The School of Journalism and Mass Communication
The School of Journalism and Mass Communication (SJMC), located in the College of Liberal Arts, offers an undergraduate major in Journalism with three distinct emphases: Journalism, Strategic Communication, and Mass Communication. Although they are distributed into these three subfields, nearly 700 enrolled majors are keenly aware of the extent to which their writing—whether they are reporting news, designing ad campaigns, or devising public relations materials—has the power to shape audiences’ opinions and actions. And, although writing is a core competency in all three programs, faculty members are unevenly satisfied with the level of writing competency across the SJMC curriculum.
In Spring 2017, SJMC successfully submitted its third-edition Writing Plan, identifying the following activities to deepen and sustain its WEC efforts: (1) conducting a series of workshops for faculty, graduate instructors and teaching assistants on methods for developing effective writing assignments; providing useful comments on student work; assigning ethical and constructive grades; and supporting multilingual writers; (2) developing an online teaching resource on assignment prompts and grading rubrics; (3) assessing its current admissions writing exam to consider common weaknesses, and to consider methods of early intervention.