Technology is taking over the curriculum at too many j-schools and the results are "disastrous," accorinding to a well-known journalism educator and the author of the widely-used News Reporting and Writing, now in it's 12th edition.
Melvin Mencher says instruction in basic reporting and writing, journalism history and ethics is being squeezed by the growing number of tech-related courses, in a story published at About.com:Journalism.
"How you can have a curriculum that's limited to 30 hours and stuff it with things like how to make a video and or create a blog?" he says in a phone interview. "What the hell does that have to do with the basics of reporting?"
Mencher wonders why more journalism faculty don't resist the shift and suggests that too many of them have spent too much time earning PhDs and too little time in newsrooms.
A Ryerson journalism instructor is teaching his students how to be mobile journalists with a little help from Motorola and Telus.
Last year, Wayne MacPhail found the students in his class had a mix of different devices. This year, however, they will now be able to use the same devices to post audio, video, images and text to the web.
The University of Colorado at Boulder is planning to shut down its traditional journalism and mass communication programs.
In a statement on its website, the university says it wants to consider, instead, a new interdisciplinary academic program of information and communication technology and has set up an exploratory committee to help it do that.
It's easy enough to imagine downloading texts to read them on an iPad. But imagine being able to download single chapters, rather than full texts. Imagine interacting with the content through quizzes and other feature or highlighting text for others to see and sharing comments on passages with classmates.
Those are some of the things promised by a new textbook application for the iPad that some universities in the U.S. began using this week.
Jeremy Littau says he loves technology, but the evidence is building that student test scores improve in classes where laptops are banned. He is also concerned about what he calls "the halo effect."
"When a student has a laptop open, invariably the cone of people next to and behind that student get caught up watching as well. The movie playing or the Facebook page on the screen can be a huge distraction to both those students and to me."
He outlines his new "soft ban" on his blog. Other J-profs may find his thoughtful arguments and approach worth following.
edited by MARY McGUIRE
This section is designed to help teachers of journalism in Canada find and share ideas, curricula, approaches and resources that might help them as educators of the next generation of journalists in Canada. Mary McGuire is a former reporter and producer for CBC Radio News on Parliament Hill in Ottawa. She currently teaches journalism at Carleton University.
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