Willard D. Rowland Jr.
University of Coloradoat Boulder
I know what a law school is, and the same goes for business, engineering, and medicine. Why then do I not know what journalism, speech, and communication programs are? You seem to be all over the map.
-- Anonymous provost at a recent NASULGC meeting
The definition of media education varies widely in the U.S. academy. From university to university its very nomenclature suggests a welter of conflicting understandings about what constitutes the field. Programs titled communication, mass communication, journalism, speech, speech communication, communication arts, broadcasting, film, telecommunications, and media studies seldom have exactly the same meaning in different institutions. They might be entirely distinct from one another and vary to quite large degrees in some universities, yet elsewhere they might well overlap and be intertwined in another.
For instance, some journalismprograms are tightly focused on conventional reporting and editing instruction, whereas others with that name are broader, encompassing a range of other communications