ERIC Number: ED333519
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Mass Communication Education Belongs to the University.
McCall, Jeffrey M.
In discussions of media education, mass communication educators have allowed the professional media industry to define the boundaries of dialogue, leaving the academy to respond, defend, and rationalize. This approach has allowed the professional industry to operate for too long under three gross and inaccurate assumptions: (1) that educators have little sense of what best prepares students for the industry; (2) that higher education is responsible for generating their entry-level job pool; and (3) that trade skills and vocational training are parts of the university's mission. Mass communication educators must quickly and convincingly deal with these misdirections, and establish clear reasoning for a new agenda for the mass communication discipline in the academy. The politics and finances of today's university may be the catalyst for media education to establish its position where it rightfully belongs anyway: in the liberal arts. Media courses should be designed to contribute to a student's ability to express ideas in speaking and writing, to reason, to organize, and to have a wider understanding of society. Viable for major and non-majors, courses should focus on the "why" of media processes, rather than on the "how to." To implement the redirection of media study, the discipline must redefine its educational objectives in structure and curriculum, and in faculty hiring. Beyond the department, professionals can provide their real world expertise to students through a variety of non-classroom avenues that can generate potential practitioners. (PRA)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Communications Curriculum; Educational Issues; Media Education
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Broadcast Education Association (Las Vegas, NV, April 12-15, 1991).