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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Centre for Open Learning : Creative Arts

Undergraduate Course: Introduction to Photojournalism (LLLA07264)

Course Outline
SchoolCentre for Open Learning CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 7 (Year 1 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThis digital photojournalism course will introduce you to the skills, techniques and approaches needed to make eye-catching images, which tell journalistic stories through photographs. You will be introduced to historical and contemporary approaches to the photo essay, shown in magazines and news outlets. Gain an understanding of the ethical issues and learn camera and reportage skills to create your own photojournalism assignments.

Please note: During some of the classes you will be working on location around Edinburgh's Old and New towns. Location visits will be between 1 to 2 hours.
Course description 1) Academic Description
Introduction to Photojournalism will guide students into the specific genre of photojournalism and its approach to photography. Students will be introduced to a range of contemporary and historical photojournalists and consider trends and styles. The teaching approach will be supportive and informal, backed up by expert knowledge, anecdotes and experience.

The structure of this course is based around class-based lectures and exercises with supported workshops on location. Students will work to given project briefs and be supported to develop those projects through to presenting a finalised body of photographs. There will be demonstrations and introductions to the relevant post-production techniques using Adobe Photoshop, along with exercises which enable students to develop their skills in camera techniques, lighting and capturing 'decisive moments'.

Students will experience the practical elements of photojournalism as well as learning the context and meaning of images. We will look at how to tell a story with a single image and within a series.

2) Outline Content
Students will, throughout the duration of this course, gain competency in photojournalism styles and approaches as well as image selection. Supported through in-class exercises, these will include:
- Introduction to photojournalism and the camera.
- Introduction to basic camera controls.
- Introduction to historical and contemporary practice.
- Develop an understanding of working to newsroom deadlines for headlines.
- Explore how to 'build a story'.
- Explore the application of photojournalism through the media
- Explore the law and ethical issues surrounding photojournalism.
- Exhibition visit or book reviews.
- Develop a personal project, researching a story through to a presentation of work.
- Explore how to share your work in appropriate formats.
- Post-production - Editing and image selection using Adobe Photoshop.
- Peer support and tutorials.

3) Student Learning Experience

Students will be taught as a group, taking them through the various stages of creating a photojournalism project with tutor supporting in class and on location. Photographs will be made on location either within the class and/or, as a directed study exercise, and digitally processed in a Mac computer lab equipped with Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Bridge.
The exercises will give students the opportunity to learn about various factors of the camera and refine their ability to confidently capture images in a variety of situations and scenarios. Group discussions and class critiques, led by the tutor and based on the student's projects will be supported by contextualising their ideas with photojournalists work to inspire, but also challenge student viewpoints. This will allow students to see how their own photography fits into a larger historical context.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate contextual awareness and critical thinking to support and explore a range of photographic vocabularies to communicate a visual narrative.
  2. Demonstrate an enquiring approach to using a range of camera and post-production techniques to develop a personal body of work.
  3. Show appropriate judgement to select, edit, print and present a coherent, digitally-based photojournalism body of work.
Reading List
Berger, J. and Berger, J. 1973. Ways of seeing; a book made by John Berger. New York: Viking Press.
Bolt, R. 2018. World Press Photo 2018 Thames and Hudson Ltd.
Collectif 2019. World Press Photo 2019 Thames and Hudson Ltd.
Halsman, P. and Lubben, K. 2011. Magnum contact sheets. London: Thames & Hudson.
Hurn, D. and Jay, B. 2009. On being a photographer. Anacortes, WA: LensWork
Sontag, S. 2004. Regarding the pain of others. Penguin.

Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills - Knowledge about and use of a range of camera functions and techniques.
- Ability to make basic use of Photoshop for post-production.
- Ability to employ a methodology in telling a story through the medium of photography.
- Ability to undertake research and reflective practice and apply these in the photojournalistic context.
Course organiserMr Robbie Bushe
Course secretaryMs Kameliya Skerleva
Tel: (0131 6)51 1855
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