MASS MEDIA | Reach New Populations

 

At larger state schools, being a mass media major usually means a lot of waiting. But at Baker University, our students have the opportunity to contribute to award-winning, student-run print and online newspapers, radio, and TV stations as early as the second semester of their freshman year. To create a personalized education experience, we offer three tracks for media majors—public relations, multimedia, and sports media—designed with flexible, integrated curriculum to fit your interests.

 

GET INVOLVED

Baker mass media students have a multitude of opportunities for involvement in and out of the classroom, including the award-winning media outlets KNBU-TV, KNBU Radio, and the Baker Orange newspaper.

DEVELOP YOUR SKILLS

Professors will work with you in small classroom settings to learn the skills that interest you. You’ll have abundant opportunities to go above and beyond, building your portfolio as soon as day one.

THE SKY’S THE LIMIT

Our students, from freshmen to seniors, can be found broadcasting Baker football games in the press box at Liston Stadium, winning Pacemaker and personal awards at national journalism competitions, and interning at multimillion dollar public relations firms in Kansas City.

MEET LIFELONG MENTORS

Relationships with professors extend beyond the classroom and beyond graduation. Students are regularly invited back to campus to speak after graduation, and professors continually provide graduates with career and professional advice.

TERA | Multimedia Major, Class of 2014

As a freshman, Tera joined the staff of the university newspaper. She was an award-winning photographer, print designer, and graphic designer. As a senior, she interned as a photographer for the Kansas City Chiefs. And after graduating, she worked with the Atlanta Falcons and she is now with the Daytona International Speedway.

TAYLOR | Mass Media Major, Class of 2016

Taylor’s main interest lies in graphic design, but when the position for editor of The Baker Orange opened up, she knew from her experiences in the Baker Department of Mass Media that she would be a perfect candidate. During her time as editor, she won regional and national awards. Taylor came to Baker with a passion and graduated with the knowledge needed to start her career as a graphic artist with Cumulus Media.

KHADIJAH | Exercise Science Major, Class of 2016

Although she’s not a media major, Khadijah spent much time with the Baker Orange, working as the photography editor and logging numerous hours in the newsroom. She found a passion for photography and was able to earn a participation award and a work-study position, both of which helped her fund her college experience.

CAREERS

Our mass media majors have landed these jobs:

  • Digital media coordinator for NFL teams
  • Social media specialist
  • New York Times best-selling author
  • Broadcast journalist
  • Public relations coordinator

%

of Baker graduates are employed full time or enrolled in graduate school within six months of receiving their diploma.

MASS MEDIA TRACKS

MULTIMEDIA

The multimedia track reflects the modern version of traditional journalism in online and digital forms. The multimedia track emphasizes strong writing skills and production knowledge including publications design and video editing. Students on this track are also exposed to the growing demand for digital skills such as website creation and management. Completing the multimedia track prepares students for jobs in traditional newsroom settings, internet-based companies, and graphic-intensive fields.

PUBLIC RELATIONS

One of the fastest growing professional fields is public relations. PR practitioners shape organizational messages and craft organizational images. Understanding the ways in which media operate and respond to PR messages is central to the Baker program. PR professionals are the ones who plan, execute, and evaluate an entity’s communication plan, be it through agency, corporate, or nonprofit positions. Students who complete the mass media major on the PR track will be ready to work in this exciting field, but they will also have the versatility to work in sales, marketing, advertising, and corporate communications.

SPORTS MEDIA

The sports media track takes the best elements of our multimedia and public relations tracks and combines them with elements of sports management and administration. Students on the sports media track will emerge from the program with valuable professional skills that are in demand for careers in sports public relations or college sports information offices. Sports media students are also well prepared to pursue careers in sports broadcasting.

Course Descriptions

R: course can be repeated for credit; P/NC: course graded on a pass/no credit basis

Courses required for these programs are listed in the current catalog.

MM 105 – Basic Video Production 3 hrs.

This course will review and refine editing and camera skills while focusing on development of storyline, pre-production, and post production. Enrollment limited to students in Blue Valley’s CAPS concurrent credit program

MM 140 – Mass Media and Society 3 hrs.

