Journalism Certificate

What does a Christian Journalist do?

Journalists provide a critical check on the operations of power within a society, exposing both truths and injustices. Recent advances in convergent media technology are altering the journalism profession, demanding that the journalist combine skills in visual storytelling and social media with the time-honored capacities for gathering information, crafting clear prose, and editing.

Christian journalists, in particular, have a significant calling as truth-tellers against the forces of poverty, oppression, disease, and corruption in our world. Christian journalists also can provide crucial perspective and informed insight into the ways that religion intersects with public and private lives. Importantly, the Christian journalist has a vital role to play as an agent of peace within society, relying on investigative and communicative skill to encourage the state in its pursuit of a just social order (cf. 1 Timothy 2:1-4). Today’s proliferation of global digital communication provides greater need for reliability, accuracy, and trustworthiness in the dissemination of news.

What will a Journalism Certificate at Wheaton College mean?

Wheaton’s Journalism Certificate is an ideal preparation for graduate education or entry-level careers in journalism. We feature coursework and professional networking that builds foundational skills and provides advanced experiential opportunities. Our strategic partnership with Christianity Today International will connect qualified students with local internships and global news networking. We also provide need-based support for internships and travel to national or international conferences.

Students pursuing the Certificate will be approved by the Program Coordinator and will be expected to meet regularly with the Coordinator and other Journalism students for program review, networking, and career discussions. Certificate students will be required to attend two co-curricular or extra-curricular journalism events per semester for 4 semesters. Events may include: guest lectures, involvement with The Record or other student publications, consultation with visiting practitioners, participation in World Journalism Institute conferences, and travel to Global Christian Internet Alliance (in partnership with Christianity Today International). Students are encouraged to take advantage of courses beyond the required 24 hours.

Required Courses

12 hours

  • 4 hrs: Media Production, Comm 246
  • 4 hrs: Media and Society (Select one of the following):
    Media Studies, Comm 241; Media, Religion, Culture, Comm 341; Special Topics in Media and Culture, Comm 444;
    Special Topics in Rhetoric and Culture, Comm 454
  • 4 hrs: Journalism, Comm 215 (advanced students may substitute with Comm 415, Special Topics in Journalism)

Elective Requirements

4-6 hours (Choose from among the following):

  • Media Performance, Comm 242
  • Graphic Design I, Art 318; or Documentary Photography, Art 319
  • Writing for Media, Comm 343
  • Feature Writing, ENGW 444 (2 hrs) (with recommended prerequisite: Discursive Writing, ENGW 214 [2 hrs])
  • Special Topics in Journalism, Comm 415 (4 hrs)
  • Special Topics in Journalism, Comm 416 (2 hrs)

Practitioner Requirements

6-8 hours

  • Journalism Co-curricular  (Comm 219) 0 hrs (Pass/Fail)
  • Journalism Practicum (Comm 296) 2-4 hrs  (Pass/Fail)
  • Journalism Internship (Comm 498) 2-4 hrs

At least 6 hours must be in upper division courses from the Core or Elective Requirements.

At least 4 hours of the Practitioner Requirements must receive a letter grade.