Humanities & Social Sciences

Degree awarded: Associate in Arts

Program Narrative

Northampton's Journalism Program provides the foundation for a career in the dynamic, digital, 24/7 world of the news media in the 21st century. The major prepares students to transfer into a four-year degree program or to become working journalists at an entry level. The program emphasizes practical skills in print and Web journalism for students with no experience and provides those with some experience an opportunity to enhance their skills.

Journalism at NCC focuses on reporting news of interest, relevance and usefulness to the college community, especially its students. This approach stresses "learning by doing," which means students will work in the field covering issues, trends and events at the school, as well as those outside the school that affect the NCC community. The flagship of the program is The Commuter, the student newspaper, which is published online and in print.

Graduates with reporting skills and a baccalaureate degree can expect to begin their careers at local newspapers, Web publications or other news outlets, as well as public relation firms, corporate communications offices, or other employers who rely on communications specialists.

Program Features

Our journalism students are expected to participate in the college newspaper, The Commuter. Students at NCC focus on the community, both the College community and the surrounding area. We encourage our students to report on local issues that affect the College and its students. Students work in the field covering events at the school and in the cities. This practical hands-on approach gives students exposure to situations similar to those that professional journalists encounter every day.

Electives offer students the chance to begin specializing in one aspect of journalism prior to transferring to a four-year institution. Students can focus on radio and television production, photography, multimedia production and more.

Courses in this program are offered primarily during the day.

Contact the Admissions Office at 610.861.5500 for more information.

Program Outcomes

Graduates of the program will:

  • Be critically aware of the roles, legal rights and ethical responsibilities of journalists in a multicultural society.
  • Demonstrate ability to edit copy for appropriate, correct English and Associated Press (AP) style.
  • Be able to write interesting headlines and captions fitting an article or photograph.
  • Be able to find, source, research, and cover news and feature stories for print and the Web.
  • Be able to use various narrative techniques in news and feature stories for print and the Web.
  • Be able to put together a multimedia piece of reporting.
  • Demonstrate ability to collaborate on news or feature stories for at least two media.
  • Be skilled in the basic operation of desktop publishing tools.
  • Be skilled in the basics of publishing to the Internet.
  • Be able to use a journalistic style to plan and produce copy for a public relations campaign.


Associate in Arts Degree

Course Code Course Title
First Semester
ARTA 171 Desktop Publishing
CMTH 102 Speech Communication
ENGL 101C English I
JOUR 101 Journalism and Society
JOUR 102 News Editing
Second Semester
CMTH 104 Mass Media and Society
ENGL 151L English II (Literature)
JOUR 103 Newswriting
POLS 251 State and Local Government
------------- Elective
Third Semester
JOUR 201 Feature Writing
SOCA 103 Principles of Sociology
------------- Arts and Humanities Elective (AH)
------------- Mathematics Elective (QL)
------------- Elective
Fourth Semester
JOUR 202 Digital Journalism
JOUR 203G Writing for Public Relations
CMTH 180 Multimedia Production
GEOG 101 World Geography



Science Elective (SCI)
Total Credits

Elective credits may be selected from the following groups or any AA/AS applicable elective or an AAS applicable elective upon the approval of the Journalism department.


  • CMTH 120 Radio Production
  • CMTH 170 TV Production
  • CMTH 182 Advanced Multimedia Production


  • ARTA 151 Black and White Photography


  • ENGL 253 Creative Writing


  • CMTH 105 Public Speaking
  • CMTH 126 Communication Arts
  • CMTH 110 Introduction to the Theatre
  • CMTH 220 Introduction to Film
  • MDLA___ Modern Languages
  • Completion of both ENGL 101C and ENGL151L satisfy the computer literacy requirement.
  • Completion of JOUR 203G satisfies the program-related writing intensive (WI) requirement. In addition, one General Education Elective must be taken in a Writing Intensive (WI) section.
  • Students are expected to participate on The Commuter every semester.

Career Potential: Transfer program, leading to: Newspaper reporter, On-line journalist, Media relations

NCC students have transferred to: Temple University, Penn State University, NYU, Kutztown University, East Stroudsburg University

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