This i-Series course in the Philip Merrill College of Journalism deviates from traditional lectures, PowerPoint slides, and written exams. Based on the University of Maryland's Scholarship In Practice rubric, the course blends important concepts with the students' regular production of course-related content using mobile technology and social media. Goals include:
(1) extending technological literacy beyond texting and Facebook use, (2) gaining new skills and knowledge about digital journalism and, (3) learning and applying more effective strategies for communicating digital content about any subject.
Students explore the behaviors of diverse populations as users seek, select and share digital information. The sociological and psychological effects of evolving technologies and explored including issues of privacy, online ethics, and mobile communication. The important thing is to not assume that current behaviors will remain constant. Technology will look much different a few years from today. That is why the course information 3.0 looks to the future for what will surely become a different world regardless of the field in which each student will work.
Phones and tablets are supported all semester in this new classroom model that supports a "manageable educational environment for collaboration" or MEEC. Devices are loaned to any student who needs one. Replacing slides in front of class, the class continuously interacts with and discusses content shared on the mobile device including content that each student produces during the week.
Instead of traditional mid-terms and final exams, most of the credit in this course is earned by completing weekly "team" assignments. These include tweeting, blogging, visualizing, analyzing and assembling up to a 1,000 words with multimedia on each student's ePortfolio.
Regularly composition of original, clear, accurate, evidence-based content replaces the "final" written exam. Journalism courses are, of course, writing intensive. In Information 3.0, students do not need to be "geeks" but are expected to be open to using and learning newer technologies for research, collaboration and assessments. For more info, contact:
Ronald Yaros, Ph.D.
Philip Merrill College of Journalism