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Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
Rethinking Journalism Education
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Rethinking Journalism Education

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Presentation given at the Future of Journalism conference in Cardiff, Wales on Sept. 9/10, 2009

Presentation given at the Future of Journalism conference in Cardiff, Wales on Sept. 9/10, 2009

Published in: Education, News & Politics
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  • 1. Rethinking Journalism Education [again] <ul><li>The Future of Journalism </li></ul><ul><li>Cardiff University, Wales </li></ul><ul><li>September 2009 </li></ul><ul><li>Donica Mensing University of Nevada, Reno </li></ul>
  • 2. Presentation <ul><li>Arguments for change </li></ul><ul><li>One proposal for change </li></ul><ul><li>Recent examples </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusion </li></ul>
  • 3. Basis <ul><li>Dewey, Carey, Rosen, Reese, Zelizer … </li></ul><ul><li>Teaching and researching online journalism for 10 years </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborating in developing a new graduate program </li></ul><ul><li>Reflecting on recent examples </li></ul>
  • 4. Historic Model Newspapers ____________ Radio and TV stations Magazines Web sites Journalism Schools Educators __________ Students
  • 5. Industry-centered journalism education <ul><ul><ul><li>Professionalism </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Reporting </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> Socialization </li></ul></ul></ul>
  • 6. 1. Professionalism <ul><li>In 1903 Joseph Pulitzer donated $2 million to Columbia University for a school that would </li></ul><ul><li>“ emphasize the professional significance of journalism” </li></ul><ul><li>and exclude courses related to advertising, circulation and newspaper management. </li></ul>
  • 7. 1. Professionalism (now) <ul><li>In 2005 the Carnegie Corporation and Knight Foundation pledged $11 million to revitalize journalism education and produce students who are: </li></ul><ul><li>“ well-trained, well-educated, honest, trustworthy, curious, intelligent people” who will devote their lives to their profession (Carnegie, 2005). </li></ul>
  • 8. Implications <ul><li>Assumes that reformation of journalism depends on individual journalists rather than structural or institutional change </li></ul><ul><li>Ignores contradictions between professionalism and commercialism, between ideals and practices </li></ul><ul><li>Implies a barrier between journalists and citizens </li></ul>
  • 9. 2. Reporting <ul><ul><li>“ The reporter” is the idealized form of journalist targeted in j-schools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>News gathering is the core skill required of nearly all journalism majors regardless of sequence </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Assessment and success is measured by producing students with skills to succeed in industrial news production </li></ul></ul>
  • 10. Implications <ul><li>Assumes information scarcity is the primary problem to be solved </li></ul><ul><li>Assumes information is a commodity to be produced and transmitted to a waiting audience </li></ul><ul><li>Emphasizes independent news judgment, verification and objectivity as primary values </li></ul>
  • 11. 3. Newsroom socialization <ul><li>Many administrators come from industry and conceptualize journalism similarly </li></ul><ul><li>Many faculty teach ‘best practices’ from the newsroom </li></ul><ul><li>Most students are required to do internships in industry and are encouraged to participate in professional competitions </li></ul>
  • 12. Implications <ul><li>Reinforces existing practices rather than critical inquiry </li></ul><ul><li>Stresses mastery over innovation and experimentation </li></ul><ul><li>Creates a barrier between practitioners and scholars </li></ul>
  • 13. Journalism Education News Industry The Networked Public Geographic communities/ Communities of interest Proposed Model News Ecology
  • 14. 1. Professionalism <ul><li>Develop curriculum that stresses the values of citizenship and professionalism </li></ul><ul><li>Develop practices based on critical inquiry and public needs </li></ul><ul><li>Develop ethical criteria relevant in new contexts </li></ul>
  • 15. 2. Reporting <ul><li>Be more explicit about purpose </li></ul><ul><li>Educate for multiple journalistic roles: filtering, facilitating, moderating, programming, databases </li></ul><ul><li>Enlarge the definitions of story, news element, coverage, deadline </li></ul><ul><li>Reflect on, test and publicly evaluate experiments and experiences </li></ul>
  • 16. 3. Socialization <ul><li>Socialize students to working in communities (online and offline) </li></ul><ul><li>Teach students to value innovation, uncertainty, experimentation </li></ul><ul><li>Require sophisticated analysis and critical reflection about their own practices </li></ul>
  • 17. Initial examples <ul><li>OurTahoe.org (University of Nevada) </li></ul><ul><li>Nuestro Tahoe (University of Nevada) </li></ul><ul><li>Reno Noise (University of Nevada) </li></ul><ul><li>Albany Today (UC Berkeley) </li></ul><ul><li>NewsMixer (Northwestern) </li></ul>
  • 18. OurTahoe.org
  • 19. Nuestro Tahoe
  • 20. Reno Noise
  • 21. Albany Today
  • 22. NewsMixer
  • 23. Challenges <ul><li>Difficult to collaborate with disparate groups </li></ul><ul><li>Difficult for faculty to make community commitments </li></ul><ul><li>Students want to pursue individualized goals </li></ul><ul><li>Curriculum schedules inflexible and discontinuous </li></ul><ul><li>Innovation and experimentation often not rewarded in traditional academic evaluations </li></ul>
  • 24. Conclusion <ul><li>This is a critical moment in the evolution of journalism </li></ul><ul><li>Journalism educators can play a key role in experimenting, testing and developing new practices and conceptions of what journalism is and could be </li></ul><ul><li>This work requires that we rethink our own practices within the academy and make our purposes and obligations more explicit </li></ul>
  • 25. Feedback? <ul><li>Donica Mensing ( [email_address] ) @donica </li></ul><ul><li>http://studentdev.jour.unr.edu/jeducation </li></ul><ul><li>2009-2010 University of Tuscia, Viterbo, Italy </li></ul><ul><li>August 2010, University of Nevada, Reno, US </li></ul>

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