2014 Election – Lisa Burns Profile

Lisa BurnsLisa M. Burns is a Professor of Communications and Chair of the Media Studies department at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, CT. She teaches courses including Media History; Media Criticism; Sports, Media & Society; Political Communication; Media & Society; and Media Industries & Trends. She is also the founder and co-director of the Sports Studies interdisciplinary minor. She holds a Ph.D. in communication from the University of Maryland at College Park.

While most of her publications focus on media framing of U.S. first ladies and political spouses, Burns’ research interests include media history, collective memory, political communication, media representations of gender, and media criticism. A former broadcast journalist, she won several awards for her work as a news and sports reporter and producer in her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA.

Burns served as the head/program chair of the AEJMC History Division in 2012-13 and before that was the Division’s vice head/research chair, and secretary/newsletter editor. She was the co-coordinator of the Joint Journalism and Communication History Conference, co-sponsored by the AEJMC History Division and the American Journalism Historians Association, planning the 2011 and 2012 meetings. She also served as secretary of the National Communication Association’s Political Communication Division (2006-08). At Quinnipiac, Burns is a Faculty Senator and has chaired several university-wide committees. In 2012, she participated in the Scripps Howard Academic Leadership Academy at LSU.

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2014 Election – Deb Aikat Profile

Debashis AikatA former journalist, Deb Aikat has served since 1995 on the faculty of the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Journalism and Mass Communication. He was elected in 2011 to the AEJMC’s Professional Freedom & Responsibility Committee.

An award-winning researcher and teacher of news media, Aikat was the inaugural winner of the Scripps Howard’s National Journalism Teacher (2003) Award for “distinguished service to journalism education.”

An active AEJMC member for 20 years, Aikat conducted the AEJMC Equity and Diversity Award competition in 2013 and 2014.

A former chair of AEJMC Teaching Committee, Aikat served for six years as an elected AEJMC representative to the ACEJMC Accrediting Council. A 2005 graduate of the AEJMC Journalism Leadership Institute in Diversity, he has won fellowships from USIA, ASNE, Freedom Forum and Poynter.

Aikat’s research interests range across the mass media. His research on international communication, news media and the future of communication has been published in book chapters and refereed articles in ACM SIGDOC, Microsoft Corporation publications, First Amendment Studies, Global Media and Communication, Electronic Journal of Communication, and Convergence: The Journal of Research into New Media Technologies.

The International Radio and Television Society honored him with the Coltrin Communications Professor (1997) award. Aikat earned a Certificate in American Political Culture from New York University and a PhD from Ohio University. He serves on the editorial board of J&MC Educator.

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2014 Election – Tim Gleason Profile

Timothy GleasonTim Gleason is a Special Assistant to the Provost and a Professor of Journalism at the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication (SOJC), where he joined the faculty in 1987, and was dean from 1997 to 2013. As dean, he led the SOJC through three successful reaccreditation reviews. Gleason is the recipient of the 2012 Scripps Howard Foundation Journalism Administrator of the Year Award. He has been an active member of AEJMC and ASJMC for more than 25 years. A member of accreditation site teams since 1995, Gleason represented ASJMC on the Accrediting Council for two terms and twice chaired the ACEJMC Appeals Board. He served on the ASJMC Executive Committee, an ASJMC Constitutional Review Committee, the ASJMC Publications Committee, the ASJMC/AEJMC Committee on Alliances, the Communication Law & Policy Publications Committee, and as a Law Division Research Co-Chair. Gleason’s research and teaching focuses on communication law and ethics. He was a guest editor of Communication Law & Policy and has served on the editorial boards of Communication Law & Policy, Journalism History, American Journalism, Mass Communication and Society, and Journalism Educator.  He was the first recipient of the SOJC Jonathan Marshall Award for Innovative Teaching. Gleason holds the PhD in Communication from the University of Washington. In an earlier career, Gleason was a photojournalist and reporter in New York State.

