This is a course designed expressly for second-year students on the narrative track. The aims of the course are to help narrative students troubleshoot reporting and writing challenges; develop winning pitches for their stories; compile portfolios; and prepare for the job market. We will workshop stories and pitches, meet with editors, and cover strategies for career success.
This course offers an accessible introduction to science reporting. Students in the course will learn what constitutes the science beat and how journalists find and report such stories. By the end of this course, you will have a robust toolkit of science reporters’ resources in your personal files. Because this is a graduate-level course, we will also go beyond reporting basics to think critically about science reporting. We’ll explore how politics, economics, sociocultural norms, and technology shape science news stories and how such coverage reflects and shapes public attitudes and values with respect to science. We’ll also consider the role of the media as a social and political institution and critique media coverage of science with a focus on issues of representation, identity, and equity. In brief, this course will strengthen students’ abilities to: identify various types of science story ideas; conduct deep background research for science stories; think critically about the production of science news; and locate and analyze several types of primary source documents to inform their science reporting.