Tag Archives: research

Professor shares research findings on media

Joel Ray/Senior photographer
Michael Huntsberger, assistant professor of mass communication, spoke with students and faculty about community media in the 21st century on March 13 in Riley Hall.
Joel Ray/Senior photographer Michael Huntsberger, assistant professor of mass communication, spoke with students and faculty about community media in the 21st century on March 13 in Riley Hall.

Joel Ray/Senior photographer
Michael Huntsberger, assistant professor of mass communication, spoke with students and faculty about community media in the 21st century on March 13 in Riley Hall.

Media is moving into the future and a Linfield professor has experienced the changes along the way.

Michael Huntsberger, assistant professor of mass communication taught an audience about the three sectors of mass media during  a March 13 lecture in Riley Hall.

Huntsberger was in the communications business long before he was a professor at Linfield College and was able to share firsthand experiences with audience members. His first experience in media was when he started as a freelancer in 1980 in community radio.

After receiving a faculty development grant in fall 2011, Huntsberger began a long term research project studying how community media has changed and evolved to a participatory media in the 21st century.  At the onset of the lecture, Huntsberger explained that the work he has done on the project so far is still in its preliminary stages.

One of the main themes that spread throughout the lecture was how the eight mass media trends have changed and evolved in the 21st century. Over time, these trends have changed to encompass media users more directly. One key change that Huntsberger noted is that users are able to change the flow of news because of technology like the iPhone.

“I decide for me what news is. My definition of news can be completely different from yours,” Huntsberger said.

There are three sectors of mass media: commercial, public service and community. Each of these have certain areas of specialty when it comes to how they broadcast, but as with most media in the 21st century, the lines between the three are starting to blur.

Most of Huntsberger’s research has been in the community media sector. According to Huntsberger, community media is about giving citizens the opportunity to form a connection with each other. A main reason this occurs is because of the core belief that community members volunteer to create their own content.

While Huntsberger is still compiling qualitative data through original case studies, he has been able to draw some initial conclusions about community media.

Through observations and initial research, Huntsberger has found that the service goals of community media strive to provide people with cultural dissemination, language preservation, community development and civic engagement opportunities.

These four opportunities will play a key role in the next stages of his research, especially the preservation of minority languages. He hopes to present his findings in 2014 at a conference in Tokyo.

Various members of the Linfield community noted before and after the lecture that many members of the Department of Mass Communication have given talks this semester.

Senior Nic Miles, a mass communication major, feels he has benefited from being able to learn from the mass communication-based lectures this spring.

“The department is on a roll with lectures. It is refreshing hearing multiple lectures from multiple professors about a topic we study every day,” Miles said.

Julian Adoff/Multimedia editor

Julian Adoff can be reached at linfieldreviewnews@gmail.com.

Faculty practices own style of TED talks

facultycorrect_zps2d7f841e

The first faculty lecture of the spring semester was held Feb. 20 in Riley 201.

When Susan Agre-Kippenhan, dean of faculty, introduced the speakers for the lecture, she took a moment to explain an experiment that the Office of Academic Affairs was doing with faculty lectures, “We are experimenting with our own style of TED faculty talks. The faculty members will each talk for 15 minutes, in alphabetical order.”

In recent years, TED Conference’s TED Talks have caused many to rethink the idea of a lecture. There have been TED Talks from professionals in many fields of academic study.

During this experimental lecture event, three Linfield faculty spoke briefly about an area of study that they have been focusing on recently: Susan Currie Sivek, assistant professor of mass communications, Melissa Jones, assistant professor of nursing, and Yana Weisberg, assistant professor of psychology.

Sivek was the first to speak. She spoke about a recently published article she wrote entitled: “Packing Inspiration: Al Qaeda’s Digital Magazine Inspire in the Self-Radicalization Process.”

During Sivek’s talk, she talked about the fact that Al Qaeda members, like the former Inspire editor Samir Khan, created digital magazines to try to get people to become self-radicals and commit acts of terror.