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2014 Election – Marianne Barrett Profile

Marrianne BarrettMarianne Barrett is the Senior Associate Dean and Louise Solheim Professor at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.  A member of AEJMC for more than 20 years, she has served as an AEJMC representative to the Accrediting Council on Journalism and Mass Communication since 2011.  Previously she was elected to the AEJMC Standing Committee on Teaching and was Head of the Media Management and Economics Division.  An active member of the Commission on the Status of Women, in 2013 Barrett was an inaugural Kopenhaver Center Fellow and participates in the Commission’s’ mentoring program. As an Accrediting Council member Barrett works with the other AEJMC representatives to advocate for the association’s position on a variety of issues. In her current position, Barrett oversees the implementation of curriculum changes including the school’s restructured master of mass communication degree program, its streamlined bachelor of arts in journalism program, and its new online bachelor of arts in mass communication and media studies. Her duties also include mentoring tenure track faculty, coordinating the school’s assessment program and working with other members of the school’s leadership team on the school’s internal program review and Accrediting Council on Journalism and Mass Communication reaccreditation self-studies. Barrett earned her Master of Professional Studies in Media Administration from Syracuse and the PhD in Mass Media from Michigan State.  Her research interests are media management, finance and economics and television programming.

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2014 Election – Paul Voakes Platform

Paul VoakesOf all the great ideas in the AEJMC Strategic Plan, here’s the one that speaks to me most urgently: “We need to respond to changes in the environment.”

That notion emerged as one of the “themes” five years ago that eventually inspired the five strategic directions that now comprise the plan as it’s being implemented. It would be the theme of my leadership. In fact, I’d elaborate: We need to anticipate change in ways that can help our members adapt and thrive in new environments.

This new, digital century has effected profound change in virtually every aspect of our lives as educators. The media professions we study — the professions for which we prepare our students — have undergone such a massive and fast-paced kind of change that we now refer to it as disruption, both technological and economic. How does an organization like ours respond?

I’m extremely proud of the way AEJMC’s members, divisions and leadership have responded thus far. We have expanded and strengthened our connections with the media professions, many of which share with us a common mission: to foster an engaged and informed public. A few examples: We have a new summer externship program, with thanks to the Scripps Howard Foundation, that puts JMC faculty into newsrooms to learn first-hand the latest multimedia technologies. Also, since the adoption of the Strategic Plan we’ve had a President’s Advisory Council, which the president consults in creating public messages on important media issues in the news. In these and many other ways AEJMC enhances its relevance to industries that are undergoing unprecedented change. And it’s time now to broaden our professional affiliations. I was impressed last fall at how many JMC colleagues attended the annual meeting of the Online News Association, a group that’s brimming with innovation. I’d love to see us reach out to more non-traditional groups like ONA.

But there’s another external constituency of ours that cannot be overlooked: higher education itself. Universities have not escaped disruption. Just as with the media industries, some combination of technology and economics is usually driving the changes. I see trends like “massively online” courses and reorganization of communication-related units as opportunities for us to assert the centrality of JMC education —both as an important intellectual pursuit and as an antecedent of young people’s success in what (the Bureau of Labor Statistics is predicting) will be a set of burgeoning fields.

Remember when convergence referred to the blending of online, broadcast and print ? Today we need to imagine collaborations not just across the hall but across campus. How, for example, do ad agencies and journalists analyze “big data”? Computer and information scientists have been developing expertise in this field for years. How, for example, do we teach JMC students how to launch a successful startup? Business schools have been teaching entrepreneurship for decades. This is the kind of convergence that makes sense for our students in coming years. But what does it look like in a JMC curriculum? And how do we persuade administrators of the wisdom of such collaborations? An increasing number of our members are undertaking such conversation and learning a great deal. AEJMC can organize this talent to become a resource for leading these campus-level changes.

I’m excited about three other areas where change abounds in our field, and where AEJMC is already making great strides. The Strategic Plan recognized the importance of the globalization of media, and we have strengthened our ability to reach out to colleagues throughout the world who are interested in improving education, scholarship and, ultimately, the means of freedom of expression. For the Chicago meeting in 2012, for example, AEJMC waived the registration fees for a delegation of Brazilian scholars in attendance. I would love to see a plan for offering similar inducements systematically.

