Monday, December 22, 2008

Why We're Teaching Students to Blog

At LBCC we're jumping into blogging with both feet. We're primarily doing it because it is one of the skills that the next generation of journalists will have to master, especially as the media gravitates more toward the Internet and all the various platforms (i.e. blogs, social networks, Twitter).

Alfred Hermida of Reportr.net lays out the case for colleges to teach blogging in this post on MediaShift. As he notes:
"The blog has emerged as a powerful platform for journalists to provide context, analysis and interpretation, often including behind-the-scenes information that does not fit into the structure of a traditional news story. It has also provided journalists with a way to communicate with readers in a more conversational and informal tone, rather than in an abstract voice of authority."
We started blogging last term in the News Reporting class. The results were mixed, with some students picking up on the assignment while others struggled to get into the routine. Some of the results can still be seen in the "Student Blogs" section of this blog.

Winter Term we'll be expanding blogging to both the Feature Writing and Photojournalism classes. In Feature Writing the students will choose particular topic areas on which to focus throughout the term, while the Photojournalism students will use the blog as sort of an ongoing portfolio of their work, including background about their various photo projects.

I'm looking forward to both these term-long workshops.

(Photo credit: "What No One Ever Tells You About Blogging" by andyp uk, courtesy of Flickr.com)
-rp-

1 comment:

andypiper said...

Sounds like a really interesting class - and thanks for choosing my picture :-)