Graduate Studies Reports Access

Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - PGY5619
Tracking Number - 2957

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Current Status: Approved by SCNS - 2014-04-30
Campus: St Petersburg
Submission Type: New
Course Change Information (for course changes only): Needs to be removed as a special topics course and made into a permanent course
Comments: USF-SP approved 4/29/13. To USF Sys 5/23/13. To SCNS 5/31/13. Approved effectrive 6/1/13

Detail Information

  1. Date & Time Submitted: 2012-10-09
  2. Department: Journalism and Media Studies
  3. College: AP
  4. Budget Account Number: STP 10000 511247 000000 0000000
  5. Contact Person: Deni Elliott
  6. Phone: 7278734881
  7. Email:
  8. Prefix: PGY
  9. Number: 5619
  10. Full Title: Photojournalism I
  11. Credit Hours: 3
  12. Section Type: C - Class Lecture (Primarily)
  13. Is the course title variable?: N
  14. Is a permit required for registration?: N
  15. Are the credit hours variable?: N
  16. Is this course repeatable?:
  17. If repeatable, how many times?: 0
  18. Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum): Photojournalism I
  19. Course Online?: C - Face-to-face (0% online)
  20. Percentage Online: 0
  21. Grading Option: -
  22. Prerequisites:
  23. Corequisites:
  24. Course Description: Today, all journalists must know how to tell stories with words, photos and audio. Through 10 still photo assignments, caption writing and a multimedia project with interview audio and natural sound, the craft of photojournalism will be emphasized.

  25. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course: Replacing Selected Topics with Permanent number; already listed in program
  26. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service? This is a practical course that helps students get good paying jobs in multiple industries where strategic information needs to be communicated to a mass audience through the use of multimedia.

    A similar course exists as a requirement for students completing the completely online Digital Journalism and Design M.A. Degree. This course is intended for students in the traditional M.A. in Journalism and Media Studies. Students will produce work through multiple media and platforms. The DJD course teaches only web-based skills, and is a one credit course.

  27. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times? Yes, 3 or more times
  28. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.) Industry experience is essential and more important than a doctorate as best practices cannot be learned and by extension taught from a book.
  29. Objectives: Academic competency: technology -- graded by your completion of 10 regular photo assignments

    • go beyond “auto” on a camera to select appropriate exposure settings for existing lighting

    • make f-stop choices on a lens appropriate for the desired depth-of-field in a composition

    • make shutter speed choices appropriate for the desired stop action in a composition

    • make focal length lens decisions appropriate for the subject and desired creative effect

    • use bounce and fill-flash to help augment existing lighting

    • use best practices techniques in photo editing software like Photoshop

    • identify strong photographs based on technical best practices and news value

    Academic competency: critical thinking -- graded by your completion of 10 regular photo assignments

    • ability to follow directions and react to changing environments and conditions while in the field photographing strangers, wildlife or landmarks

    • ability to tell a story with photography using a single image, a combination or series

    Academic competency: professional writing -- graded by your completion of five captions, as assigned

    • use best practices for writing compelling captions

    Other objectives

    • understand best practices for multimedia storytelling on the Web -- graded by your completion of the

    two deadlines associated with your Soundslides project along with the quality level of your images and audio

    • identify milestones in photojournalism history to better understand where the news industry has been so you can contribute to what is happening now and in the future; this includes diversity sensitivity of all flavors -- measured by a quiz that is included in your course participation point total

    • creation of a best practices portfolio that can be used for freelancing and to apply for internships, fellowships or jobs -- graded by the creation of a physical portfolio that can be used later for freelancing, and applying for internships, grants or jobs

  30. Learning Outcomes: Narratives with powerful photos get better placement, additional space or time, and are more memorable for the audience. Photos also enhance the breadth and depth of the communication process. Through a mix of lecture, discussion, readings, experiences and hands-on learning, students will be given the opportunity to become proficient in the craft of news photography which includes writing compelling captions. All skills and knowledge learned in this course are transferable into the workplace.
  31. Major Topics: • industry best practices

