Master of Arts in Journalism

Graduate students in the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism can develop individualized degree plans to achieve professional career goals in news, strategic communications and other areas of personal interest.

Mayborn offers the only nationally accredited professional master's program in Texas.

NOTE: We no longer accept new Master of Journalism applications.

View portfolio requirements for the Master of Arts in Journalism degree.
Get information on graduate programs at the Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism.

Degree Requirements

Both the Master of Arts in Journalism program and the Master of Journalism program at the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism require the completion of a minimum of 36 semester hours. A 6-hour thesis is required for the M.A. degree, but is optional for the M.J. degree. Additionally, the M.A. degree requires 6 undergraduate credit hours of a foreign language (other than English).

Applicants whose undergraduate degree is not in journalism may be required to take up to 12 hours of undergraduate courses in journalism as approved by the graduate program director.

Prerequisite Courses (Up to 6 Hours)

Prerequisite courses may be required for students without a degree in Journalism, or as recommended by the admission review committee.
  • JOUR 2310 - Introduction to Media Writing
  • JOUR 3321 - News Reporting and Writing OR JOUR 3323 - News Writing for Broadcast and Web

Core Courses (12 Hours)

Core coursework includes the examination of the social, political, economic, technological, legal and historical aspects of mass communication. Students will also learn to use the tools and techniques of social science research, such as statistical analysis, survey research, content analysis and experimental studies.
  • JOUR 5040 - Media Studies and Theories
  • JOUR 5310 - Media Ethics
  • JOUR 5250 - Quantitative Research
  • JOUR 5260 - Qualitative Research

Optional Thesis Courses (6 Hours)

A thesis is optional for students in the M.A. track. Students completing a thesis should meet with his or her advisor after completing 12 hours to select a thesis chair and committee. You can look at a list of past Mayborn theses and search for a thesis that interests you by going to the UNT Digital Library's collection of theses and dissertations and entering the author's name or the title of the thesis to locate it.

Remaining Courses (18-24 hours)

With their approval of their graduate academic advisor, students may select their remaining coursework to support individual career interests. Course descriptions are available in the Graduate Catalog.


To benefit part-time and commuting students who work days, the school offers most graduate classes in the late afternoons and evenings during the fall and spring semesters. Workshop classes are offered for academic credit in strategic Dallas-Fort Worth locations, such as the Universities Center at Dallas. Some courses are web-based for added convenience.


Explore the impact of new technology on the mass media. Analyze new technologies from the professional perspectives of working journalists and cultural critics who see not only a technology's utility, but also its impact on society, its workers and its media content.

Study international mass communication media throughout the world, with special attention to press and broadcast systems, the sources and flow of international news, and problems of world communication.
Gain the leadership and media management skills needed to run newspapers, magazines, broadcast studios, online publications, public relations organizations and advertising firms. Explore the economic problems in media development and cultivate the critical thinking and reasoning skills necessary to make informed and ethical judgements.

Study the principles, practices and ethics of reporting and writing news for both traditional and new media. Study the business of newspaper publishing and magazine production, including photography, editing, advertising and design. Study photojournalism, visual communication, copyright law and applied uses of multimedia for digital media and the web.

Prepare for a career in journalism education. Receive practical experience writing headlines and editing copy for print and online news media. Learn advanced reporting techniques such as how to get difficult-to-obtain information from government and private sources.

Learn how to use freedom of information laws and mine online public records databases to discover facts about the institutions, public figures and other entities that affect our daily lives.

Learn advanced writing, editing and publishing practices used to create book-length manuscripts and other forms of literary nonfiction for newspapers, magazines and web-based publications.

Participate in the Archer City Writers Workshop and Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference.


Study how to use public relations tools to meet the needs of for-profit and non-profit organizations. Investigate the role of public opinion and examine how the social constructions of ethnicity and gender are involved in the production, distribution and consumption of the mass media in the United States.

Create comprehensive integrated communications plans that includes advertising, direct response, public relations and promotions, with an emphasis on using new technologies. Design production schedules, advertising and marketing promotions.


Professional internship opportunities provide practical experience in the areas of advertising, news-editorial, photojournalism and public relations through an arranged internship under the instruction and supervision of a professor and a designated professional in the field.

UNT is located in the fifth largest media market in the country, which provides access to numerous outstanding internship opportunities. You can gain experience at advertising and public relations agencies throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth region.

Broadcasting internships are available from area network, independent and cable stations, radio stations and websites. News and photo students can intern with magazines, newspapers, book publishers and their websites.


Marketable skills for this degree include interpersonal, cognitive, and applied skill areas, that are valued by employers, and are primary or complementary to the major. The marketable skills goal was designed to help students articulate their skills to employers. UNT's marketable skills were faculty-developed and approved by employers or discipline-specific agencies, e.g., internship providers, chambers of commerce, workforce development boards, and other workforce-related entities. For information on these marketable skills -


With their approval of their graduate academic advisor, students may select their remaining coursework to support individual career interests, such as the following: arts and entertainment; broadcast journalism; business journalism; general media studies; health, medicine, sciences and environmental journalism; international communications; internet, interactive and virtual digital communications; investigative journalism, media management and entrepreneurship; mass communication research; multicultural communications; narrative journalism; Ph.D. degree; public and civic journalism; public relations and advertising; race, gender, ethnicity and sexuality communications; sports journalism; and visual communications.