Equally important is the need to keep pace with the expanding diversity of the American people. JMC diversity won’t occur by default or osmosis; it takes creative energy. We can help each other. I applaud the recent launch of the AEJMC Equity & Diversity Award, and I would add one feature. Our competition winners are sometimes asked to share the brilliance that brought the honors — at the annual conference, online, or both. The Committee on Teaching, for example, publishes a booklet each year on a different aspect of JMC pedagogy, and the Newspaper and Online News Division does something similar for teaching news – both the results of competitions. Wouldn’t it be great to see “best practices” for enhancing diversity, presented by the finalists for the Equity & Diversity Award (and thus updated every year)?

Finally, change challenges us to produce research in new ways, on new topics, building new theory. And once again, AEJMC has made a great start in enhancing this dimension of its mission. This past fall I was fortunate to serve as a judge in the Emerging Scholars competition, which awards research grants to assistant professors. The proposals I read were full of fresh perspectives and important new questions. “Junior” faculty, and the graduate students coming along behind them, are the future of this organization. I hope we can continue to grow programs that nurture their development.

Each year, on or about Aug. 10, I feel great. I’ve just returned from the annual conference, awash with new ideas for research and teaching, eager to follow up on new connections I’ve made, thankful to have visited with so many colleagues who have by now become friends. And with any luck at all, I’ve been able to make a contribution in some way to the enterprise. That’s been my good fortune every August since 1991, and the recent additions to the AEJMC website – not to mention the energy of the individual divisions – ensure that these benefits accrue to members year-round. I feel deeply honored to be nominated for this succession of offices, and I thank the Nominations and Elections Committee for this opportunity to give back — to the organization that has given me so much.

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2014 Election – Paul Voakes Profile

Paul VoakesPaul Voakes is a Journalism & Mass Communication professor at the University of Colorado – Boulder. He came to Colorado in 2003 and served as the JMC school’s dean through June 2011. He is currently faculty director of CU’s Digital News Test Kitchen, which seeks to enhance journalism by applying emerging technologies to newsgathering processes, and of the Journalism Summer Intensive Workshop, a residential summer program that prepares incoming first-generation first-year students for academic success.

Prior to his arrival in Boulder, he spent nine years on the faculty of the Indiana University School of Journalism. His Ph.D. is from the University of Wisconsin-Madison; for his dissertation at Wisconsin, he received AEJMC’s Nafziger-White Dissertation Award. His research and teaching specializations are in mass media law and ethics, news writing, reporting and editing, and math/statistics for journalism.

Voakes has enjoyed a number of roles in AEJMC. He has held several offices in the Mass Communication and Society Division and was division head in 2001-02. He served two terms on the Standing Committee on Teaching and chaired the committee from 2005 to 2007, which enabled him to serve on the AEJMC Board of Directors for those two years. He was chair of the Convention Host Committee in 2010, when the meeting was held in Denver. He chaired the Nominations and Elections Committee in 2010 and 2012. He is a member of the Mass Communication & Society, Law & Policy, Media Ethics and Newspaper & Online News divisions.

Voakes’ bachelor’s degree is from the University of California – Davis, and his master’s is from the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California-Berkeley. Before entering academia he was a journalist for 15 years at newspapers in the San Francisco Bay Area, finishing that period as an op-ed columnist and editorial writer for the San José Mercury News.

He is co-author of Working with Numbers and Statistics: A Handbook for Journalists (2005); and a co-author of The American Journalist in the 21st Century, which won SPJ’s Sigma Delta Chi Award in 2007. In 2011 he was named a Fulbright Specialist and in 2012 consulted and taught at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda. He has served two terms on the national Accrediting Committee of the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC).

He won numerous teaching awards at Indiana, and in 2013 he received the Faculty Excellence Award in Colorado’s JMC program.

