Don’t reinvent the wheel – a scan of Journalism literature relating to faculty

My professor had a great point the other week when I was struggling on how to formulate the research question for my thesis — don’t reinvent the wheel. So, the elephant is going to go down in small bites, the first of which late last week involved a good couple of hours mining the databases for what’s ‘new’ in journalism (and particularly journalism education).

On the education side, I didn’t find much, but did stumble into a huge thread of literature in education that focuses upon the experience of becoming faculty. Bulls eye. This work should help frame the directions I seek to explore within journalism programs.

On the professional practice side, the databases were weak (almost nothing on curriculum, compared with the teacher-faculty corpus). The web, however (thanks to Twitter) revealed a gold nugget in a new report from the Tow Centre on what they’re calling “Post Industrial Journalism”. Written by C.W. Anderson, Emily Bell and Clay Shirky, the report begins its first chapter with the title “The transformation of American journalism is unavoidable.”

I also started to map last week in more earnest manner a sketch of a proposal outline. I realize I don’t work in blocks of well-crafted text but see things visually — in ‘maps’. If the technology existed (cheaply) today, I would have one of those projection units that turned my office wall into a huge space in which I could drag, drop and otherwise ‘mess with’ the map. Until then, word and excel will have to do. 🙂

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