Julie L. Taylor and Maria Blevins, “COMMcast: Producing Podcasts for Communication Theory,” Communication Teacher 34 (2020): 272-276.
In this article, Taylor and Blevins outline a class exercise that utilizes podcasts as a pedagogical tool for teaching Communication theories. This activity instructs students to split into groups and develop a six- to eight-minute podcast episode that will be presented in class. Each episode must define one of the Communication theories introduced in class and offer applications of the theory within the context of a narrative structure that aims to engage listeners. Taylor and Blevins note that assessment scores and class participation have increased since the implementation of this exercise.
Chia-Fang (Sandy) Hsu and Jun Chen, “The Influences of Host and Ethnic Internet Use on Sociocultural and Psychological Adaptation Among Chinese College Students in the United States: Intercultural Communication Apprehension and Uncertainty Reduction as Mediators,” Journal of International and Intercultural Communication, DOI: 10.1080/17513057.2020.1718739.
In this study, Hsu and Chen explore the effects that internet use has on cross-cultural adaptation. Questionnaire responses of 152 Chinese students enrolled at a small university in the United States indicate that host internet use among international students is associated with lower intercultural communication apprehension and uncertainty levels, which then positively effects sociocultural and psychological adaptation. Findings also reveal that ethnic internet use does not affect cross-cultural adaptation among respondents. This article concludes by emphasizing the vital role the internet plays in allowing students to assimilate to a new culture and indicates that additional internet-based strategies can be developed to support cultural newcomers.
Susana Martínez Guillem and Marco Briziarelli, “Against Gig Academia: Connectivity, Disembodiment, and Struggle in Online Education,” Communication Education 69 (2020): 356-372.
This essay examines the influence of neoliberalism in higher education, specifically highlighting the concept of the “gig academy.” Martínez Guillem and Briziarelli explain that institutions have turned to online instruction as a strategy for reducing university expenses and encouraging the mass production and consumption of academic labor. The authors posit that these conditions lead to an overwhelmed and unmotivated academic workforce, which is a disservice to faculty and students. Martínez Guillem and Briziarelli advocate for faculty unionization as a means of achieving improved working conditions, underscoring the power of organization and collective voice.