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2014 Election – Dwight Brooks Platform

Dwight BrooksI am grateful to be nominated for vice president of AEJMC, the association that has played a role in my professional development. Throughout my twenty-year membership, I have tried to give back and serve AEJMC in a variety of ways. I seek this leadership position so that we can work together to fulfill our mission “to promote the highest possible standards for journalism and mass communication education, to cultivate the widest possible range of communication research, to encourage the implementation of a multi-cultural society in the classroom and curriculum, and to defend and maintain freedom of communication in an effort to achieve better professional practice and a better informed public.” The foundation of my leadership in AEJMC is fulfilling this mission by confronting today’s challenges and pursuing opportunities for tomorrow.

We are meeting the important challenge of increasing international initiatives through increased participation in the World Journalism Conference and our 2015 regional conference in Chile. Current President Paula Poindexter and past President Kyu Ho Youm made internationalization central components of their leadership. As a member of two Presidential Advisory Councils, I was proud to contribute to eight Presidential Statements issued over a two-year period. These statements increased our public voice on important issues.

If I am bestowed the privilege of leadership, I will honor the legacy of these and other leaders in advancing AEJMC’s 2008 strategic plan that fulfilled our mission and helped prepare our association for the dynamic global environment in which it operates. Because AEJMC is in a prominent position to lead in an era of change, we also bear the responsibility to remain vigilant in the midst of ongoing challenges and opportunities in journalism and mass communication. I pledge to help lead our association as it embraces the changes we face in our disciplines, universities, industries, and societies.

I was elected twice to serve on the standing committee on Professional Freedom and Responsibility—which has been described fittingly as the “conscience of AEJMC.” In this capacity I joined our membership in celebrating the First Amendment through our First Amendment Awards and helped advance and reward diversity through our Equity and Diversity Award. In 2012-13, I served as PF&R Chair and a member of the AEJMC Board. My platform provides continuity and progression of previous leadership goals and offers some strategies that respond to some of the challenges that we face as educators, professionals, students and scholars.

If elected vice-president, I will promote six interrelated goals that are consistent with AEJMC’s mission and advance our strategic plan:

(a) Strengthen AEJMC’s global presence and initiatives (b) Enhance the reach and impact of our research and scholarship (c) Promote and expand the AEJMC brand as a progressive professional/academic association (d) Increase AEJMC’s financial base by developing and implementing sound fiscal strategies (e) Proliferate partnerships with media industries and professionals in ways that create innovative curricular, training, research and professional development opportunities (f) Expand our diversity and multicultural initiatives by improving access and promoting equity

As noted above, we have a foundation for increased global presence. I support continued participation in the World Journalism Education Conference. One positive step is our first international regional conference in Santiago, Chile, which will extend our international outreach and our research.

Second, AEJMC must continue to play a vital role in enhancing the reach and impact of JMC research. We must expand research opportunities such as our Emerging Scholars Program and partnerships with the Knight Foundation as we did with the News Challenge Grants. We can increase the scope and impact of our research by making it more readable to media professionals and educators who may not be scholars. We need to pursue more research that provides social impact such as utilization of digital technologies.

Third, we successfully have built, promoted and expanded the AEJMC brand through our Presidential Statements, website redesign, and Centennial Campaign. Another strategy would be to increase outreach to community colleges and scholastic journalism programs. Journalism and mass communication are being taught in high schools and community colleges without our involvement. We need to build upon the admirable service and outreach efforts of our Scholastic Journalism Division.  Among the most effective ways to build our brand, global presence, and diversity is through participation in discussions on important journalism and media issues. AEJMC must promote free speech and press freedom in democratic and non-democratic nations. We have improved member services and our brand through conference mobile applications, Twitter feeds and Facebook pages. We must continue to make effective use of digital and social media.

Fourth, our organization cannot thrive without a strong financial base. Our current leadership is building on the work of the Centennial Fundraising Committee to create endowments for AEJMC awards and programs. To become more fiscally-sound, AEJMC will need to create additional endowments. I propose a development strategy that identifies long-term goals and strategies to achieve those goals.

Fifth, AEJMC should create/bolster existing partnerships with professional and academic associations such as the PRSA, ASNE, NABJ, and international alliances with such groups as the Latin American Network Information Center. The expertise of our membership in research, training, teaching and service is our most valuable collaborative asset.

