New Summer Term Courses Give Students the Opportunity to Get Ahead

This summer, UW-Madison’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication will offer two classes that are new to summer term — Principles and Practices of Reporting and Principles and Practices of Strategic Communication.

Better known as J335 and J345, the classes are required for students before enrolling in advanced coursework. The courses will meet online four times a week from June 19 through August 13.

Lindsay Palmer headshot
Lindsay Palmer, SJMC Associate Professor

Lindsay Palmer, Associate Professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, will instruct students enrolled in Principles and Practices of Reporting. Her class, J335, links the Mass Communication Practices (J202) course with upper-level classwork by fine-tuning students’ reporting skills.

“It’s always been meant as a bridge between 202, which is that bootcamp class that everybody has to survive and get through, and those 400 and higher level classes, so we really emphasize fine-tuning lead writing, nut graphs and doing stories from different beats,” Palmer said.

Pete Long, Teaching Faculty in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, will instruct students in Principles and Practices of Strategic Communication. His course, J345, will guide students through a simulated campaign plan, teaching them the skills they need to advance through other strategic communication curriculum.

Pete Long Headshot
Pete Long, SJMC Associate Faculty Associate

“This class isn’t only the unlock for the higher level courses, but it’s really giving students the skills that they’ll need to be successful in those courses,” Long said. “For a lot of students, this is the first time they’re putting the skills that they’re going to use in an internship or a full-time job to use.” 

Because each course is taught virtually, students working in internships or other summer jobs outside the Madison area this summer will also have the opportunity to get ahead on their coursework, Long said.

Both Long and Palmer taught these courses virtually over the pandemic. “I think I’ve made a lot of changes based on that experience that really would allow us to do the course in person or virtually without missing a beat,” Long said.

Long and Palmer hope students will enroll in these classes to catch up either before or after studying abroad or to stay on track for graduation if they couldn’t get a spot in the spring semester.

“I hope students take advantage of this because it could really change the way that they are able to go about doing their coursework after this point,” Palmer said.