The nation’s first school of journalism continues to evolve with the rapidly changing journalism and strategic communication industry. The University of Missouri School of Journalism is now offering an online graduate certificate in interactive media — 100 percent online.

The online graduate certificate in interactive media is designed for journalism and communications professionals looking to gain experiential skills necessary to enhance their current roles or start a new position. Course work covers digital strategy, online audience development, emerging technologies in journalism and more.

“With constant change in the industry, communicators need to know how to apply technology and analytics to our work,” said Earnest Perry, associate dean for graduate studies at the School of Journalism. “This certificate’s course work applies to professionals at all levels and in all areas of communication — from magazine editors to search marketing strategists.” 

Learning by doing

The Missouri School of Journalism is known for the “Missouri Method” of learning by doing. This allows students to have real-world, hands-on experiences that lead to new or different careers.

The 15-credit-hour online graduate certificate in interactive media will apply this same approach. 

“These students will be able to apply all of the course work to their careers,” said Jim Flink, assistant professor in the School of Journalism. “Interactive media is essentially a part of every communication professional’s job description today. We want our grads to have a leg up on the competition in their field so they can be a top candidate — or move up within their own organization.” 

Pathway to master’s

MU already has successful online master’s programs in four different areas of journalism — interactive media, health communication, media management and strategic communication.

Now in its 17th year, the online MA program was one of the first online graduate programs in journalism in the world. Mizzou’s online journalism students come to the program from everywhere, including newsrooms, broadcast stations, the armed forces and advertising firms. Alumni include many industry executives, innovators, esteemed educators and award winners.

For students who are interested in furthering their education, but not ready to commit to a master’s program, the graduate certificate is a way to get started. Students who complete the interactive media graduate certificate with a 3.5 GPA or higher will not be required to take the GRE to apply to one of the journalism master’s programs.

Looking ahead

With the journalism and communication industries continuing to evolve, the need for innovative professionals grows.

“The School of Journalism’s focus on hands-on learning is what sets their courses apart from other institutions,” said Kim Siegenthaler, director of Mizzou Online. “Our goal is to provide access to students everywhere who want to improve their careers but can’t relocate to attend Mizzou’s world-famous journalism school.”

Take the next step

Looking for an online program with real-world experience? The school is currently accepting applications for the summer 2019 semester.

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