New Concentration in Media Innovation

The Cal Poly Journalism Department is now one of only a handful of programs in the country offering a concentration in media innovation, allowing students to focus their studies on the intersection of journalism, business and technology. 

The department's curriculum committee, led by professors Patrick Howe and Patti Piburn, spent the past few years researching and refining the new concentration to best serve students who are entering a constantly evolving media landscape.  

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Media innovation students will learn how to develop new storytelling approaches, use analytics to understand audience behavior, foster inclusive civic participation, create innovative media products and experiment with revenue models. 

Kim Bisheff, a long-time lecturer in the department who has expertise in everything from entrepreneurship to editing and multimedia production, will take on a new role as an assistant professor overseeing the new concentration.  

Bisheff is eager to teach students how to come up with new ideas and solutions for problems facing the media industry related to credibility, polarization, engagement and minority marginalization.  

“At a polytechnic university, this is where we should be innovating solutions to the big problems,” Bisheff said.   

The media innovation concentration is one of four options students have in the department's redesigned curriculum. Other concentrations are news -- with specialties in either broadcast or print/digital -- a strengthened public relations program that includes a new PR research course, and a new "design-your-own" concentration. 

“We believe that this new curriculum, which balances core skills in accuracy, writing and storytelling with a focus on diversity and inclusion, ethics and consumer priorities, will position our graduates to land jobs at the forefront of any industry they choose," department chair Brady Teufel said.   

Here’s a short video of Professor Bisheff describing the value of the new concentration.

Link to YouTube video: 

You can view the new curriculum in its entirety here: 

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