Shaping the Field and the Next Generation
Academic excellence at the SOJC begins with our internationally renowned faculty. As award-winning scholars, professionals, and innovators in advertising, journalism, media studies, and public relations, they are just as likely to publish in The New York Times as the Public Relations Review. In the classroom, they are passionate teachers who inform and inspire. Out in the field, they are dedicated mentors who help students build real-world skills and strong industry networks.
Agora Journalism center
media center for science and technology
How can doctors encourage patients to make better decisions about their health? Ellen Peters is examining how emotions, physician communication, and math skills affect how people manage their disease. As director of the Media Center for Science and Technology, her goal is to help the American public make the most of the science information at their fingertips.
Media Center for Science and Technology
Public understanding of science and technology is essential to our wellbeing as a society. But research shows that scientists and citizens often see the same issues through different lenses. The SOJC launched the Media Center for Science and Technology (MCST) to bridge that gap. Housed in Allen Hall on the University of Oregon’s main campus, the MCST conducts interdisciplinary research, trains students for the communication careers of the future, and works to enhance public understanding.
Master’s student Danielle Clarke ’19 moonlighted as a research assistant for professor Troy Elias. Troy is working with SOJC faculty Deb Morrison and Mark Blaine to examine how different ethnic groups react to—and act on—messages about climate change. The study is supported by the SOJC’s new Media Center for Science and Technology, whose mission is to help journalists and strategic communicators improve public understanding of scientific discovery and technological solutions.
Agora Journalism Center
The Agora Journalism Center is the UO’s gathering place for innovation in communication and civic engagement. Fueled by the idea that journalism is crucial to the health of democracy, the Portland-based center convenes academics, students, media partners, and the public to transform how journalists inform and relate to their communities. A national thought leader and incubator in engaged journalism, the center is one of only a handful of U.S. academic institutions working in this emerging field.
“Courtney Munther encouraged me to become a better writer. Her compassionate mentorship, high expectations, and deep knowledge of the subject made her class one of the most challenging and rewarding in my program.”
—Randy Newnham, Public Relations, Class of 2019
In virtual worlds like Second Life, we can take on new identities, defy the laws of biology and physics, and push social boundaries with little to no consequence. But do these online experiences have any effect on our real lives? Associate Professor Donna Davis’s National Science Foundation–funded research shows how interacting as an avatar improves quality of life for people with disabilities.
When polls showed that Americans’ trust in the media fell to 32 percent, SOJC researchers and journalism instructors Lisa Heyamoto and Todd Milbourn decided to find out why. They hosted community discussions around the country to ask what might be done to repair it. Read their recently published Agora Journalism Center Report to learn their six insights about public trust and four recommendations to journalists.
Faculty in the Media
Hot Off the Press!
Read the latest books written and edited by SOJC faculty.