College of Social and Behavioral Sciences2012-2013


Journalism and Political Science, Bachelor of Science

Modern journalists have a choice of reporting niches to choose from ranging from “info-tainment” to sports and on to public affairs. This degree  sharpens students for careers that clarify and sometimes question the roles of government and politics, at all levels. A strong communication core develops competencies in speaking, writing, and visually demonstrating current events.


What Can I Do with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and Political Science?

When you read or watch the news, do you have an eye for accuracy, fairness, good storytelling, and professionalism? If you're the kind of person who believes that the world deserves the clearest possible view of important news, you might be cut out for journalism. Careers in this field are fast-paced, diverse, and critical to a healthy democracy. The Journalism and Political Science program can prepare you for a career in a diverse range of job opportunities or graduate work. Entering this program means you'll discover how our public lives are organized at the local, national, and international levels. Courses focus on the possibilities for and obstacles to democratic governance.

Earning a journalism degree at Northern Arizona University will help you develop tangible skills and theoretical knowledge. Students gain competence in written, oral, and visual communication as their foundation, adding specialized professional skills in ethics, environmental issues, reporting and editing, and communication and publication law.

Note: If you want to pursue a merged major in Journalism and Political Science, you must complete the communication core classes before applying to the program.

Career opportunities that might be pursued:
  • Editing
  • News directing
  • Speech writing
  • Public information control

With further education, one of these paths is possible:
  • Editing
  • News directing
  • Speech writing
  • Public information control

University Requirements

  • To receive a bachelor's degree at Northern Arizona University, you must complete at least 120 units of credit that minimally includes a major, the liberal studies requirements, and university requirements as listed below.

    • All of Northern Arizona University's liberal studies, diversity, junior-level writing, and capstone requirements.
    • All requirements for your specific academic plan(s).
    • At least 30 units of upper-division courses, which may include transfer work.
    • At least 30 units of coursework taken through Northern Arizona University, of which at least 18 must be upper-division courses (300-level or above). This requirement is not met by credit-by-exam, retro-credits, transfer coursework, etc.
    • A cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 on all work attempted at Northern Arizona University.
    The full policy can be viewed here.



In addition to University Requirements:

  • At least 60 units of major requirements
  • Be aware that you may not use courses with either a JLS or POS prefix to satisfy liberal studies requirements.
  • Elective courses, if needed, to reach an overall total of at least 120 units

Please note that you may be able to use some courses to meet more than one requirement. Contact your advisor for details.

Minimum Units for Completion 120
Major GPA C
Highest Mathematics Required MAT 114
Additional Admission Requirements Required
Progression Plan Link View Progression Plan


Additional Admission Requirements
  • Admission requirements over and above admission to NAU are required.
    • If you want to major in Journalism, you must complete the communication core classes before applying to the program.
Major Requirements
  • Take the following 60 units with a Grade of "C" or better in each course:

    Communication coursework (30 units)Political science coursework (30 units)
    • POS 110, POS 120, POS 201 (9 units)
    • Additional POS courses, excluding POS 220 (Consult with your advisor in selecting courses appropriate for your career aspirations and academic interests. If you repeat an area-studies or topics course more than once with different content, you may count it more than once toward your major requirements.) (21 units)
General Electives
  • Additional coursework is required, if, after you have met the previously described requirements, you have not yet completed a total of 120 units of credit. 

    You may take these remaining courses from any academic areas, using these courses to pursue your specific interests and goals. We encourage you to consult with your advisor to select the courses that will be most advantageous to you. (Please note that you may also use prerequisites or transfer credits as electives if they weren't used to meet major, minor, or liberal studies requirements.)

Additional Information
  • See the School of Communication page for information about the Communication Core, Advising and Student Responsibilities, and Graduation Requirements.
  • All majors must earn the grade of "C" or better in COM 101, COM 200, their required freshman composition course, and their foundation mathematics course.
  • Be aware that some courses may have prerequisites that you must also take. For prerequisite information click on the course or see your advisor.

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