-From Asia Pacific Media Educator
Journalism education is shaping up as one of the premier fields of education in India and the world over. With the changing industry trends, there is an evident revision of curriculum in academia, incorporating practical sessions with theoretical classes, and inclusion of dedicated courses on new media. There is a changing trend regarding faculty qualifications and skill set, including new media in administrative tasks, pedagogy, evaluation, and feedback. It becomes pertinent to study the stance of heads of institutions in journalism schools in different universities in India, regarding new media usage.
Students in the journalism programme are now required to take basic and advanced courses on new media journalism, production, and design. These courses are designed to develop the pupils’ competence to produce high-quality journalism in a new media environment, and to help them understand some of the critical issues facing journalists today and in the future. Students also explore the implications and use of experimental new media technologies for journalism, the nature of news content and the evolving structure of news organizations to include news and content dissemination. With learning the fundamentals of upright conventional journalism, students also get experiential learning in reporting in an online, networked world where deadlines are nonstop, stories are interactive and multimedia in nature, and newsrooms are decentralized as regards authority.
This study explores private and public (government) journalism schools in India and focuses on their willingness to adopt the requisite skill set and display adaptability towards using new media. It includes interviews conducted with administrators (who are also educators) in government and private journalism institutions in the country, concerning acceptance of new media and adoption in curriculum, instruction, evaluation and feedback.
From the perspective of drift in journalism education in the country relating to new media, psychographic factors had a larger role to play in usage and adoption of new media by administrators in government and private journalism schools in the country, than did the demographic factors, and institutional heads from private-run journalism schools showed better self-reliance and adaptability concerning using new media tools. On the other hand, an understanding of the demographic factors revealed that heads of institutions from government universities displayed better experience and qualifications than those from their private counterparts.
Journalism administrators/educators must sooner or later accept the technology that governs the new media industry. In one’s desire to learn the usage of new media tools, it is important to emphasize the interaction of different resources in determining access, one such resource is the Internet. Family, friends, and other peers in online and offline spaces become significant to facilitating access to the technology, knowledge, and social connections required to geek out.