    • technical proficiency with a digital camera work flow

    • composition using the guideline of thirds, Golden Ratio and other classic techniques

    • exposure using the Zone System

    • critiquing images following industry best practices

    • the history of photojournalism

    • post-production photo editing using Photoshop and guidelines from the National Press Photographers Association

    • pre-production planning techniques: interviewing and research, storyboarding and shot lists

    • audio: natural sound; interviewing; mixing with Audacity

    • titles, credits and lower thirds

    • finishing photos for presentation

    • creating a portfolio for freelancing, and applying for internships, grants or jobs

  32. Textbooks:
  33. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases: • Home Depot on 22nd Ave. N., St. Pete, just west of the I-275 viaduct; Custom Framing Department: budget-priced hinged & cut photo mattes; this is where I suggest you purchase the one I require for this course; call for hours of operation; Specs: Nielson & Bainbridge, #89 (or similar), black paper matte board, 11 X 14 outer

    dimension with a 7-7/8 X 9-7/8 centered opening, cut on a bevel; backed with white foam core and hinged as a vertical mount; approx. cost = $6.25 + sales tax

    • Zebra Color pro photo lab in St. Petersburg: These folks do fantastic work -- I’ve been using them for years for film souping, standard sized prints and BIG enlargements from either film or digital; 1763 1st Ave. No., St. Pete (entrance on 18th street, nearly under the viaduct); Here’s their price list:

    The owners will give you personal service: Bruce Taylor or Kelly Van Kesteren-Taylor

    • Pearl Art Supplies They have FANTASTIC photo print portfolios, 24 pages/48 prints, budget-priced!

    SKU#: 945156 size: 8.5 x 11 Evolution Portfolio is about $6.64 plus shipping. Other sizes are available.

    • The Filter Connection has discounted prices, top brands :

    • Feisol tripods: budget carbon fiber, light, great travel sticks:

    • North Tampa Photography store for new gear and a place to compare models:

    • B&H Photo in NYC has great service, new and used gear, and academic pricing on some items; main Web site: EDU Web site:

    I’m the reason why USFSP is approved for their EDU pricing, so take a look and save!

    • KEH Camera Brokers in Georgia has great service and prices on used gear, buy here rather than from e-bay or Craig’s list: -- Note: I do not buy camera gear I intend to use on e-bay or Craig’s list.

    • NPPA - National Press Photographers Association has wonderful resources for student and professional

    photojournalists: They have student membership pricing and a mentoring program. Check them out!

    • CNET for objective electronics reviews and competitive online price shopping:

    • more sites for useful camera and related gear reviews:

    Popular Photography magazine:

    VERY cool!

    FREE tutorials via video:


    FINISHED IMAGES required for this course for each of the 10 regular assignments must be submitted in two ways:

    1. electronic form -- unedited AND edited, submitted via e-mail Note: Each file must include your name, the assignment number and, if needed, the image

    number. Three examples:

    dpwolfe_assignment1_edited.jpg dpwolfe_assignment1_unedited.jpg


    2. printed form (8X 10 image size, or smaller) in full color on photo-quality paper, submitted at the

    beginning of class on deadline day; for the critique session, your print must be in a hinged, black,

    matboard frame (approximately $5). You will only need one hinged frame for the entire course. You will either be printing each of your photo assignments yourself or through

    a processing lab.

    Though the campus library has digital cameras you may borrow for this course, they are old and often not in good repair. It is suggested that you borrow or purchase a digital camera for this course that has the ability to shoot in at least the following exposure modes: manual, aperture priority, shutter priority. A digital SLR that has interchangeable lenses and can also captures high definition video at 1080p at 30 frames per second will be a good career investment. Canon is the industry leader in this category.

    You will need five DVD-R blanks and a 32GB thumb drive.

