Crafting Truth: Documentaries for Radio

Spring 2018
Credits per quarter

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How do stories about social problems and social change help us understand the world we live in, and how can audio documentaries, features, and news stories contribute to this understanding?  In Crafting Truth students will learn to analyze and create audio pieces that reflect on social problems and the ideas, actors, and actions that contribute to social change. 

Technological advances in recording and podcasting have fostered a renaissance in the production of creative audio stories.  Our exploration of documentaries will include innovative radio shows and podcasts, as well as traditional radio news documentaries.  Class readings will introduce students to the history, ethics, and aesthetics of audio documentary and news feature stories.  We will explore the unique characteristics, constraints, and impacts of documentary work by studying other people’s productions and reflecting on our own work.

This program is designed as an introduction to media production: no previous media experience or personal equipment is required.  Students will learn basic skills involved in planning, recording, interviewing, scripting, narrating, and editing audio works.  Students entering the program with more advanced skills will be expected to expand those skills through additional independent reading and through engagement in more technically or conceptually complex projects. Projects will include documentary work featuring individual or collective contributions to regional and/or global social change efforts, and short news stories highlighting city or state public-policy issues. Students will receive some training toward on-air certification at KAOS Community Radio, and they may have the option of airing their work on the radio or in other public forums.  This program fulfills requirements for selected MIT communication endorsements.

This offering will prepare you for careers and advanced study in: radio production, media production, media arts, public advocacy, and journalism.

Online learning:
  • Enhanced Online Learning - This offering requires access to web-based tools, but use of these tools does not displace any face-to-face instruction.

Scheduled for: Day

Located in: Olympia

Final schedule and room assignment:


Advertised schedule:

Monday 10-12:00; 1:00-3:00;  Wednesday 10-1:00 Thursday 10-12; 1-4:30 

2018-02-13This program is offered for 16-credits (partial credit option removed).
2018-01-30Title, Description, Credit Options, and Schedule Updated
2018-01-29Laurie Meeker has left the teaching team.