia in journalism and ideas surrounding that in journalism higher education.
Read for Next Class: J-School: The Right Tools Teach the Right Mindset, by Amy Gahran Journalism training must face up to rapid change, by Andrew Grant-Adamson, Jan. 17, 2007 News Publishers Debate Journalism's Future Live at Aspen Summit, Huffington Post Aug. 16. Assignment: Write a reaction and set a goal for your learning in this course that reflects an understanding of your reading.

Class 9 – Content management Content management systems are the backbone of today's journalism enterprises and their functionally is basically similar. Students will get experience in the concepts of CMS, and learn how to enter stories, how to mark them up, and correct them in these systems.
Assignment for Class 10: Access the class/individual websites. Post your previous writing in this reverse chronological order (profile, personal ethics, class goal) by deadline. Make sure you have formatted it correctly; print out your completed work and bring that to class. Reading for Class 10: Convergent Journalism, Ch. 7, "Digital Still Photography." Journalism 2.0, Chapter 8 "Shooting and Managing Digital Photos

Class 10 – Photography Basics Going beyond Facebook pictures. Students will leave this session with knowledge that will improve their skills in taking journalistically viable still photographs and how to write full and complete captions to accompany them.

Read for Class 11: Journalism 2.0, Chapter 4: "New Reporting Methods." Assignment for Class 11: Take at least 72 pictures of a Day in the Life of someone interesting – not a friend. Post the photographs on Flickr or Picasa. Print out your photographs as a contact sheet, and then select 6 pictures that tell the story of this day. Write captions for each. Print out. Then create a slideshow and turn in the embed code with a blurb and caption.

Class 11 – Computer Assisted Reporting Students will learn how to access and evaluate web 2.0 tools that can enhance productivity and efficiency in reporting.
Read for Class 12: Journalism 2.0, Ch. 6, How to Report News for the Web. Assignment for Class 12: Find 5 different reliable sources for a news article using Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn, or YouTube. List these sources with links, and in 50 words, defend your assertions.

Class 12 – Spreadsheets, Databases Spreadsheets can be the backbone of many a reporters' repertoire. Students will learn how to do simple mathematics and analysis using spreadsheets. Students will be expected to master figuring percentage and percentage change.
Read for Class 13: Convergent Journalism , Ch. 6, ”Converged Graphics Across All Media." --Charticle Fever, AJR Assignment for Class 13: Find a database from a reliable public source and export a set of data to a Google spreadsheet for analysis. Write an article based on what you found.

Class 13 – Visual Students will examine the visual aspect of journalism in broadcasting, print and online. They will be responsible for understanding the value that visuals can add and appropriate and value-adding use of graphics.
Assignment: Create at least one graphic from your database exercise. Sketch, or print out. 13

Class 14 – Review for Midterm Class 15 – Midterm Examination Students will have a practical deadline exercise and a written examination.
Read for Class 16: Convergent Journalism, Ch. 8, "Digital Video Photography."

Class 16 – Live video on deadline Students will explore live digital reporting techniques, ranging from streaming video to Twitter, to CoveritLive. Assignment for Class 17: Students will team up and collaborate on designing a live web news operation, describing how it will be covered and particular tools to use. Class 17 – Mobile Reporting Students will learn about the new mobile tools that are available to journalists and will be required to post from their cell phones.
Read for Class 18: Chapter 11: Writing Scripts, Doing Voice-overs, Journalism 2.0 Assignment for Class 18 – Post your mobile reports to Tumblr/Posterous site.

Class 18 – Screen-based Production In this class, students will learn how to produce multimedia content from their computer with screen grabs and screencasts as well as finding copyright cleared video, photography and music. Assignment for Class 19: In MovieMaker create a 2-minute news package using text graphics, pictures and sound to tell a story. Class 19 – Selling Your Work With the state of change that journalism finds itself in, one of the important skills any journalist can have is finding places to publish your work. In this class, we will explore the world of budgets, freelancing, per-hour charges, and entrepreneurship.


Reading for Class 20 -- Tips for surviving as a freelancer Adam Westbrook blog.
Assignment for Class 20: Find as many places as possible – get links, a person's name, website name of any places where you might submit your final project for either pay or credit. No less than 5 outlets will be acceptable.

Class 20 – Final Project Students will prepare a pitch for a final package that will demonstrate their ability to report and produce a converged article that has video and text elements as well as other multimedia. The pitch should show evidence of research, preparation and news value and should be simple enough to have a good chance to be executed successfully and potentially published outside of the class. Read for Next Class: Journalism 2.0 Chapter 5: How to Blog Class 21 -- Blogging In class assignment: We will conduct real-time coverage with a blog post on a news event with links. Read for Next Class: Chapter 3: Tools and Toys, Journalism 2.0 Class 22 – Final Product, Rough Draft Assignment: Students should have rough drafts of a 1:30 video package and a 200word article with hyperlinks. Students will present their packages in class for critique and final editing instructions Class 23 -- Podcasting, vlogging, mobilecasting Final project presentations continue.

Class 24 -- How everything comes together in the world of new media. What’s expected of today’s multimedia journalists. Read for Next Class: Journalism 2.0 "Epilogue: Putting It All Together." Class 26 – Students will present their final projects with edits for review and critique.

Final Examination Students will upload their final projects into a content management system then take a practical examination and a written test covering the readings and lectures of the semester.


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