Domestic, Education Quality, Faculty, Journalism, Required, Universities & Colleges - Written by on Wednesday, March 21, 2012 17:39 - 0 Comments

Heard: Outsourcing University Journalism Instruction To Non-Profit Organizations?

Fox Business’ web site published an interesting story this week by Emily Driscoll titled “Universities Turn to Outsourced Professors to Cut Costs.” She notes that some cash-strapped colleges and universities are outsourcing faculty - hiring outside organizations as adjuncts rather than hiring individual faculty or adjuncts - as a way to save budgets. It is going beyond use of part-time and adjunct faculty members. She highlights the Florida-based journalism training organization called the Poynter Instutute, a non-profit that owns the St. Petersburg Times newspaper. Poynter is now moving into offering journalism classes to state universities. She doesn’t show convincingly, however, that the trend is widespread beyond the Poynter Institute example.

With high unemployment and an average state budget shortfall estimate of –16.9%, most state public universities faced significant budget cuts for the 2011 school year, according to a study conducted by US News and World Reports.

Both Florida Atlantic University and Missouri State University recently partnered with the Poynter Institute, a non-profit journalism training group, to outsource their online journalism classes. “FAU’s decision to participate in the pilot program was based on the forward-looking vision of its journalism program, with its focus on multimedia journalism in a convergent digital media landscape,” says Eric Freedman, assistant dean of the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters at Florida Atlantic University.

Although colleges argue that outsourcing professors and academic programs are beneficial to both the students and the school, some worry this cost-saving measure can taint a school’s reputation and take away from the students’ learning experience. What this means for schools While Missouri State University decided not to continue its relationship with Poynter because students weren’t writing as much as it wanted, the school isn’t giving up on outsourcing staff. Mark Biggs, head of the Media, Journalism and Film Department at Missouri State University, argues outsourcing faculty can add more resources for less money—good for both the school and students.

Via Fox Business


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2013-02-15 16:00

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