This course is a study of the technological growth and impact of our media environment on the individual and society as a whole. Special emphasis is placed on the political-legal, economic, sociological, and psychological effects of mass media on American life.

MM 170 – Digital Photography I 3 hrs.

This course provides instruction in black and white photographic procedures including shooting, processing, and printing techniques. In addition to classroom time, weekly darkroom time is required as scheduled. The student must provide a camera appropriate for the course.

MM 205 – Introduction to Broadcasting 3 hrs.

This course is designed to introduce both majors and non-majors to radio and television broadcasting. Television and radio will be explored as sources of both entertainment and information. Students will examine the historical roots of broadcasting but focus most of their attention on the modern-day challenges faced by the industry, such as shifts in media ownership, media convergence, and ethical dilemmas. Programming genres, including talk radio, reality TV, and news, will also be explored.

MM 230 – Digital Media I 3 hrs.

This course will emphasize basic skills for digital media, including photography, Web design, and content management. Students will have hands-on instruction for incorporating a variety of media – such as text, graphics, audio, still photography, and video – onto a single platform. While the class primarily focuses on Internet-related media production, students may also be able to adapt content for other uses.

MM 232 – Graphic Design 3 hrs.

This course is an introduction to graphic design as a form of visual communication through the use of image, form, color, and type. The course will consist of a series of lectures, daily critiques, demos, in-class discussions, and in-class work time. Students will be introduced to the fundamental principles of graphic design and will explore formal composition principles, graphic design methodology, and approaches to digital layout. The course will include practical exercises in visual perception, visual organization, and visual communication. (Cross-listed as AS 232.)

MM 241 – Newspaper/Online Workshop 1 hr.

This is the laboratory course in newspaper. Students in this course are members of the newspaper staff and will participate in production of The Baker Orange and Orange Online in at least one of the following ways: writing, editing, layout and design, photography, pagination, circulation, or advertising sales. The course is designed to prepare students for internships and permanent employment in print and online news media by acquainting them with the industry’s professional standards. Prerequisite: MM 170 or MM 250 or permission of the instructor. R

MM 243 – Radio 1 hr.

Students will work as members of the staff of KNBU-FM, the campus educational non-commercial radio station. They will be responsible for maintaining a weekly shift on the radio station as well as preparing the necessary production elements to support their on-air activities. R

MM 244 – Television 1 hr.

Students will work as members of the staff of KNBU-TV, the campus educational cable TV access channel. This class will focus on the creation of video projects that will be used as programming on KNBU-TV. Students will also discuss how to get a job in the television industry. R

MM 248 – PR Workshop 1 hr.

In this workshop, students will share and critique work created in the course, become familiar with the Public Relations Society of America’s code of ethics, and make presentations of their work to various constituencies. Students will prepare a portfolio of their work which will be evaluated at the end of the semester and can be used to seek professional internships and employment. Prerequisites: MM 250 and 260. R

MM 250 – Writing for Mass Media 3 hrs.

This course teaches basic news reporting and writing skills for print and online media with an emphasis on recognizing and weighing news values and developing news judgment and news ethics.

MM 260 – Introduction to Public Relations 3 hrs.

This course is designed to introduce students to the basic concepts and principles of public relations. Students will learn the very different ways PR can be viewed from organization to organization and the various roles PR practitioners might play depending on corporate or organizational structure. Issues of message development, strategy, development of publics, research, writing, and post-message evaluation will also be emphasized.

MM 261 – Public Relations Writing 3 hrs.

This course will include instruction and writing practice designed to develop the professional-level writing skills expected of public relations practitioners. The instructor will emphasize approaches required for corporate, agency, and non-profit approaches, as well as writing suitable for different audiences and media forms. Prerequisite: MM 260.

MM 270 – Sports Broadcasting 3 hrs.

This course emphasizes performance with a focus on play-by-play in football and basketball. Students will also receive voice training. The course will teach students how to prepare and deliver game broadcasts and sports shows in a professional manner with lab work in the field and on campus station KNBU-FM.

MM 271 – Sports Broadcasting Lab 1 hr.

