Media Law and Ethics
3 Credit Hours

This course examines issues related to freedom of speech, analyzing the rights, responsibilities, and restrictions defined by the 1st Amendment. Using the media as a framework for discussion, students will explore the changing definition of the term "journalist" while examining the constitutional, statutory, and judicial imperatives giving reporters favored status in the United States. Emphasis will be placed on understanding the evolution of the nation's court system and government's interest in restraining access or censoring information before publication. Using a case study approach, students will discuss current developments in libel, restrictions on access to public documents, censorship, privacy, and copyright infringement. The course will also explore social media law as it pertains to blogs, linking stories, and copyright. This course helps students build confidence in their communication and writing skills while also enabling them to think critically, consider the viewpoints of others, and effectively express themselves, all of which will benefit them in the classroom, in life, and in the workforce.