    Access to Adobe Photoshop CS4 or higher, Adobe Elements, or the department's Mac Lab based on the schedule of open lab availability.

  34. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy: • 10 regular photo assignments: 50%

    • progress draft for the semester Soundslides project: 10%

    • graduate component -- an in-depth audio interview with a professional photojournalist: 10%

    • finished Soundslides project: 10%

    • portfolio of all 10 regular photo assignments, captions, reshoots and any extra credit: 10%

    • class attendance, participation and history quiz: 10%

  35. Assignments, Exams and Tests: 10 regular photo assignments:

    1) routine mug (headshot) of a human -- use a lens focal length of short telephoto; include just the head and shoulders along with both eyes

    2) overview / wide shot -- use a lens focal length of wide angle; this image will be a stand-alone FEATURE that can run without a narrative story; I will provide you with the general subject and it will be up to you to narrow it down to a topic

    3) close-up portrait -- use a lens focal length of wide to short telephoto; include a human face or part of a face; portray emotion or some aspect of personality, a prop that relates to your subject may be included

    4) landscape with a foreground object -- use an f-stop of 5.6 or greater; establish depth with how you compose the image

    5) a stand-alone WEATHER shot -- choose a depth of field appropriate to your composition

    6) stop-action -- use a shutter speed that illustrates your understanding of freezing the action; this image will be a stand-alone competitive SPORT shot; include the face of at least one player and the ball or an iconic part of the sport (i.e. cycle race = handle bars or wheel; badmitton = birdie)

    7) panning or sequence -- for panning, use a tri-pod or other steadying device and a shutter speed that illustrates your understanding of stop-action with the background captured as a blur; for the sequence, show a progression of motion or expression between 2-3 shots: beginning/end or beginning/middle/end

    8) posed group -- include seven or more people; the photo should clearly illustrate how they are connected

    9) fill-flash -- illustrate your understanding of exposure using available light and fill-flash to pleasingly illuminate a human face along with a portion of the subject’s environment

    10) environmental portrait -- this image will be a stand-alone FEATURE shot that emphasizes one human in an environment that shows an important aspect of their personality -- every pixel included in the composition will contribute to the audiences’ understanding of the subject

  36. Attendance Policy: Course Attendance at First Class Meeting – Policy for Graduate Students: For structured courses, 6000 and above, the College/Campus Dean will set the first-day class attendance requirement. Check with the College for specific information. This policy is not applicable to courses in the following categories: Educational Outreach, Open University (TV), FEEDS Program, Community Experiential Learning (CEL), Cooperative Education Training, and courses that do not have regularly scheduled meeting days/times (such as, directed reading/research or study, individual research, thesis, dissertation, internship, practica, etc.). Students are responsible for dropping undesired courses in these categories by the 5th day of classes to avoid fee liability and academic penalty. (See USF Regulation – Registration - 4.0101,

    Attendance Policy for the Observance of Religious Days by Students: In accordance with Sections 1006.53 and 1001.74(10)(g) Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6C-6.0115, the University of South Florida (University/USF) has established the following policy regarding religious observances: (

    In the event of an emergency, it may be necessary for USF to suspend normal operations. During this time, USF may opt to continue delivery of instruction through methods that include but are not limited to: Blackboard, Elluminate, Skype, and email messaging and/or an alternate schedule. It’s the responsibility of the student to monitor Blackboard site for each class for course specific communication, and the main USF, College, and department websites, emails, and MoBull messages for important general information.

  37. Policy on Make-up Work: Make-up work will be allowed only in cases where official documentation of inability to complete work on time is available (from a doctor, lawyer, etc.). Students who are allowed make-up work are still held accountable for adhering to the USF Policy on Academic Integrity (
  38. Program This Course Supports: Journalism and Media Studies
  39. Course Concurrence Information: Any major that requires students to tell multimedia stories to a mass audience either through print or Web platforms.

- if you have questions about any of these fields, please contact or