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Master's students standing in Medill's Chicago office which overlooks Navy Pier.

Master of Science in Journalism

Medill is home to one of the best and most prestigious graduate journalism programs in the world. Here you will learn enduring professional skills and values as well as new techniques and technologies you need to succeed in today’s fast-paced, digital media landscape. You also benefit from the reputation of Northwestern, a top-10 university. Medill’s Master of Science in Journalism degree is a STEM-designated program

Advance your career

Our Master of Science in Journalism (MSJ) degree is designed to give you the skills and training needed to help you launch and accelerate your career in journalism and media. At Medill, you also join a high-quality network of more than 18,000 alumni working in journalism, media, communications and other industries all over the world.

Quick Facts

Length 1 year starts in June and September. Location Chicago. Average Age 25. # Students 109.

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Specialize in a subject area or method

As a Medill journalism master’s student, you will select a specialization from a wide range of subject areas. In addition to strengthening your journalism skills in the full-time MSJ program, these specializations allow you to develop a deep expertise in a specific area that interests you.

Specialization options

Students listen to a presentation on a science-related topic.

Health, Environment and Science

Follow your passion for medicine, healthcare, science and the environment as you pursue stories anywhere in the world, from medical research labs to environmental hot spots.

Learn more about the Health, Environment and Science specialization
Students work together on a magazine assignment.


Learn how print and digital magazine content are assembled and published. Write, edit and conceptualize stories and gain an understanding of strong narrative storytelling.

Learn more about the Magazine specialization
MSJ students at the NUvention Trade show and prototype fair.

Media Innovation and Content Strategy

Combine your love of journalism with your entrepreneurial spirit and learn how to lead, launch or build digital media businesses.

Learn more about the Media Innovation and Content Strategy specialization
Student photographing a lake.

Medill Investigative Lab

Work side-by-side with veteran journalists on investigations of national importance. The investigative reporting skills you learn in this specialization will serve you well in your career no matter what area of journalism you pursue.

Learn more about the Medill Investigative Lab specialization
Students interview someone at a political rally.

Politics, Policy and Foreign Affairs

Learn to cover politics and the latest advances in national security, and work as a credentialed reporter in the nation’s capital.

Learn more about the Politics, Policy and Foreign Affairs specialization
MSJ student reads a historical document.

Social Justice

Use your journalism skills to shine light on injustice and inequality. Learn how to make a difference in the lives of those who are disenfranchised, vulnerable or oppressed.

Learn more about the Social Justice specialization
Three MSJ students sitting in the press box at a baseball game.

Sports Media

In the sports journalism specialization, go beyond game coverage by learning to tackle commentaries, profiles and analyses that sports fans love. Your training will take you onto the field and behind the scenes at sporting events.

Learn more about the Sports Media specialization
A student sits at a newsdesk while a camera films her; Navy Pier is in the background.

Video and Broadcast

Develop your skills in areas such as TV news, video storytelling and documentary. Use our state-of-the-art video production equipment and studios to hone your craft.

Learn more about the Video and Broadcast specialization

Report from different locations

MSJ student and faculty standing on the shore in the Pacific Northwest
Mariana Brady taking a selfie video in London

Medill Explores

Medill Explores are faculty-led learning adventures that include domestic or international travel.

Learn more about Medill Explores

Connect to a powerful alumni network

George RR Martin (BSJ70, MSJ71)

Headshot of George R.R. Martin.
Author of “A Song of Ice and Fire” novels

Martin's novels were adapted by HBO into the dramatic series “Game of Thrones.”

Meet more Medill alumni

Clara Jeffery (MSJ93)

Headshot of Clara Jeffery.
Mother Jones Magazine

Mother Jones was named 2017 Magazine of the Year by the American Society of Magazine Editors.

Meet more Medill alumni

Kelly McEvers (MSJ97)

Headshot of Kelly McEvers.
Current host of NPR's "Embedded" and former host of "All Things Considered"

Previously, McEvers was a correspondent covering the Middle East, including the Syrian conflict, for NPR.

Meet more Medill alumni

Learn from top journalists

Headshot of Beth Bennett.

Beth Bennett (MSJ97)

Professor and Associate Dean of Journalism
Bennett is an award-winning producer and reporter with more than 15 years of journalism experience in broadcast television news and video production. Her experience spans many areas of television news, including on-air reporting, studio/booth producing and field producing.

Headshot of Chris Benson.

Christopher Benson

Associate Professor
Benson joined Medill from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is a journalist, lawyer and former Johnson Publishing Company vice president. He co-authored a book with Emmett Till's mother about the teenager's life and brutal lynching and the changes that followed.

Headshot of J.A. Adande.

J.A. Adande (BSJ92)

Director of Sports Journalism and Associate Professor
Adande was a columnist for for nine years, covering the NBA and working as a sideline reporter for NBA games, and he served as a panelist for ESPN’s “Around the Horn.”

Medill Initiatives

Knight Lab

MSJ student in Knight Lab holding VR headsets.

Explore how technology changes the way we report, consume and share news and information. Work with a team to develop new technology tools for journalists.

Learn about the Knight Lab

Medill Local News Initiative

People work together around a table.

Learn about research conducted at Medill regarding the local news crisis and new business models that are being developed to support this important part of democracy.

Learn about the Medill Local News Initiative

Train with Medill from Coast to Coast


Chicago skyline at sunset.

Take classes at our space in downtown Chicago, located in the Loop among top media companies and with easy access to journalists, many of whom are Medill alumni.

Washington, D.C.

MSJ student reporting in Washington, D.C., with the Supreme Court building in the background.

Spend a quarter or more as a credentialed journalist in Washington, D.C., reporting on Congress, the White House and politics.

San Francisco

Aerial shot of students collaborating on a project at the San Francisco classroom location.

Study design and examine the intersection of technology, data and innovation at our San Francisco campus, right in the middle of the Bay Area’s entrepreneurial culture.  

Start your Medill journey

A group of MSJ students pose for a photo

Application Deadlines

The admissions application to start in summer or fall 2022 is open.

Visit our application requirements page to learn about the items that are needed when you apply.

Application for 2023 opens in August.Click here for informationx