Student Work


One of the things I tell students to do like Chicagoans vote — early and often — is to Google themselves. You need to know what’s out there about you so you can control the public presentation of yourself when it’s time to look for a job. I demand students clean up their online acts well before potential employers may be lurking around as faux Facebook friends looking for reasons to dump half the stack of resumes they’ve got. I Googled myself and found this YouTube clip. It’s raw footage from an interview I did with some of my Oregon State University students on the impact of new media on the election of President Obama:

https://i1.wp.com/s7.addthis.com/static/btn/lg-share-en.gif

A student of mine is writing a story about Twitter on campus for another class. I thought his questions — and hopefully my answers — were worth a blog post:

1) What’s your official title at Oregon State University? What name would you like to be referred by in the article? What’s your age? Finally, how long have you been teaching?

ANSWER: I’m an Instructor in NMC at OSU. Pamela Cytrynbaum. Second reference is always “Cytrynbaum.” I’m 43. I’ve been teaching in one form or another for 12 years.

Now onto our subject.

2) Do you think Twitter is widely used by students on campus? Have you encountered Twitter in any of your classrooms (as an interruption or distraction, perhaps)?

ANSWER: No, I don’t see much use of Twitter on campus at all. In fact, I’ve been surprised at how few students have even heard of it when I raise the question in all of my classes. Very few of my my students — most of whom are new media students — use it. I require my NMC 301 (Writing for the Media Professional) students to learn it and do one assignment where they Twitter an event. It’s important for them to know what it is and how to use it. Once that’s done, it’s up to them to continue or not. Some do.

I think it seems useless to many students. They’ve got texts and Facebook messages coming in…what do they need this shortened social networking tool for? Far fewer students seem to continue on with Twitter after learning it in class than with blogging. I have many students who blog for the first time in my class and then get hooked and build their blogs and keep them going. They see the value in that. I’m not sure Twitter offers enough payoff for the effort. For me, I’ve had lots of fun with it. I use it as storage for all kinds of links I want to keep for classes, to connect with organizations, media outlets, friends, writers, to keep up with their lives and work. I don’t follow anybody who uses Twitter to proclaim an ingrown toenail. I’m looking for actual information.

I’m a working, writing mom. I don’t have one second in the day to waste on that.

3) Do you think Twitter has any potential as a teaching aid? In your opinion, should teachers or campus officials use Twitter to spread information to students?

ANSWER: I can’t speak for any other teachers or tell them what to do. I know from being a Twitter Follower of the Chronicle of Higher Education (and a regular reader) that there are lots of professors arguing for and against the use of Twitter. One story I read was by someone advocating the use of Twitter DURING classes and conference lectures as a way to INCREASE engagement.

Personally, I’d lose my mind juggling that. I’d rather have somebody comment in person so I can see them, hear them, respond one human being to another. But this person argued strongly that for them, Twittering deeply enriched the teaching experience. It’s important to take it seriously, though, and not just ignore or disregard Twitter. There are plenty of stories and surveys that have found Twitter is the top social networking medium for helping people get immediate information on natural disasters, like the Indonesian Tsunami. But, as we’ve seen just yesterday in the news about the swine flu issue, it’s also a mechanism for spreading false or overly-hyped information that can be deeply concerning. Either way, it’s here, and the larger plugged-in world is taking advantage of this technology. We need to check it out for ourselves and make our own choices.

(more…)

My 301 Writing for the Media Professional class will be in a frenzy of inaugural Twittering and blogging for tonight’s class. They’ve just set up their blogs and one student, Ryan, wrote a post I thought I’d share here. I asked students to write a “media self inventory” describing what media (new and old) they consume, in what format, how often, and for how long. Ryan’s co-op just completed a media blackout, which created an opportunity for Ryan to think and write critically about new media in the face of its absence. Read all about it:

Media Blackout…Good?

January 13, 2009 · No Comments

My first post for this blog is going to be a self evaluation of what media I consume and contribute daily. This self evaluation comes at an interesting time for myself. I currently am the president of a all guys Christian co-op just off of campus at Oregon State University. Towards the end of last term (Fall Term) our house decided that during the first week of winter term we would have a media blackout. A blackout from all electronic media including television, Internet, movies, and video games. The idea behind the blackout was to in some ways force people out of there rooms and be more social with each other. Having completed such blackout I have come to realize several things.

Read more at Ryan’s blog:

http://osusportsfan.wordpress.com/

Amazing New Media student at OSU gets an amazing opportunity!! Read it and weep, which is what I did. Yeah Taryn!!!

http://oregonstate.edu/dept/ncs/newsarch/2008/Dec08/luna.html

12-9-08

Media Release

OSU Student Selected for New York Times Institute

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University student Taryn Luna is one of 20 students nationwide to be selected to attend the New York Times Student Journalism Institute for members of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists in Miami in January.

Luna was selected to attend the 10-day program at Florida International University beginning this Jan. 2. Students were competitively selected by a panel of journalists at The New York Times from among a pool of student members of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists who applied from around the country. More than 40 different colleges and universities were represented among the applicants.

Students are selected based on an essay of up to 500 words, clips or portfolios of their work, and their experience in journalism. Graduates of the Institute have interned at or now work at some of the most prestigious news organizations in the United States, including The Washington Post, the Associated Press, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, USA Today, The Boston Globe and, of course, The New York Times itself, along with many other newspapers and news organizations.

Luna was recommended by OSU New Media Communications faculty member Pam Cytrynbaum. Luna, from Dixon, Calif., is a junior majoring in New Media Communications.

“Taryn is exactly the kind of student who will thrive in the Times’ program,” Cytrynbaum said. “It is especially an honor for her to be selected because she isn’t coming from a traditional journalism program, but from our New Media program.”

Students at the institute work with veteran journalists from The Times, The Boston Globe and the Times Company’s regional newspapers in a newsroom environment. Participating students have covered presidential speeches and campaign events, the funeral of a famous mob leader, issues such as immigration, and dozens of other stories.

In keeping with her New Media Communications student status, Luna has written online about her experience of being chosen and will comment via her blog from Miami.

“I honestly didn’t think this kind of opportunity would be possible,” Luna said. “The experience of working one-on-one with a professional in the journalism field is what I’m most excited for. I’m hoping this opportunity will show me what aspects of my writing need to improve in order for me to reach the professional level.”

For more information on New Media Communications, go to: http://oregonstate.edu/cla/nmc/ http://oregonstate.edu/cla/nmc/

About the OSU College of Liberal Arts: The College of Liberal Arts includes the fine and performing arts, humanities and social sciences, making it one of the largest and most diverse colleges at OSU. The college’s research and instructional faculty members contribute to the education of all university students and provide national and international leadership, creativity and scholarship in their academic disciplines.

Media Contact

Angela Yeager,
541-737-0784

Source

Pam Cytrynbaum

Source

Taryn Luna