Journalism and Mass Communication subject group
News: An interview with the program director Prof. Dr. Michael Brüggemann on the program’s understanding of journalism and another interview with Professor Emeritus Dr. Irene Neverla on the history of the subject group.
Since its inception in 1990, the Institute of Journalism and Communication Studies has been studying public communication and current changes, with a special focus on the role of journalism in society. Currently, we are looking at the role of journalism in the world of digital media, where new forms of design and interactivity have changed the job profile of journalists. Among the new challenges are how to treat globalization and global threats like climate change. The extreme complexity of our society, including its tendency to splinter, presents a particular challenge to journalists.
In these changing and innovative times, our Institute remains committed to its mission: to enable students to become quality journalists. We see quality journalism as an ideal for which to strive; a motivation for ambitious, detailed, and, simply put, better journalism that is more than just a mouthpiece for others. Its primary goal is to offer its to provide its audience with greater understanding and orientation by analyzing relevance, critically reflecting upon sources, and interpreting—all under the conditions of digitalization and in light of the challenges presented by new forms of information and Internet communication.
Education in this field is based on the principle of professionalization through science and scholarship. We see academic findings in journalism and mass communication as useful and beneficial in professional journalism: for example, empirically confirmed findings about audiences and users and their user preferences, or about possible desired or undesired effects of journalistic content on its audience.
Our program offers students an in-depth discussion of concepts and empirical findings in the field of mass communication and a solid understanding of the methods of social scientific research. This knowledge allows students to analyze data and statistics and to evaluate professional opinions. They foster students’ ability to reflect and and motivate them to pursue their own research, for example in their master’s thesis, which takes 2 years to complete and leads to to an MA. The MA program’s scholarly approach serves as a basis for an academic career or for a career in practical journalism. The program director is Prof. Dr. Michael Brüggemann. Other professors in the journalism and mass communication subject group are Prof. Dr. Katharina Kleinen-von Königslöw, Prof. Dr. Volker Lilienthal and Prof. Dr. Irene Neverla (professor emeritus). The senior professor is Prof. Dr. Horst Pöttker (formerly Technische Universität Dortmund).
Research projects carried out by the subject group are described in detail in the Research section.