School of Journalism and New Media

The University of Mississippi

Examination of job skills wins paper award at World Journalism Education Congress

Posted on: July 19th, 2013 by

WJEC-Win-EditThe need for journalists to have strong social and mobile media skills has skyrocketed in the past three years, but the need for basic journalism skills remains critical, too.   The bottom line is that journalism educators must prepare their students to do more than ever before.

Those are the findings of an award-winning paper co-authored by Meek School Associate Professor and head of the journalism program, Debora Wenger.  One of Wenger’s co-authors, Dr. Lynn Owens, heads the journalism program at William Peace University; the two have been replicating this study since 2008 in order to track the needs of the journalism industry.

This year’s paper took third place at the World Journalism Education Congress in Mechelen, Belgium on July 5 — the only U.S. paper to place in the competition.  The Meek School’s Darren Sanefski and Pat Thompson are also involved in the project — Sanefski is interpreting the results graphically and Thompson and Wenger are working on a piece that more fully explores the findings about mobile news skills.

The paper examines job postings from the Top 10 newspaper and TV companies in the U.S. and also looks at online-only positions.  The researchers break down the results by medium and by job category to give educators a better idea of the industry’s expectations of journalism graduates.

You can explore the list of skills and attributes by news medium in the graphic below or read the paper online (registration required).