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William Peace University’s Lynn Owens, Ph.D., Named A World Journalism Education Congress Finalist

By William Peace University on August 6, 2013 1:44 pm

William Peace University’s Lynn Owens, Ph.D., Named A World Journalism Education Congress Finalist
Associate Professor Of Communication For Four-Year Baccalaureate University Co Authors Research Paper That Garners International Recognition At World Journalism Education Council Conference

RALEIGH, N.C. – William Peace University (http://www.peace.edu), a private four-year university located in downtown Raleigh, has announced that Lynn C. Owens, Ph.D., co-authored a research paper that recently received international recognition by the World Journal Education Congress. Dr. Owens, who serves as the university’s associate professor of communication and communication department chair, co-authored the research paper with Deb H. Wenger, associate professor of the University of Mississippi. Their paper on “The Evolution of Journalism Skills Required by Top U.S. News Companies” won third place at the World Journalism Education Council Conference. Among more than 100 submissions, Owens and Wenger’s paper was the only U.S. paper to place, and the two professors are now in the process of publishing the document.

Through their research, Owens and Wenger explored the growing skills needed for employment across the journalism profession and what is most critical in delivering appropriate journalism instruction. By utilizing content analysis from the same three-month period in 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2012, the research evaluated all employment opportunities posted by the top 10 newspaper and broadcast companies across the United States. The results indicated a significant increase in the desire for mobile and social media skills as well as an increased emphasis on multimedia capabilities. For educators, the research paper argues the need to create more methodical instructional approaches in an effort to enhance technology-related skills that directly impact the journalism industry overall.

“We cannot ignore the fact that every industry around us is continuing to grow, expand and improve itself at a rapid pace, which means that future employees will need to be better equipped with the necessary skills to serve as effective industry leaders and professionals,” said Debra M. Townsley, Ph.D., president of William Peace University. “That is why we are so proud to have professors like Lynn Owens as a member of our faculty to guide and direct education as it continues to evolve. Lynn’s research is outstanding, and we look forward to having her work published and shared with the general public, so that other institutions can begin to reevaluate whether they are teaching the skills that are most imperative to today’s journalism students.”

“As educators, it critically important that we understand the changes that face our industry and revise and modify our methods of instruction to ensure that students graduate and can fully contribute to the needs of future employers,” said Owens. “Our research uncovers the changes in the field of journalism and the growing skills that are needed now and in the future. We are honored that the World Journalism Education Council recognized our findings, and we look forward to implementing these skills within our own institutions and those around us over the coming years.”

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