National Recognition

A New Jersey journalism instructor has listed Ashland University’s Department of Journalism and Digital Media as one of 47 journalism programs throughout the country that have fully converged its print and broadcast curriculum.

Ashland University’s JDM program is the only journalism program in Ohio that received this distinction.

Dr. Mu Lin, an instructor in the Department of Communication at Georgian Court University in New Jersey, recently compiled a list of approximately 500 colleges and universities from across the country that have journalism programs.

Lin looked at those programs to see how many of them had converged their print and broadcast curriculums, which means that the journalism majors have to learn multimedia skills as part of their major. Lin identified 105 programs as digital/multimedia programs, of which Ashland University’s JDM was included.

"Naturally, the JDM faculty members were thrilled when we read Dr. Lin's findings," department co-chair Tim McCarty said. "It confirmed what we already knew to be true from our research when we created our converged JDM curriculum in 2010. We need to help meet the challenges our students will face upon entering an ever-converging media world."

Lin then broke the journalism programs into four groups: those that are fully integrated, partly integrated, silos and electives only.

Fully integrated programs like the one at Ashland University require all students to take dedicated courses in digital/multimedia reporting, production and/or dissemination, along with reporting and production courses for traditional print and broadcast platforms.

Partly integrated programs require their students to take a multimedia reporting or production class, but then allow those students to choose a concentration of print or broadcast. Silo programs require their majors to choose a concentration that focuses on only one media platform.

Ashland University’s JDM program was the only program in Ohio listed in the fully integrated category. Bowling Green State University was listed as partly integrated, while Ohio University was listed in the silo group.

"Ashland's JDM program is indeed on the forefront of new media education regionally and nationally," McCarty said. "Our program is a model of rigorous academics reinforced by real-world experiential learning opportunities for 21st century journalists."