IWU Media and Convergent Journalism faculty are spending their summer learning trends and techniques that will shape future communication classes. Three IWU Com & Theatre faculty attended Teachapalooza 2012, an intensive 3 day conference for faculty at The Poynter Institute for Media Studies in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Dr. Randall E. King, Division Chair and Director of Broadcast Media, Dr. Kyle Huckins, Convergent Journalism Coordinator and Dr. Mark Perry, Media Com Professor and advisor to 94.3 FM-The Fortress, attended the blitz of workshops and seminars at Teachapalooza, along with nearly 100 faculty from colleges and universities across the country.
The Poynter Institute is one of the nation's leading schools for professional journalists, hosting internationally known conferences and training for professional journalists. Teachapalooza has emerged as a signature event for educators wanting to keep up with rapid changes in technology and professional practice. Speakers included Al Tompkins, noted broadcast journalism expert and Poynter faculty member, Sree Sreenivasan, Chief Digital Officer for Columbia University and Mark Briggs, Director of Digital Media at KING-TV in Seattle.
The seminar will have immediate impact in several IWU courses such as Intro to Multimedia Storytelling, taught by Perry and Convergent Journalism, taught by Huckins. “I'm bringing back to Marion new information on social and other media that will be very helpful to our journalism students,” said Huckins.
Many of the sessions dealt with social media – Facebook, Twitter, etc. and their direct impact on media work. IWU students can expect to be tweeting, blogging and integrating social media in new ways this year, in tune with how professional journalists now use these tools on the job. “The best thing about Teachapalooza was being challenged to think how I might integrate social media within my classes to adequately prepare students,” Perry said.
The faculty also shared teaching tips and insights from their own experiences. King was a featured presenter, demonstrating methods for shooting and editing video using the iPhone and selected products from Vericorder Technology used on the WIWU-TV program Crossroads and for last fall's Marion city election coverage.
“The one thing that is clear from Teachapalooza is that we can't teach media skills the way we did even five years ago,” said King. “It's a challenging but exciting time to be preparing to work in media and we're going to make sure our program is ready to give students the best head start they can get, along with providing the longstanding principles of good storytelling.”