Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2024
Units: 0
Hours: 3 lecture, 3 laboratory per week (72 total per quarter)
Advisory: PHOT 5 or 405 or equivalent experience.
Degree & Credit Status: Non-Degree-Applicable Non-Credit Course
Foothill GE: Non-GE
Transferable: None
Grade Type: Non-Credit Course (Receives no Grade)
Repeatability: Unlimited Repeatability

Student Learning Outcomes

  • A successful student will create photographs using knowledge of photographic capture techniques and effective editing skills.
  • A successful student will identify proper and improper photojournalist behaviors and ethics.


Instruction in basic skills needed for effective online and print photography for use in newspapers, magazines, web journals, and blogs, with emphasis on developing appropriate behavior and craft needed in meeting deadlines for photojournal publication. Assignments include news photographs, human interest and feature pictures, and the picture story. Special emphasis on print quality, picture editing, layout design, image content, and captioning. Introduction to digital capture, preparation of files and transmittal of photographs, and video and sound recording techniques.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate the ability to photograph in various circumstances, develop and print negatives, produce digital files suitable for printing, transmission and archival purposes, and produce photographs of acceptable quality for reproduction
  2. Make human interest and feature photos, as well as routine interview and environmental portraits
  3. Photograph subject matter which is news worthy
  4. Photograph people in candid situations, such as in action photographs
  5. Distinguish between a photo essay and picture story
  6. Gather information on assignment adequate to provide data for picture captions and story line
  7. Work with photo editors in evaluating contact sheets and planning picture layouts
  8. Complete photographic assignments that meet strict deadline requirements
  9. Demonstrate sensitivity to issues involving cultural differences in the acquisition and dissemination of journalistic photography

Course Content

  1. History of photojournalism
    1. Nineteenth century processes: steel line engraving, Woodburytype, gravure
    2. The halftone process
    3. Harper's Review, Life magazine, New York Times, National Enquirer, others
    4. Electronic image capture and transmittal
  2. Major figures in photojournalism
    1. Eugene Smith, Robert Capa, Margaret Bourke-White, Gilles Peress, Sebastiao Salgado, Dirck Halstead, Susan Meiselas, William Albert Allard, Eugene Richards, Mary Ellen Mark, others
    2. How photographers from diverse cultures and backgrounds have contributed to the rich heritage of photojournalism
  3. Principles of photojournalism
    1. The nature of the documentary photograph
    2. Ethics of photojournalistic photography
    3. Photojournalism and the law
    4. Ramifications of digital image manipulation and copyright issues
  4. Survey of photojournalism assignments
    1. News photos
    2. Human interest pictures and feature photographs
    3. The picture story and the photo essay
  5. Technical aspects of photojournalism
    1. Data gathering to accompany photographs
    2. Photographic techniques for flash and available light photography
    3. Print quality necessary for offset and laser reproduction
    4. The digital camera
  6. Production aspects of photojournalism
    1. Presenting photographs for publication to a newspaper or magazine
    2. Picture editing, sequencing, and layout
    3. Working with photo editors
    4. Field trips to newspaper offices and other sites as appropriate

Lab Content

  1. Use of computer workstation and Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, and/or Photo Mechanic imaging software
  2. Use of print kiosks and professional color laboratory services
  3. Field trips to newsroom or to shadow a photojournalist
  4. Interview a professional in the field
  5. Use of basic sound and video techniques to produce short clips

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

1. Lecture room equipped for slide and digital media projection with wall space for posting prints for evaluation.
2. Laboratory equipped for printing black and white negatives and workstation access for preparation of digital files.
3. Photographic equipment and chemicals necessary for printing.
4. Access to computer hardware and software, basic video and sound equipment for demonstrations and use.
5. When taught via Foothill Global Access, on-going access to computer with email and image management software, e.g., Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom, Photo Mechanic software; digital camera and associated hardware; email address.

Method(s) of Evaluation

Methods of Evaluation may include but are not limited to the following:

The student's progress will be evaluated by a portfolio resulting from completion of assignments
Laboratory assignments will also be evaluated on the basis of picture interest, quality of presentation, technical quality, and adherence to deadlines
A written paper

Method(s) of Instruction

Methods of Instruction may include but are not limited to the following:

Lecture presentations on the techniques and history of photojournalism, documentary photography, and concerned photography
Classroom discussion and electronic discussions/chat, as appropriate, demonstrating skill critique and comparison of different photographic images and techniques
Field trips to visit photographic, artistic, and technical locations
Demonstrations on how to work with various photographic equipment, including editing and sound software on the computer

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Bogre, Michelle. Documentary Photography Reconsidered History, Theory and Practice. 2019.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

  1. Compose titles and captions to accompany photographs
  2. Short text reports to accompany picture/video/sound story
  3. A written paper that discusses the life and work of a photojournalist
  4. Maintain a blog that documents reflections on picture story progress