Politics, Policy, and the News Media

The program will consider "media" broadly, encapsulating both "traditional" print, TV, and other sources as well as "new media" and other forms of social media communication. We will also consider the perspectives of other professionals in policy related careers-elected officials and their staffs, political consultants, lobbyists, and more who interact with the media on a daily basis and make regular use of social media to communicate their messages directly. Students will leave the program with a better understanding of how the worlds of media and public policy intersect, and will develop an understanding of the psychology of persuasion and communication that are applicable to a wide variety of career choices.

This theme will take advantage of the unique resources at the nexus of media, public policy, and politics in Washington DC. Though classroom discussions, internships, guest speakers, field trips, and networking events with Bucknell alumni employed in media- and policy-related fields, students will be able to further their academic and professional interests in a number of different settings only available in the nation's capital. 

Required Courses

The program will be comprised of the following four required courses. Three courses will be taken at our host school, American University, and the internship will be based in various locations across the city. Two courses (Media and Politics and Political Communication and Marketing) will be taught by Bucknell professor, Chris Ellis, one course will be an internship, and one course will be an elective through American University.

Media and Politics (1 credit)

This course explores the role of the news media in American politics. The course will examine relationship between elected officials and the media, campaign advertising and media coverage of elections, and the role of the media in shaping public opinion and public policy.

Political Communication and Marketing (1 credit)

This course focuses on the psychology of political and social marketing and communication. We will explore what we know about how people form and express opinions in order to discussion concepts such as the psychology of persuasion, the role of emotion in political messaging, and the effectiveness (and limits to the effectiveness) of political advertising. Students will learn how to better understand and critically evaluate political communication and messaging strategies, and develop a better understanding human decision making in political and other realms.

Internship – American University (1 credit)

American University will work with you before and during the semester to find an internship placement that works for you. You will spend time during the week working on projects at your placement and will be given credit through a course at American University.

American University Elective (1 credit)

American University will offer students a variety of elective courses across various academic fields. Students will select a single American University course to complete their full course load.

Information Sessions

Thursday, Aug. 25, 2016
5 - 6 p.m. (211 Academic West Bldg.)

Monday, Aug. 29, 2016
5 - 6 p.m. (211 Academic West Bldg.)

Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2016
5 - 6 p.m. (211 Academic West Bldg.)


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