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Coordinating Board approves new Digital Media Innovation degree

Posted by Jayme Blaschke
Office of Media Relations
August 17, 2016

The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board has given final approval to a new undergraduate degree in Digital Media Innovation (DMI) in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Texas State University. 

The new degree is scheduled to launch in fall 2016. The Texas State University System Board of Regents approved the degree in February.

At the heart of the DMI Bachelor of Science degree is the professional demand for graduates who possess technology expertise and strong communication skills for jobs that include news application developers, data and social media analysts, and mobile experience producers. Graduates with excellent communication skills are also in demand at technology companies and in startups, and the new DMI major will prepare students with the conceptual, strategic and practical skills for new and emerging careers.

"I am pleased the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and our Texas State University System Board of Regents values this innovative, new approach to media education," said Cindy Royal, who heads up digital innovation initiatives in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication. "I am confident that this program will result in excellent career opportunities for students who receive a degree in Digital Media Innovation.” 

Royal is also founding director of the media innovation lab at Texas State. 

In addition to taking the standard mass communication core courses, students in the DMI major will be immersed in digital technology with required web design and publishing, advanced social media and analytics, and digital media innovation capstone courses, plus electives in media design, documentaries, multimedia journalism, visual storytelling, coding and data skills for communicators, and mobile media and development.

The School of Journalism and Mass Communication will continue to develop innovative courses that support the degree including current topics and technologies in the areas of drone journalism, data visualization, sensors, virtual reality and more. Students may take up to nine hours in one of the traditional majors, to provide an industry focus, if desired.

“Our Digital Media Innovation degree will soon become a model media education program,” said School of Journalism and Mass Communication Director Judy Oskam. “Dr. Royal and our faculty began working on the curriculum for the DMI major in 2014 while she was working on the Knight Journalism Fellowship at Stanford University, where innovation is ingrained in the culture.” 

Additional information about the new Digital Media Innovation degree can be found at www.masscomm.txstate.edu/degrees-programs/digital-media-innovation.html.