Finally, increasing our diversity is not an option. We must have greater outreach to traditionally underrepresented educators, scholars and practitioners throughout the world. We can do this by building on the efforts of our members and Task Forces to provide training and professional opportunities to members from underrepresented groups.  I became a more effective academic leader because of AEJMC’s leadership opportunities such as JLID. With your support, I will help make these and other opportunities available to our membership and expand AEJMC’s outreach and impact to our various constituencies.

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2014 Election – Dwight Brooks Profile

Dwight BrooksDwight Brooks is Professor and Director of the School of Journalism at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU). Since coming to MTSU in 2009, Brooks has contributed to a successful ACEJMC re-accreditation, was awarded a public service grant on behalf of his school’s sponsorship of the Scripps National Spelling Bee, and led a faculty team that earned a McCormick Foundation grant to host a Specialized Reporting Institute, “Covering Islam in the Bible Belt.” Under his leadership, the school was recently listed among the nation’s top 20 journalism programs based on a NewsPro-RTDNA survey. Prior to MTSU, he was Professor and Chair of the Department of Mass Communications at Jackson State University in Mississippi. Brooks also was a faculty member in the Department of Telecommunications at the University of Georgia’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, in the Department of Telecommunications at Indiana University, Bloomington, and Illinois State University. He earned a Ph.D. from the University of Iowa, a master’s from The Ohio State University, and a BA from East Stroudsburg University.

Brooks fondly recalls presenting his first AEJMC paper in Montreal, 1992. He was elected twice to AEJMC’s Standing Committee on Professional Freedom and Responsibility, and as PF&R chair, served on the AEJMC Board in 2012-13. Brooks’ service to AEJMC includes the Cultural and Critical Studies Division, Minorities and Communication Division, Scholastic Journalism Division, the Commission on the Status of Minorities, and Commission on the Status of Women. He was a 2004-05 Fellow in the AEJMC/ASJMC Journalism Leadership Institute for Diversity. Brooks also is active in ASJMC and has served as chair of its Diversity Committee and member of its Nominating Committee. He also participated in ASJMC’s Leadership Institute. Brooks teaches and researches in race, gender, and media; media literacy; media and society; and diversity issues. His research has appeared in Journalism & Communication Monographs, the Journal of Radio Studies, and The Howard Journal of Communications. He has numerous chapters in textbooks and scholarly anthologies.

Brooks has earned faculty fellowships from the Poynter Institute, International Radio-Television Society, and the National Association of Television Program Executives. His editorial board memberships include Critical Studies in Media Communication and The Howard Journal of Communications. He is a member of the National Communication Association, American Society of News Editors, and the National Association of Black Journalists.

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AEJMC 2014 Election

View 2014 AEJMC Election candidates profiles before voting. Response deadline is April 10, 2014. Elected candidates will take office on October 1, 2014.

Vice President

Click on photo to view the candidate’s profile. Click on platform icon to view candidate’s platform.

 Dwight Brooks  vertical_line  Paul Voakes
 Brooks Platform  Voakes Platform

Accrediting Council Representative

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 Marrianne Barrett  Timothy Gleason

Committee on Professional Freedom & Responsibility

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 Debashis Aikat  Lisa Burns  Heloiza Herscovitz
 Scott Reinardy  Amy Reynolds  Jane Singer

Committee on Research

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 Kimberly Bissell  Victoria Ekstrand  Guy Golan
 Doug Blanks Hindman  Rachel Davis Mersey  George Sylvie

Committee on Teaching

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 David Bulla  Mary Dedinsky  Anita Fleming-Rife
 Dan Haygood  Earnest Perry  Natalie Tindall

Publications Committee

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 Julie Andsager  Amy Jo Coffey  Patricia Curtin
 Wat Hopkins  Carolyn Lin  Karen Miller Russell

About the AEJMC Election…

AEJMC will use an online voting system this year. Eligible members will receive an email with a built-in link to the AEJMC ballot. Response deadline is April 10, 2014. After that the online system will be closed and votes tallied. Eligible members without an email address on file, or whose email bounces back to AEJMC, will receive a paper ballot. Paper ballots received by April 14, 2014, will also be counted and added to the final totals.

