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The Philip Merrill College of Journalism offers a number of capstone experiences that give our undergraduate students focused, hands-on journalism experience. Completion of a capstone is a Merrill College graduation requirement.

To enroll in a capstone course, students must fill out the college’s common capstone application by Sunday, March 12 at 11:59 p.m.

In each capstone course, students work with faculty and classmates to produce original journalism that may be distributed through the college’s Capital News Service.

Merrill College administrators and capstone faculty will review applicants and inform students of their placement prior to the start of registration.

The following courses satisfy the capstone requirement. Please note that our offerings vary from semester to semester*:

  • JOUR325/625, JOUR655 or JOUR367/667: Full-time Capital News Service Bureau (9 credits for undergraduate students/6 credits for master's students). Students work four days a week in a Capital News Service bureau in Washington (reporting/writing), Annapolis (reporting/writing) or College Park (audience engagement and social media, broadcast, and data and graphics).
  • JOUR328F/628N: International Reporting on Imprisoned Journalists (3 credits). In this course, students will dip into national security and diplomatic reporting by learning to research the context, laws and international pressure surrounding an individual journalist imprisoned in a particular country. Students will learn how to find sources and conduct interviews with diplomats, experts, reporters and family members living overseas while never leaving College Park.
  • JOUR353 or JOUR355 or JOUR357: Part-time Capital News Service Bureau (6 credits). Students work two days a week in a Capital News Service bureau in Washington (reporting/writing), Annapolis (reporting/writing) or College Park (audience engagement and social media, investigative, broadcast, data and graphics, and data investigations).
  • JOUR362/662: Broadcast News Producing (3 credits). Students work as producers overseeing the Capital News Service’s newscast, “Maryland Newsline.”
  • JOUR364/664: Advanced Audio and Podcast Reporting (3 credits). Students will receive professional skills training in the reporting, writing, editing, voicing and production of radio news. Students will be required to do extensive out-of-class field reporting, along with writing and mixing broadcast-quality radio pieces.
  • JOUR368O/668O: Advanced Studio Production (3 credits). This course will take you through every production aspect related to studio production and work as production support for live sports or video game news shows.
  • JOUR389M/689M: The Future of Football (3 credits). In this course, we'll interview youth players and parents around the country to hear what football means in communities that are affluent and poor, urban and rural, predominantly white, Black and Hispanic.

*For more information on courses, visit the common capstone application.

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