This workshop course is designed to give students an outlet through which they can practice and hone the skills learned during MM 270. Prerequisite: MM270. R; P/NC

MM 285 – Introduction to Social Media 3hrs.

This course explores the ways in which social media have grown beyond interpersonal curiosities to become required tools of use for many professionals, including journalists, public relations practitioners, and those in business fields like marketing and advertising. Students will investigate the ways in which social media contribute to the public sphere beyond personal relationships, including political and economic power, reflections of culture, and privacy issues. Students will leave the course with a greater understanding of social media and the ways in which they contribute to personal and professional endeavors.

MM 310 – Sports Writing 3 hrs.

This course will acquaint students with the professional expectations for sports writing and announcing. Students will write sports-related stories, including features, game coverage, and columns. Students will learn via hands-on assignments involving university athletic teams. Prerequisite: MM 250 or permission of the instructor.

MM 320 – Video Production 3 hrs.

This class is designed to introduce students to the basic principles of video production. The course will emphasize knowledge of four major components of media production: content acquisition, encoding of data, editing, and data storage. Students will learn not only how to identify worthwhile media content and how to operate cameras and editing equipment, they will also learn the finer techniques of production, including video shot composition, edit sequencing, and digital video effects. Upon completion of the course, students will create a major project that may air on KNBU-TV, Baker’s student-operated television station.

MM 325 – Advertising 3 hrs.

This course focuses on the role of mass media advertising in a free market economy. Advertising is examined from both a management and creative perspective, emphasizing both the theoretical and practical aspects of organization and staffing, marketing research, consumer behavior, media buying, advertising/marketing strategy and tactics, planning, evaluation, design/art/graphics, copy writing, and advertising agency/client relations.

MM 330 – Digital Media II 3 hrs.

This course will emphasize advanced skills for digital media, including photography, Web design, and content management. Following a two-week review of fundamentals and a three-week overview of interactive software, the class will be organized around a series of intensive hands-on projects requiring the integration of text, graphics, audio, still photography, and video. Students will produce projects intended for Baker University student media or area commercial media outlets. While the class primarily focuses on Internet-related media production, students may also be able to adapt content for other uses. Prerequisite: MM 230 with a grade of C or higher.

MM 331 – Mass Media Ethics 3 hrs.

This course is designed to give mass media practitioners and consumers an understanding of ethical decision-making in American newsrooms and other venues in which media content is created. This discussion-based course is tailored to upperclassmen and exceptional sophomores who have a basic knowledge of the press and other media. A substantial research project is required.

MM 340 – Public Relations Cases 3 hrs.

This upper-college level course is designed to apply many of the principles learned by students in introductory public relations coursework. Students will explore elements that contribute to successful strategy development for corporate, agency, and nonprofit public relations, and then examine specific case studies that illustrate the variety of challenges that might present themselves to public relations practitioners. Before learning final case outcomes, students will be challenged to identify positive and negative characteristics of the cases under examination. Prerequisite: MM 260.

MM 341 – Editing 3 hrs.

This course provides instruction in the editing and rewrite techniques for print and online news, including spelling, grammar, headline writing, and style according to the Associated Press Style and Libel Manual. Prerequisite: MM 250 or two writing courses in English. (Cross-listed as EN 341.)

MM 342 – Publications Design 3 hrs.

This course develops skills used in the design and production of newspapers and other print media. Special attention will be paid to page layout, publications design, and computer pagination.

MM 345 – Advanced Reporting 3 hrs.

This course places emphasis on developing reportorial expertise within the student’s specialty, including developing interviewing techniques; writing multi-source stories; investigative, interpretive, public affairs, and sports reporting; feature and opinion/editorial writing; and special interests reporting (finance, education, music and culture, entertainment, science, etc.). Prerequisite: MM 250 with a grade of C or higher.

MM 370 – Digital Photography II 3 hrs.

Students expand on techniques and theories learned in Digital Photography I. While emphasis is placed on the technical uses of basic color digital imaging and photographic manipulation, the course primarily addresses aspects of color theory, perception, aesthetics, and the use of color in photographic and digital image creation. Thematic series are introduced as a way of exploring complex concepts. Prerequisite: MM 170 or AS 170 or permission of the instructor. (Cross-listed as AS 370.)