The election slate is compiled by the AEJMC Nominations and Election Committee.

Tips from the AEJMC Teaching Committee

Letting Online Students Know You’re There

Susan KeithBy Susan Keith
Standing Committee on Teaching
Associate Professor
Rutgers University

(Article courtesy of AEJMC News, January 2014 issue)

At the beginning of the fall semester a few years ago, two young women stepped into my office and greeted me warmly. They spoke as if I knew them, though I couldn’t recall meeting either. Finally, they noticed my confusion and one said, “Oh, Dr. Keith, we were in your Newer Media Law and Policy course!”

They identified themselves and I realized they had, indeed, been in a summer course I had just taught as part of the Master’s in Communication and Information Studies program at Rutgers University. I failed to recognize them not because the class had been so large that I couldn’t learn students’ faces but because the course, like all the offerings in the MCIS program’s Digital Media track, which my department staffs, was fully online.

The course management system we used did not display avatars for students, so although students knew what I looked like from the headshot I had placed on the course syllabus, all I had seen of them were thumbnail images from their student IDs. In fact, I had thought throughout the summer that one of the women, who had a somewhat unusual first name, was male!

The students told me they had enjoyed the course, and I told them I had enjoyed their questions, comments and final papers. Then one of the students said something like, “I just wish the course could have been face to face.”

Ah! Had it been, I would not have volunteered to teach the course in summer. I commute an hour (by car) to two hours (subway/train) each way. Coming to campus several times a week in the summer would have seriously cut into research time.

The student’s comments, however, implied a legitimate concern over presence, a frequent issue in asynchronous online courses. Although online courses can give a voice to shy students or to international students concerned about their spoken English, other students sometimes miss the camaraderie of classmates they can see and a professor who is “right there.”

However, if you are teaching fully online courses — a topic that will be addressed in the plenary session being organized by AEJMC’s Standing Committee on Teaching for our Montreal Conference — there are things you can do to make students feel your presence in the virtual classroom:

Let students see you right away. I put a small mugshot on my syllabus and have students, before they do anything else, watch a short video of me welcoming them to the course. Although I don’t typically lecture straight to the camera in online courses, I think a video showing me explaining course expectations helps make the human connection.

Answer email more rapidly than in a face-to-face course: For students in off-campus, asynchronous online courses, email (or CMS-based message) is the only way to connect with the instructor. You ignore it at the peril of your teaching evaluation scores.

Encourage cooperative work. As an undergrad, I groaned at the prospect of group work. Now I think at least small group assignments can help alleviate a sense of isolation in online courses. Encourage students to go beyond email as they plan.    If the course management system doesn’t support video chatting, have them try Google+ Hangout (http://www.google. com/hangouts/), which allows multiple people to talk and see each other.

Think critically about discussion boards: Many online      instructors have students post to discussion boards as a way     to simulate in-class discussions. I’m not convinced, however, that most of us use those boards well. Do students see any evidence, through your on-board responses or timely feedback, that you are reading their work? Do you work — behind the scenes, through email — with students who make erroneous    assertions on the boards to help them publically convey correct information? Do you review what students discussed in the     last discussion board assignment before moving on to the next unit?

Consider some synchronous chats: I offer hourlong synchronous group text- or video-based chats eight or 10 times a semester and four times in a five-week summer session. Because my online courses are advertised as asynchronous, I cannot require students to take part, but I find that many are hungry for the connection and join multiple times, especially before big assignments. (I ask students to look over my planned dates and times in the first week of the course, and I adjust if any student says he or she cannot make any of the sessions.) I plan a discussion topic, usually tied to course content in current events. The first thing I do, however, is ask whether students have questions. Sometimes they have many questions and answering them takes the full hour!

These are just a few ways to give students a sense of your presence in online courses.
What are yours? I would love to hear. Drop a note to susank@rutgers.edu.


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