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Release: Immediate

UI journalism course to be offered over Iowa Communications Network

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Do the media share blame in the death of Princess Diana? Do the media cover sex, gossip and crime too much, as witnessed by saturation coverage of sportcaster Marv Albert, Paula Jones, and JonBenet Ramsey?

Was press coverage of the McCaughey Septuplets slanted?

These and scores of other contemporary media issues will be addressed in an innovative University of Iowa School of Journalism and Mass Communication course to be offered next semester throughout the state via the Iowa Communications Network (ICN). The course, entitled "News-Editorial Problems," will examine editorial, financial and ethical issues that affect the newspaper profession.

"The course is about real-world issues that journalists confront on a regular basis," says Stephen G. Bloom, UI associate professor of journalism and a former newspaper reporter for the Los Angeles Times, Dallas Morning News, and Sacramento Bee. Issues to be covered include ethics and press responsibility, what makes news, newspaper graphics, hometown boosterism, customs and practices of journalists, newsroom politics, and the newspaper of tomorrow.

Each class begins with a lively critique of that day's national, state and regional newspapers. Students enrolled in the class over the ICN are especially encouraged to participate in the interactive session. During several sessions, students will interview editors of Iowa newspapers about editorial decisions that affected news coverage in that day's newspapers.

The statewide course will be offered Mondays from 6-9 p.m., Jan. 26 -May 11 through 17 ICN sites around the state. ICN transmission will allow those enrolled in virtually any part of the state to participate in this interactive weekly class. Course locations include: Ankeny, Bettendorf, Clear Lake, Corning, Council Bluffs, Des Moines, Edgewood-Colesburg, Emmetsburg, Fort Dodge, Marion, Marshalltown, Ottumwa, Sheldon, Sioux City, Waterloo and West Burlington.

Depending on demand, the UI Off-Campus Courses and Programs Office may schedule additional locations, more conveniently located to prospective students.

Those who enroll may elect to take the course for three semester hours of undergraduate or graduate credit at the UI. The deadline for registration is Monday, Jan. 12, 1998.

For more information about enrolling in the course, contact the UI Off-Campus Courses & Programs Office at 1-800-272-6430.