Journalism Education & BRICS: Issues and Challenges for Comparative Assessment

TitleJournalism Education & BRICS: Issues and Challenges for Comparative Assessment
Publication TypeConference Paper
Author(s)Bharthur, S.
Affiliation (1st Author)Central University of Tamil Nadu
Section or WGJournalism Research and Education Section
DateThurs 27 June
Slot CodeJRE T3c
Slot Code (Keyword)JRE T3c
Time of Session14:00-15:30
Session TitleCreative Skills vs. Creative Destruction of Journalism Education Theme V: Generic Studies of Journalism
Submission ID6652

The formation of BRICS and serious intent by the leadership to frequently meet has raised hopes of a new trade and economic bloc that subsume many issues impinging upon each other. Nevertheless, aggregate attempts are made and key documents have emerged that address the cumulative advantages that foreground China and India. The multi-nation study under the aegis of University of Tampere has focused on different aspects of media including journalism education in the broadest sense. No doubt these countries are different with regard to their experiences in nation building and have gone through different political and related struggles to reach their present status. The role and expectations of and from media also differ albeit conforming to the transformative function. On certain “universal” values such as freedom and objectivity, these countries are differently placed. Journalism education is prevalent in BRICS within the macro limitations of higher education systems. While broadly, they can be separated into University and non university system,, certification, validation and acceptance levels of the professional competencies of the graduates and diploma holders are also a subject matter of intense debate. Such debates focus on the acceptance and relevance of journalism education for the media industry. Adherence of education goals to merely satisfy the requirements of media industry is negated in many forums that validate the needs of education as being more relevant to inculcate better societal values, meaningful democratization, ethics and critiquing the media. A key factor in these debates and analysis is curriculum. While educationists strongly believe in curricular reforms to ensure that it is critical, contemporaneous and addressing the needs of the society, the approaches vary from discipline to discipline. A major part of this paper will address how and where curriculum needs and requirements are addressed. By taking India as an example, it will attempt to study comparable attempts in other countries within BRICS. This will be based on assessing through a survey of select institutions to arrive at their rationale and approach. Earlier attempts at doing comparative studies, for example, include UNESCO’s report on Building Sustainable Centres of Excellence in Journalism Education; University Journalism Education,, A global challenge, report to the Center for International Media Assistance; and Journalism Education in MENA by Ibrahim Saleh. These are indicative and not exhaustive. UNESCO, after considerable consultation, has proposed a UNESCO’s model curricula. There have many roundtables by UNESCO to present and gauge responses. This paper will address the response to the model curriculum through secondary sources and collaborators of the project in Brazil, Russia, China and South Africa. While comparative study of issues surrounding curriculum will form the main stay of the paper, its relationship to the media system will be factored to provide a holistic perspective. The work initiated and the data collected for the project will be used to prepare the paper for this session. The contributions by other researchers in BRICS is expected to enhance the scope of this session.

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