MM 376 – Media Theory and Methods 3 hrs.

This course introduces students to key mass media theories in an effort to understand how media affect audiences and societies. Prerequisite: Junior or senior status.

MM 430 – Opinion Writing 3 hrs.

This is a course for experienced and confident writers who want to develop their skills within the genre of opinion writing, specifically editorials, reviews, and columns. Students will read and discuss examples of these persuasive writing forms and will experiment with various approaches through written assignments. In addition, students will receive extensive practice critiquing the work of classmates. Students should be comfortable having their writing discussed in class. Prerequisite: MM 250 or two writing courses in English.

MM 470 – Public Relations Campaigns 3 hrs.

This course will allow students to take the informational and theoretical foundations from previous Public Relations courses and apply their knowledge to the development of a full-fledged PR campaign. Students will work with community organizations to develop a campaign that emphasizes research, planning, communication, and evaluation, all while keeping the client’s wants and needs in mind. Students will work in groups to develop campaigns, with the goal of producing an extensive portfolio outlining their proposal. Upon completion of the class, the plan will be handed off to the organization in hopes that they will carry out the proposal. Students will also emerge with a portfolio suitable for presentation to potential employers. Prerequisites: MM 260, MM 261, and MM 340.

MM 476 – Senior Seminar in Mass Media 3 hrs.

This course is the culmination of study for Mass Media majors at Baker University. Students will use the class as an opportunity to review what they have learned in previous courses, to examine current issues relating to relevant topics, and to provide a sense of completion for coursework. Students will discuss ways to seek employment in the media and the reasons why one might wish to attend graduate school. They will also complete a major paper applying mass media principles and present it before peers and program faculty. Prerequisites: MM 376 with a grade of C or higher and senior status.

MM 478 – Mass Media Law 3 hrs.

This course is designed to acquaint the student with the ramifications and interpretations of laws and court decisions relating to mass communications law. Prerequisite: Junior status or permission of the instructor.

MM 280, 480 – Media Practica 3 hrs.

The Mass Media Practicum is a value-added internship experience designed to prepare future mass communicators for the media professions, to assist them with their entry into the working world, and to provide an opportunity for students to share their experiences with other students. Prerequisites: At least one semester’s participation in MM 241, 243, 244, or 248. For MM 480: MM 280 or permission of instructor. R; P/NC

Scholarships

The Department of Mass Media and Visual Arts gives these awards with financial prizes to be applied to the following year’s tuition:

  • Mildred Hunt Riddle Departmental Recognition Scholarship for Art
  • Mildred Hunt Riddle Departmental Recognition Scholarship for Mass Media
  • Lloyd E. Ligon Memorial Scholarship
  • Eulalia Weber Guise Scholarship
  • Eugene C. Pulliam Journalism Scholarship
  • David Sloop Memorial Scholarship
  • Sherri Wood Memorial Scholarship
  • Nancy and Carl Spear Scholarship
  • Jerry Holley Scholarship
  • Frank and Joyce Leitnaker Scholarship
  • Harold Davis Colburn Scholarship
  • Jesse L. Jones Scholarship

leaf  MASS MEDIA SCHOLARSHIP

Baker University offers participation scholarships to students who plan to be involved in the Baker Orange campus newspaper, KNBU campus radio station, or KNBU-TV campus television station.

Priority will be given to applications received before March 1.

Additonal Application Requirements

To apply for this scholarship, you must complete the online application and submit the following application materials. You must also have been admitted to Baker and may be required to interview with the department faculty.

  • Resume
    Your resume of high school activities, honors and employment should demonstrate both work ethic and achievement.
  • Three samples of work in the mass media or in high school classes 
    Samples should  demonstrate your potential for success in media work. These samples might include published or unpublished writing samples, websites or pages you have designed, or audio or video your have produced. If you have questions, please ask.
  • 300-Word Essay
    Your essay should reflect your interest and career goals related to journalism and mass media.
  • Letter of recommendation from a teacher or employer 
    The recommendation should be from someone who can speak about your potential for success in mass media classrooms and workshops.

