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Michigan State University

What is news?

Michigan State University via Coursera


This course will guide you through the basic elements of professional journalism and the news values and ethics of covering real-world issues and events. The overview and examples of the types of news coverage helps introduce the different types of journalism, such as social media, multimedia, print, visual and broadcast, and how professional journalists effectively use each format.


  • Welcome to the Michigan State School of Journalism!
    • You will learn about the School of Journalism, our award-winning faculty and the world-class atmosphere of Michigan State University. We are a special place, where amazing things happen every day.
  • Earning and keeping trust
    • In every module of this course, we will go deeper into journalistic values and ethics. In many ways, these values are what distinguish journalism from the many other kinds of content. You will learn how to move beyond creating content to creating journalism through understanding and using these values.
  • Connecting with audiences and communities
    • You will learn how to reach your audience and community as a journalist, by exploring news reports, interest and importance, and values and ethics.
  • Forms of journalism and their purposes
    • Understanding the ways journalism happens is just as important as knowing how to do it. There are many different types of journalism, as our world is filled with so many things to communicate about: sports, cars, celebrities, movies, war, business, real estate, pets, art...if you can name it, you can do journalism about it.
  • Journalism happens in interesting ways
    • Journalists are working in new and exciting places such as social media. Technology has allowed the profession and journalists to do their jobs in innovative ways. You will learn about how technology impacts journalism, and best practices for blogs, Twitter, Instagram, Periscope, WeChat, Facebook and other realities of engaging in social media.

Taught by

Eric Freedman, Jeremy Steele, Joe Grimm, Joanne Gerstner, Lucinda D. Davenport and David Poulson


4.7 rating, based on 3 Class Central reviews

4.7 rating at Coursera based on 1126 ratings

Start your review of What is news?

  • A good introduction to journalism. Covers ethical issues as well as finding news sources and touches on writing articles.
  • Anonymous
    This course is easy to understand about the importance and practice of journalism, what goes into journalistic storytelling and how to write journalistically for any medium.
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    Amy Lee

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