The School and its activities
We commit to serving the undergraduate students who come to Bloomington from across Indiana, the United States, and around the world, as well as the media professions that our students join upon graduation and the greater society that they serve. In meeting these goals, we must provide the best possible instruction in media research, production, and professional craft.
We commit to providing excellent pre-professional training with a liberal arts orientation, as the two experiences inform one other. We will continue working closely with the College of Arts and Sciences to articulate the goals and means to achieve this vision.
The School will conduct regular reviews of our approach to teaching media literacy in our core courses. The School will also seek to promote a campus-wide general education requirement for media literacy, to be offered by the Media School.
The School will maintain a flexible and forward-looking curriculum that meets the educational needs of students pursuing careers in the rapidly changing professions we serve.
The School will promote innovative course delivery and design, including short-term and low credit courses to facilitate exposure to emerging topics, issues, and technologies.
The School will increase the number of skilled professionals visiting campus as guest speakers and providing intensive, short-term workshops for our students.
The School will continue to seek external validation for the quality of undergraduate courses of study in the Media School through engagement with short-term focus groups (from academic and professional sectors) intended to offer recommendations and help us continue refining what we do.
The School will enhance and expand efforts to place and support students in internships. To that end, the School will commit to hiring more staff focused on career counseling, experiential learning, and developing “first job connections.”
The School will seek to increase the number of undergraduate students winning awards in regional and national competitions in all media by providing the support required to be competitive. Where possible The School will financially support qualified entrants.
The School will seek endowments to provide additional visiting faculty for terms of one to two years.
The School will seek to develop additional scholarships for students across the curriculum.
The School will continue to build alumni relationships, providing alumni increased opportunities to interact with the School and to work with students on professional development.
The School will continue to maintain ACEJMC and PRSA accreditation, and seek formal external accreditation for additional School programs as appropriate.
The School will promote an ethic of outreach in the community through incorporation of service learning in a variety of coursework and extracurricular activities.
The School will support Phi Beta Kappa, Kappa Tau Alpha, and Alpha Delta Sigma honor societies and encourage student participation in these and other discipline-specific honors societies. The School will look to increase the number of similar opportunities for its students.
The School will identify and highlight the best undergraduate student work across the School and use it to recruit and further develop the School’s reputation.
The School will commit resources to preparing undergraduates for graduate education. This will include development and creation of 5-year BA/MS (4+1) programs.
The School will contribute substantially to the University goal of being more internationally focused.
The School will improve its outreach to the state, the nation, and the world, ensuring the School plays a leading role in ongoing discussions on the subjects of making, managing, and thinking about media.
We commit to working across all sectors of the School to support graduate study.
We commit to ensuring that the School recruit the best graduate students and introduce them to interdisciplinary debates across media fields, as well as provide them the opportunity to do advanced work in their chosen area of study.
We support smart and innovative growth of our graduate program. In the short term, the School will consider the creation of new graduate programs, especially at the Masters level.
The School commits to rigorous programs of graduate study.
The School will use its available communication resources to promote its graduate programs.
The School will actively direct, promote, and showcase graduate student work and mentor students in their efforts to pursue careers after completing their program of study.
The School aspires to produce graduates who excel in the academy, in industry, and in public service through a commitment to professionalization and pedagogical training.
Research and creative activity
We will continue to support a tradition of outstanding research and creative activity and we will strive to make that commitment more public.
We must restate and renew our commitment to hiring faculty who are or have the potential to be outstanding and innovative in research and creative activity.
The School will continue to enhance its publicity of our research and creative activity mission.
The School commits to ensuring that research/academic alumni be more actively included in research programming and outreach so that they can become ambassadors of our new graduate program and new research initiatives.
The School commits to creating and/or strengthening its bonds with other schools and departments at IU in order to increase the visibility of faculty research and creative activity of the media within Indiana University.
The School strives to be among the very best centers of excellence in media research and creative activity in the country and around the world.
The School should continue to seek involvement with other research and creative units across campus.
The School should increase internal support for diverse forms of faculty research and creative activity. In parallel, faculty are encouraged to increase activity related to seeking external funding.
We aim to maintain IU’s historical commitment to shared governance while developing innovative and efficient means for doing so. As the School begins its third year following creation of its governance documents, we have an opportunity to review how well the document is working. To this end, we commit to open and transparent communication among the Faculty Advisory Board, Media School administration, and faculty.
Each group — the Faculty Advisory Board, the administration, and faculty — maintains the power to ask for a reconsideration of a current policy it deems not to be working well. The governance document should be living and responsive to the needs of all members of the School.
Various groups can originate and develop policy so as to contribute to the democratic participation and functioning of the School.
We stress the continued importance of diverse representation on the major committees and positions of influence within the School—a principle evident in the current governance document.
The School aims to be a leader in hands-on studio, field, and gaming technology production for students.
Communication technology is constantly changing. The School’s technology plan must be nimble and fluid enough to incorporate technological and software innovations that advance the production and dissemination of communication. For Media School facilities to stay at the forefront among leading universities, stakeholders should be cognizant that change is rapid, that competitor schools invest heavily in change, and that we will need to make significant, regular, and ongoing investments in technology and software.
The Media School will continue to develop a mechanism for prioritizing access to production facilities and equipment. Students requiring access to facilities and equipment for course-related creative activities will have the highest priority, but the School will also establish policies for ensuring maximum access to these valuable assets for other members of the Media School community.
In keeping with the mission of our School and the University, the large screen in the commons will keep students apprised of global and local matters; showcase works by students, organizations, and faculty; serve as a public space for events; and assist in the branding of the Media School. The School will develop a mechanism for ensuring that the screen is consistently used for these purposes.
The School will expand its outreach programs, recognizing that such communication efforts must be aimed at two key publics: internal — student, faculty and University audiences — and external — community, state, national, and international audiences.
The School will develop plans for addressing issues of diversity in our enterprise. Discussions for this effort will begin in Fall 2017; an ad hoc committee will be created and tasked with this charge. In advance of that exercise we agree on the following important principles:
At the founding of the Media School, our greatest challenge is the balkanization of messages aimed at increasingly narrow audiences. Our challenge is to find the means for Indiana and the country to regain and promote places and spaces for widely-shared discourse on important issues.
In the media disciplines, our core value is protection of the free flow of ideas. We hold that defense of this value is the best means toward the preservation of rights for all. Freedom to communicate is a fundamental human right.
The idea that a marketplace of ideas is the best way for societal solutions to surface also brings with it another task. Freedom to communicate implies that all sectors of society should have the ability to participate in this marketplace.
Everyone should have a place at the table. This means that the Media School supports diversity in its programs as a way to maximize the number of voices that participate in vital debates. It means that we seek to encourage diversity in many ways: through encouraging gender, racial, sexual, ethnic, and class diversity of our students and faculty; through ensuring access to our programs to people of varying economic means; and encouraging as much political, ideological, scientific, religious, and artistic variety as possible in our School. We believe that vigorous debate requires many contending voices.
Our goal and our ultimate measure of diversity is that every qualified student be able to attend our School without regard to social background or economic means. Similarly, our goal in faculty and staffing should be to attain a diversity of ideas and approaches, representing the entire spectrum of media issues.
Indiana University states: “We must include all who comprise our diverse university community and foster a campus climate in which those diverse influences are respected and valued.” The Media School fully endorses this statement, and we further aver that a diverse community must be manifested in the media activities of our University, both to the benefit of our campus climate, and to the training of individuals who will contribute to creation of the best possible future for the media professions.