Submit Materials

Baker University
Department of Mass Media
Attention: Dr. Laura Young
PO Box 65
Baldwin City, KS 66006
laura.young@bakerU.edu

STUDENT LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES

DIALOGOS RESEARCH SYMPOSIUM
Dialogos creates opportunities for the free exchange of ideas among scholars. Students from every part of the academy present original works, in a variety of forms and mediums, and engage with an interdisciplinary community of peers, staff and faculty. The symposium also features a keynote address from a prominent Baker alum. Through open and critical discussion, participants learn from and contribute to the betterment of the whole. At Dialogos, to quote John Wesley, we "think and let think."
Dialogos creates opportunities for the free exchange of ideas among scholars. Students from every part of the academy present original works, in a variety of forms and mediums, and engage with an interdisciplinary community of peers, staff and faculty. The symposium also features a keynote address from a prominent Baker alum. Through open and critical discussion, participants learn from and contribute to the betterment of the whole. At Dialogos, to quote John Wesley, we "think and let think."
BOOK Program
Students are encouraged to participate in the BOOK Program (Baker Organizational Observation for Knowledge) to enhance their internship experiences. The program encourages students to look deeper into organizations by researching the history, mission, structure, products and services, finances and management of the company. At the conclusion of the program, presentations are given in front of a panel of judges who choose the winner of a cash prize.
BOOK Program
Students are encouraged to participate in the BOOK Program (Baker Organizational Observation for Knowledge) to enhance their internship experiences. The program encourages students to look deeper into organizations by researching the history, mission, structure, products and services, finances and management of the company. At the conclusion of the program, presentations are given in front of a panel of judges who choose the winner of a cash prize.

FACULTY

Dr. Joe Watson

Dr. Joe Watson

Professor of Mass Media, Chair of Department of Mass Media & Visual Arts | joe.watson@bakerU.edu

Dr. Joe Watson has always been a news junkie. And after an Emmy-winning career in the field, he took to teaching students the ins and outs of media. For him, the most rewarding part of teaching is being able to develop relationships with his students—ones that tend to last way past graduation. But more than that, he enjoys being a part of a department that “allows students to get their hands dirty.” When he’s not busy molding the minds of future journalists and broadcasters, he travels around the world and learns world languages.

B.A. Pittsburg State University, M.A. The University of Akron, Ph.D. Kent State University
Expertise: broadcasting, broadcast news
Office: Pulliam 201 | 785.594.7855
Tom Hedrick

 

 

 

 

 

Tom Hedrick

Instructor of Mass Media & Communication, Voice of the Wildcats | tom.hedrick@bakerU.edu

B.A. Baker University, M.A. University of Kansas
Expertise: broadcasting, member of the Kansas Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame
Office: Pulliam 304 | 785.594.4541

Laura YoungDr. Laura Young

Assistant Professor of Mass Media, Public Relations | laura.young@bakerU.edu

Dr. Laura Young leads the public relations program and applies experiential learning opportunities in all of her courses. With a background in risk and crisis communication, Dr. Young teaches students how to strategically design messages for specific audiences. Her classes are a healthy mix of lecture, meaningful discussion, and hands-on application, specifically applying the use of social media and technology from a strategic standpoint. Dr. Young’s research also supports her teaching with a focus on internal and external communication processes in high-risk, high-consequence environments, such as fire departments. Specifically, she explores how inevitable organizational change, such as budget cuts or change in leadership, influences internal satisfaction and external image and reputation. Dr. Young greatly enjoys teaching in a small classroom, where she is able to work one-on-one with students to improve strategic writing skills. When she is not teaching, she is choreographing for a high school show choir or traveling the world and meeting new people!

B.A. Nebraska Wesleyan University, M.A. DePaul University, Ph.D. University of Kentucky

Expertise: public relations, risk and crisis communication, strategic message design
Office: Pulliam 205 | 785.594.8302

CONTACT US

Kathy Elliott
Department Assistant
Mass Media & Visual Arts
Office: Pulliam 206
785.594.4509
kathy.elliott@bakerU.edu