Sunday, January 22, 2012

First lecture tomorrow!

[Here's an updated version of the email I sent to the whole class on Sunday before the semestser began.]

Hi folks. Welcome to this brand-new course in the School of Journalism & Mass Communication, "Media Fluency for the Digital Age." (This first time around, in Spring 2012, we're teaching the course under our J 176 "topics" number, but we hope to make it a permanent course under the J 101 number in the future.) For those of you interested in the new Digital Studies Certificate Program, this course is intended to serve as a gateway to that credential.

I'm your professor, Greg Downey. I'm a faculty member in both the School of Journalism & Mass Communication (where I currently serve as the Director) and the School of Library & Information Studies. In the past I've taught other introductory lecture courses like "Introduction to Mass Communication" and "The Information Society." This new course takes elements from both of those, but focuses much more closely on the new media tools and industries that increasingly demand your "fluency" in our digital, networked age.

We have one TA for this course, a senior Ph.D. student in the School of Journalism & Mass Communication named Davita Veselenak. She's got a load of teaching experience already, and I am delighted that she is going to be helping me design and deliver this new course. (Those of you in sections 302 and 303 will have her as your TA, and those of you in section 301 will have to make do with me.)

Our first lecture is tomorrow, Monday, January 23, in 4028 Vilas at 8:50am. You'll find out all the details of the class then. I'll also be building a course web site, sort of in realtime, at (there's not much there now, but I'll fill it up tomorrow). The only required reading for the course is a $35 xeroxed reader available now at ASM Student Print, just next door to Vilas Hall in the student services tower on the third floor. (Probably a good idea to pick it up after lecture tomorrow, because there are a few readings I will want you to do for section this week.)

This will be a fun semester, and I think we'll all learn a lot. See you tomorrow,


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