FIU announces new major in digital media studies

The School of Journalism and Mass Communication along with the Undergraduate Council announced the creation of a new major in Digital Media Studies to address communication trends and issues relevant to the digital revolution.  The school will add this major as an option to all undergraduate students beginning fall 2012 in addition to its existing majors in journalism, advertising and public relations.

The Digital Media Studies program will focus on developing students’ fluency and expertise in researching, analyzing and interpreting media usage in today’s rapidly changing communications landscape. The program will challenge students and prepare them to integrate the new digital technologies into their daily work as they prepare for careers in digital communications. From learning how to interpret metrics and understanding media theory to analyzing public opinion, the new Digital Media Studies major will provide the skills needed for students to stay relevant and competitive.

Students majoring in the new Bachelors of Science in Mass Communication with a specialization in Digital Media Studies will have the additional option of choosing from one of two sub-specializations: digital management or digital content.  Both sub-specializations are designed to teach students how to adapt to new technologies by understanding the processes behind the development of digital media from either a management or a creative perspective.

“Our program will provide a rigorous theory and practice curriculum for students who choose to pursue a communications degree specialization in digital media,” says Dr. Raul Reis, dean at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication. “Our coursework will lay the foundation for our students’ success in the rapidly evolving world that is digital communications – allowing them to further apply their digital skills in a great variety of disciplines.”

The major, which was developed after careful review of students’ skill sets and the evolution of digital communications in the marketplace, will be rolled out in phases to meet students’ completion pace.  The program is built to apply to any course of study outside of the SJMC.

“This program represents the collaborative efforts of faculty who came together in a very collegial way to recognize a need in our students,” said Allan Richards, associate dean at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication. “I give a lot of credit to the faculty for coming together to really analyze and develop the kind of progressive program needed for us to stay ahead by demanding new ways of thinking and utilizing new technologies.”

For more than two decades, the School of Journalism and Mass Communication has developed innovative curriculum to meet the dramatic shifts in the media landscape. The new major in Digital Media Studies continues the School’s mission of producing broadly educated students who can think critically, analytically and compete successfully in today’s job market.

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