Kent State University offers an online Master of Arts in Media and Journalism with an optional concentration in Journalism Education. The program is offered through the College of Communication and Information’s School of Media and Journalism, and is affiliated with the Center for Scholastic Journalism at Kent State. The master’s degree can be completed entirely online without making any campus visits. Kent State University uses the Blackboard Learn learning management system for its online degree programs. Through Blackboard Learn, students can access their course materials, submit assignments, communicate with instructors and classmates, participate in online discussion boards, access university services, and more.
The Master of Arts in Media and Journalism requires 33 credit hours of study and can be finished in approximately two years of full-time enrollment. The curriculum is broken down into major requirements (five courses for 15 credits), concentration courses (three classes for nine credits), and electives (three courses for nine credits). The core coursework introduces students to the central concepts of mass media and journalism, mass communication research methods, the role that mass media plays in both historical and contemporary society, principles and practices of effective digital media, and key methods and best practices for media reporting, writing, and editing. Students who choose to not declare a concentration take three additional electives in place of their concentration courses (for a total of six elective classes or 18 credits). For their electives, students have the freedom to choose courses across several different departments within the College of Communication and Information, including not only the Communication Studies Department but also the Departments of Health Information, Emerging Media and Technology, Knowledge Management, User Experience Design, and Library and Information Science.
The Journalism Education concentration focuses on preparing its students to teach journalism and mass media theories, principles, and strategies across diverse education settings. The concentration courses enable students to delve further into journalism pedagogy, including classes in teaching journalism ethics and mentoring media students and professionals. Students also take three additional electives that do not have to be specific to journalism education, and which can include areas such as health informatics, knowledge management, user experience design, and visual communication to help round out their graduate education in mass communication.
Note: As Kent State University also offers a campus-based Master of Arts in Media and Journalism, students interested in the online program specifically should contact a program advisor to determine which electives for this program are offered online, especially if they wish to complete the program entirely through distance learning.
For their culminating experience in the program, students can choose between a final Master’s Professional Project (MPP) and a traditional thesis. Students who choose the Journalism Education concentration must select the Master’s Professional Project option. While the thesis is a traditional work of academic scholarship that investigates a research question relevant to the field of media and journalism, the MPP is a more applied, industry-focused endeavor. For the MPP, students select a topic of personal and professional significance to them and build a communication deliverable that enables them to apply the concepts they have learned in their classes. For students of the Journalism Education concentration, a key parameter of their MPP is that it contributes to or fulfills a need in the field of scholastic media or journalism pedagogy. Students work under the guidance of faculty mentors to complete the project, and at the end of the Master’s Professional Project course or thesis they must present their project or thesis before their faculty advisors.
Kent State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Online Master of Arts in Media and Journalism - Journalism Education Concentration
Department: School of Media and Journalism
Websites: Department and Program
Structure: Online program with no required campus visits
Instruction Methods: Classes use a combination of synchronous and asynchronous instruction
Campus Visits Required: No
Program Length: Program can be completed in as few as 2 years
Start Dates: Fall, Spring and Summer admission
Curriculum and Graduation Requirements
Credits Required: 33 credits (10 courses plus capstone)
Thesis Required: No
Capstone Options: Master's Professional Project
Example Courses: Theory and Societal Role of Mass Media; Mass Communication Law and Ethics; Principles and Practices of Digital Media; Reporting, Writing and Editing for Media; Advising Student Media; Teaching Journalism Ethics
GPA Requirements: Minimum GPA 3.0
Testing Requirements: GRE not required (Effective Spring 2020 the GRE is no longer required)
Admissions Requirements: Bachelor's degree; resume or CV; goal statement/statement of purpose; writing sample; two letters of recommendation
Estimated Tuition*: ~$17,700 + fees (In-State); ~$18,000 + fees (Out-of-State)
Cost per Credit Hour: $536 per credit hour (Ohio residents); $546 per credit hour (Out of State residents)
State Authorizations: Program accepts students from all 50 states