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A New Editor & A Growing Journal

Brian Steffen

It’s with great pleasure that I inform you that the Fall 2014 edition of Teaching Journalism & Mass Communication is now live and ready for you to read.

As editor of the journal, there are so many people to thank for their help in putting together the first issue I’ve edited that I couldn’t possibly list them all. However, special thanks go to…

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A Happy Ending and Beginning: TJMC Gets a New Editor

Vivian B. Martin

I am in a lighthearted, optimistic mood as I sit down to write this, my last Editor’s Note, and not just because this experiment in open-source academic publishing that we launched in fall 2011 has survived small bumps along the way. Putting the journal into the capable hands of a successor fuels my elation, of course. But I also just returned from a panel of my program’s recent graduates, who discussed their jobs in print, TV and online newsrooms. In addition to giving students advice about working in campus media, being smart about internships, and even paying attention in class, they gave further encouragement. “There are jobs out there,” they assured the students, who have had their doubts.

The message of a future in journalism that is available for those who are willing to prepare was also welcome confirmation for faculty that we are getting students ready for the media world after graduation. As I think other JMC faculty can agree, such assurances are needed every now and then. Sitting at Open Houses where parents aggressively question the value of the degree we are there to promote, or coming across yet another listicle citing journalism as a worthless degree, or reading another screed about how journalism and mass communication educators are doing it wrong, can raise doubts in our own minds. When we are looking at the big picture, we know the students are building skills and mindsets that they will be able to take to many fields beyond journalism or public relations. Sometimes, as we are faced with assessment reports, calls for recruitment and retention plans, budget cutbacks just when we need to upgrade equipment to keep our programs up to date, or trying to launch some new partnership with industry or other venture that helps push us and our students into the future, the pieces to the puzzle don’t come together so smoothly.

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Service Learning in the JMC Curriculum

Michael Ray Smith

From the inner city of South China to the rural outposts of North Carolinas, the academy is taking classes to the streets with service learning projects that acquaint students with real-world problems and some insight in ways to provide solutions.

Last summer, editor Vivian Martin of Central Connecticut State University suggested the Small Programs Interest Group explore the topic in a special issue of its online journal. We liked it because we believe in it. In this edition of Teaching Journalism and Mass Communication, you’ll see service learning unpacked in many ways by your colleagues.

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Adapting to ‘Post-Industrial’ Journalism

Vivian B. Martin

Like many tasks these days, the writing of this Editor’s Note got sidetracked due to some of the time I spent poking around the Internet, especially following projects like the continually surprising data visualizations on the London riots at the Guardian’s data hub or taking Google Fusion Tables tutorials. I spend way too much time just playing oldies on Youtube, too, but for purposes of this Editor’s Note I just want to point to the more purposeful procrastination I do.

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Grounding Research, Theory, and Practice

Vivian B. Martin

Teaching Journalism and Mass Communication (TJMC) was started as a venue for writing and research about teaching journalism and mass communication in traditional and nontraditional ways. With this, our second issue, the journal is moving closer to what we had envisioned, one with essays integrating video and other multimedia to help demonstrate teaching and pedagogical ideas, as well as peer-reviewed research on topics related to the classroom, such as research on motivating students to read long-form works, twitter pedagogy, and an applied theoretical discussion on dialogic in public relations. The mix of offerings, though an exciting realization of some vague ideas we editors had more than a year ago, only inspires us to push forward with more possibilities for thinking about, and writing and researching scholarship on teaching and learning.

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A Note from the Editor (Fall 2011)

Vivian B. Martin

Welcome to the first issue of Teaching Journalism and Mass Communication: A Journal Published by the Small Programs Interest Group of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. Although the editorial team has crossed off a number of tasks on the to-do list on our way to this first issue, from recruiting writers to wrestling with the technical details of electronic publication, writing this inaugural letter seems to me to be one of the most difficult tasks to date. I have procrastinated mightily and can’t really blame my teaching load or even the recent October snowstorm that knocked out power for nearly a week. I think my footdragging has something to do with the challenge of stepping up and succinctly describing the vision the editorial team, SPIG officers, and I have for the publication, while also acknowledging and hoping this creation grows beyond our initial goals for it. Moreover, part of the challenge is to explain what we tried to do with this first issue, at the same time hoping that the work speaks for itself […]

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