By: Alexa Capeloto | Media Shift
Most journalism professors are probably familiar with the Poynter Institute’s News University, an online training ground of webinars and self-directed courses for media professionals and students. In fact, if they’re like me they incorporate free modules like The Lead Lab and The Be a Reporter Game into their classes. And why not? They are a handy supplement to any Intro to Journalism course.
In higher education, that’s the tradition: outside material as supplementary; faculty-designed course as primary. But what if tradition were turned on its head? What if the supplementary became the primary, so that the third party steered the course while the faculty member provided coaching and consultation?
This is not merely a hypothetical question. Two years ago it was a bold, downright controversial experiment in journalism education launched by none other than News University. At the time, many wondered how it would fare. The quick answer, it would now appear, is “not well.” But the mere effort is an early signal that journalism education is headed for the same upheaval that has already transformed the media industry.
Prior to WW 2, lots of journalists just graduated from high school (the equivalent of an MA today) and went to work for a paper. Copy boy climb the ladder. Now college age students go to some “communications school” and end up $150 grand in debt. Maybe time for all the journalism teachers to consider retiring or just trying to get a job – BUT where? – better to just start your own blog and starve like the idiot students who took out big student loans to listen to your pitch that there’s a future in this falling apart joke of a country.