​Mission Statement

The mission of the Department of the Journalism is to foster in its students the skills, values, and practices associated with professional journalism and strategic communication; to further their understanding of how those attributes intersect with local, national,​ and global citizenship; to demand critical thinking; to challenge them to be the creators of and leaders in a constantly changing communication environment, and to fully engage with diverse audiences.


The goals of the Department of Journalism at CMU are:

  • Goal 1: Provide students with a body of knowledge and a system of inquiry and scholarship that inform and enrich their professional preparation.
  • Goal 2: Prepare students with job skills necessary to establish accountability to employers.
  • Goal 3: Prepare students for a profession in which they are accountable to clients and the public for their ethics, service and professional competence.

Educational Outcomes

Students with a major in journalism at Central Michigan University can expect to receive a liberal education with a balanced curriculum that will provide professional competency, knowledge, values and specialized competencies.

Liberal Education

Central Michigan University will provide education in disciplines that develop knowledge about the modern world and which includes understanding of the different ways of thinking and knowing the arts and humanities, social and behavioral sciences, and natural and mathematical sciences.

Through its Department of Journalism, this education will include understanding of how government, commerce, philanthropy and multicultural diversity have evolved and function in the communities in which journalists and communicators live and work. Knowledge about the modern world should also include understanding of the history, functions, processes and effects, law, and ethics of journalism and mass communication.

Balanced Curriculum

Central Michigan University’s Department of Journalism will provide education in a typical undergraduate format. Graduates can expect to be knowledgeable in liberal arts and sciences, theories and concepts of journalism and mass communications, and competent in the skills of the profession.

Students are required to take courses outside the major area of journalism and mass communications, many in the liberal arts and sciences; and a minimum of 12 semester hours within the major in theoretical and conceptual courses, such as in the history, processes, effects, law and ethics of journalism and mass communication; the courses must be academic (as opposed to professional in nature) and must be genuinely liberal arts and science in content.

Supervised experience in journalism and mass communication is also encouraged with no more than three semester courses (or their equivalent) allowed for academic credit. These hours do not count in the requirement for theoretical and conceptual courses.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Basic concepts – Identify and explain the basic concepts of journalism and mass communication necessary to be a professional practitioner
  • History and Roles – Explain the history and role of business entrepreneurs, innovators, professionals and institutions in shaping communications
  • Globalization – Explain how globalization and convergence affect the functioning of the media in modern society
  • Independent investigation – Conduct independent investigation to gather, analyze, organize and synthesize information (words, images, numbers) on a contemporary topic
  • Communicate through media – Communicate information (words, images, numbers) effectively to particular audiences and through specific delivery systems
  • Language, images and numbers – Effectively use language, images and numbers in their work
  • Editing – Effectively edit their own work and that of others
  • Evaluate sources – Evaluate credible and diverse sources of information and opinion
  • Technologies – Use the tools and technologies appropriate for the profession in which they work
  • Critical thinking and collaboration – Think critically, creatively, independently and collaboratively
  • Manage work tasks – Manage work tasks to comply with deadlines
  • Visual communication – Basic application of visual communication concepts into effective graphics and layouts
  • Diversity, laws, policies, social relationships and cultures of America – Explain the relationships between issues of diversity and laws, policies, social relationships and cultures of America
  • Diversity in the workplace – Discuss issues involving diversity that arise in the workplace
  • Laws – Apply principles of the First Amendment and the law to issues that arise in professional practice
  • Professional dispositions – Demonstrate respect for others and the professional disposition necessary to be a successful journalism or other media-related practitioner
  • Journalistic process and product – Demonstrate accuracy, fairness and truth in journalism process and product