Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism to Hire Director and Writers to Lead Newly Established Knight Case Studies Initiative
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Media Contact: Melanie A. Farmer, 212-854-9082 or email@example.com
Program Contact: Jeff Richard, 212-854-1148
New York, August 30, 2006 – The Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism today announced three key positions available for the newly established Knight Case Studies Initiative. Made possible through a $1.25 million grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Knight Case Studies Initiative will integrate a method of instruction using real-world case studies into the school’s curriculum. Students will observe the process of making the news from inside working newsrooms to learn about editorial, ethical and economic aspects of the newsroom decision-making process.
The Graduate School of Journalism is seeking a director of case studies development and two case studies writers.
The director, who will report to the school’s dean, will be responsible for implementing the methodology and managing the process of writing case studies. This person will also identify topics and newsrooms from which cases will be selected, by working closely with faculty, administrators and industry contacts. The director will also serve as the public relations officer for case studies. The two case study writers will research, write and edit the case studies for classroom use.
For more detailed information on these positions, visit http://jobs.columbia.edu/.
Launched in June, the Knight Case Studies Initiative will illustrate the real-time ethical, management and leadership issues that publishers, executive editors and senior correspondents consider when making decisions. Major news organizations will provide raw material for these case studies, including allowing educators to capture audio and video footage in their newsrooms.
Columbia’s Center for New Media Teaching and Learning (CCNMTL) will help professors shape the cases into interactive modules. These multimedia contributions, coupled with classroom discussion, will teach the process of newsroom decision-making in ways that further the creation of fair, accurate, contextual news in the public interest.
Using this model, patterned after a process refined at Harvard Business School, students will be able to see real-world situations unfold from inside working newsrooms. As students move through the case studies, teachers will have them make their own decisions before revealing what actually happened.
The Knight grant will provide for the creation and production of a dozen innovative teaching cases over the next four years. The most popular of these will be posted publicly on the school’s Web site and at News University, the Poynter Institute’s e-learning center for journalists. The long-range goal is to create a new class at the journalism school and help the school move toward the establishment of a leadership center. By providing powerful new tools for teachers and professionals, the center seeks to change the way decision-making in journalism is taught in this country.
The School of Journalism has already tested three cases. The first one followed one day’s news cycle at The Washington Post from the point of view of Leonard Downie Jr., the paper’s executive editor who decides what to put on the front page. Another looked at reporting from Knight Ridder’s Washington bureau on Iraq’s weapons capabilities during the buildup to and aftermath of the 2003 invasion. Knight Ridder was significantly more skeptical about those capabilities than most American news organizations, and the case illustrates how to question official versions of the news on national security matters. The third case walked students through an analysis of the data available to reporters covering Hurricane Katrina.
The partnership between Columbia University’s Journalism School and the Knight Foundation is the latest in an ongoing relationship. Knight also supports the Knight-Bagehot Fellowship Program in Economics and Business Journalism; provides funding for the Columbia Journalism Review; trains education reporters through the Hechinger Institute on Education and the Media; supports curriculum reform and advanced investigative reporting through the Carnegie-Knight Initiative for the Future of Journalism Education; and endowed a Knight Chair in Business Journalism held by Sylvia Nasar, one of 19 Knight Chairs in Journalism across the country.
About Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
For almost a century, the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism has been preparing journalists in a program that stresses academic rigor, ethics, journalistic inquiry and professional practice. Founded by Joseph Pulitzer in 1912, the school offers Master of Science, Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees.
About Columbia University
Founded in 1754 as King’s College, Columbia University in the City of New York is the fifth oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and today is one of the world’s leading academic and research institutions. For more information about Columbia University, visit www.columbia.edu.