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BJ Program Information

Bachelor of Journalism (Honours) Program

The Bachelor of Journalism program at Carleton is a four-year Honours program.

You must earn 20.0 credits to obtain a BJ degree. Of those, 8.0 are mandatory journalism courses.

In addition, there is a Canadian history requirement worth 1.0 credit.

Of your remaining 11.0 credits, 4.0 must be from a field other than journalism – and 7.0 are open. This means you can choose electives from journalism and/or follow your interests in other programs.

Many students opt to study “Journalism and …” – in other words, they pursue a Combined Honours degree.

For additional program requirements and course descriptions check the Undergraduate Calendar.

First Year

You will take one journalism course each term in your first year for a total of 1.0 credit.

You’ll learn about the forces that have shaped the news media in the past – and that are changing it today. You’ll learn some basic reporting and writing skills.

You’ll choose your remaining 4.0 credits from other programs. And don’t forget, you must take 5.0 credits in first year.

Your academic standing will be a key factor in determining your admission to the upper years.

To guarantee yourself a space in the second year you’ll need a final grade of at least B+ in one of your first-year journalism courses and at least B in the other, as well as an overall first-year average of at least (based on your 5.0 credits, including your Journalism courses).

Second Year

You will take 2.0 journalism credits.

In your reporting workshop, you’ll learn and practice the techniques reporters use to find stories, conduct interviews, and gather and report information accurately and ethically. You’ll work with classmates to produce publications at the end of the year.

Alongside that reporting workshop, you’ll take a Digital Toolkit course – the basics of storytelling in the digital age.

You’ll also learn how the law applies to the media, from the rules governing the Internet to freedom of expression.

You’ll choose your remaining 3.0 credits from other programs.

Third Year

There are 2.5 credits in required journalism courses at this level.

You’ll report for the School’s award-winning bi-weekly community newspaper Centretown News, which is distributed to households in downtown Ottawa and available online at centretownnews.ca. You’ll also learn how journalists handle ethical dilemmas.

Your introductory workshops in both audio and video journalism will teach you how to use sound and images. You’ll prepare audio reports and newscasts, and master the basics of visual storytelling.

You’ll take a digital reporting course where you’ll use interactive tools, blogs, photography and social media in your reporting.

And you’ll develop more advanced writing and reporting skills in your In-Depth Reporting course.

Fourth Year

You will take 2.5 journalism credits in your final year, publishing stories for readers in the community, listeners over the airwaves and audiences online.

You’ll choose two workshops from a menu of six options.

  • In Centretown News, you’ll produce the School’s award-winning bi-weekly community newspaper.
  • In Capital News, you’ll produce data-driven, multimedia story packages for the wider community.
  • In Midweek, you’ll produce hour-long shows aired on Carleton’s community radio station, 93.1 CKCU-FM.
  • In 25th Hour, you’ll produce short documentaries and in-studio interviews for a series of current-affairs shows.
  • For the two remaining options, you can choose either magazine writing, a media projects course or data journalism storytelling.

You’ll also take one specialized journalism course from the following menu: politics; business; international affairs; social issues; or science.

Finally, you’ll take a 0.5-credit lecture course covering major trends and issues in journalism and media industries.

Apprenticeships Program

Our apprenticeships program gives you the opportunity for “real world” work. It will help you build your portfolio and make professional contacts that will enhance your career prospects.

BJ students in third and fourth year are eligible.

Visit the Apprenticeships website for more information.

"Journalism and ..." - earn a Combined Honours degree

BJ students who want to pursue more intensive studies can opt to do a Combined Honours degree.

You will take all the mandatory courses for the BJ as well as the mandatory courses in the other discipline.

Here are some of the subjects you can combine with Journalism:

African Studies European and Russian Studies Linguistics
Anthropology Film Studies Music
Art History French Philosophy
Biology Geography Political Science
Canadian Studies Greek and Roman Studies Psychology
Communication Studies History Religion
 Economics (or Applied) Human Rights Sociology
 English  Law Women’s and Gender Studies

Additional program requirements and course descriptions are in the Undergraduate Calendar.

How to join us

  • Ontario High School Students
    If you are presently finishing your last year of high school you must obtain your Personal Access Information (login information) from your guidance office before applying online through the Ontario Universities’ Application Centre (OUAC).
  • Ontario High School Graduates and Canadian High School Students
    Apply online at the Ontario Universities’ Application Centre (OUAC).
  • U.S. and International Students
    United States high school students, international students, and international Baccalaureate students, please see information on how to apply on Carleton University’s Admissions website.
Course Offerings & Calendar Descriptions