Susan Currie Sivek, assistant professor of mass communication, was one of three professors to talk during Linfield’s faculty lecture Feb. 20 in Riley 201. She discussed a published article she wrote about Al Qaeda’s digital magazine.


Sivek stated on a slide of her Prezi presentation that “[Inspire] mimics the style of western magazines to normalize participation in terrorism as self-radicals.”

She went on to talk about how the narratives in the magazine articles mirror those of western superheroes and display acts of heroism. The magazine creators also use political slogans from Americans and turn their meanings around. This can have huge impacts.

One observer pointed out, “It is backward that they would use western culture as influences because of the huge amount of hatred they have toward us.”

Sivek ended her talk with a disclaimer that just because an individual reads these magazines will not guarantee that they will be moved to commit acts of terror; at the same time, when addressing a question from a member of the audience, she made it known that it is unknown to find out how many people download and read each issue of Inspire.

The next Linfield faculty member to talk was Jones. Jones presented some initial results of her research for her dissertation.

Jones talked about the generational differences of learning that appear in the online classroom.

At the moment, she is still in the process of data collection and only beginning to analyze what material she does have.

On her presentation she wrote that a reasoning for her research was a “gap in nursing education research related to learning and the diversity of students from a generational perspective.”

This information has become so important because of the trending statistics that nurses with associate degrees are being forced to go back to school to get bachelor’s degrees in nursing.

The return of many to school has created a wide variety of people who take advantage of online learning.

Jones is conducting her study using nurses in an online class that range from ages 26 to 56.

Because of the huge variation of ages in online classes, there are a variety of comfort levels among the students with technology.

Jones shared a statement from one of the older nurses, “I was able to gain a perspective on issues from my (younger) project partner that I would not have thought about on my own, and it helped me grow in tolerance and understanding.”

As her research continues it seems as if the trends of mentorship will evolve in two directions, from elder, more experienced nurses teaching younger nurses techniques for nursing, as well as the younger participants teaching the elders about technology and how to effectively use it both on and off the job.

The last lecture was given by Weisberg. She was interested in finding out if people can change their personalities if they had the desire to do so. Weisberg conducted a study using surveys of 228 college students to see what their goals for change were and how much they did change during the course of eight weeks.

The 228 people surveyed were made up of 114 couples so she was also able to see how one participant’s personality affected that of their partner. The study also allowed Weisberg to talk about what happens when two partners have different personalities.

“I am in a relationship so I thought that it was interesting to see what happens when your partner has a different personality trait than you,” said freshman Lacey Dykgraaf, a member of the audience.

The general trend of the data showed that personality can change during the course of eight weeks. The majority of results that Weisberg shared were ones that had positive changes, but she did share when asked that the changes can certainly go both ways.

This series of lectures inspired by TED Talks was quite informative.

The reception in the crowd was welcoming to the variety of materials that were covered during the hour and a half long event.

“I am addicted to TED Talks, which was my inspiration to come tonight.  I feel that the lecture fulfilled this goal because it opened the listeners up to new ideas,” said freshman Dana Lester, a student at Linfield College.

The mini lecture series offered observers the ability to hear what was going on in a handful of the departments on campus.

Weisberg said at the beginning of her lecture that she was excited to be able to hear what people in other disciplines on campus are researching.

Julian Adoff

Multimedia editor

Julian Adoff can be reached at linfieldreviewnews@gmail.com.

Photo by Julian Adoff

Seniors present research papers, electronic portfolios

Senior Amy Bumatai presents her research project about “Diversity in Student Handbooks in Small Oregon Colleges.” The presentation was given Nov. 27 in Ford Hall.
Kate Straube/Photo editor

Senior Amy Bumatai presents her research project about “Diversity in Student Handbooks in Small Oregon Colleges.” The presentation was given Nov. 27 in Ford Hall.
Kate Straube/Photo editor

The Theatre and Communication Arts Department hosted evening presentations for its senior students Nov. 27 through Nov. 29.

On Nov. 27 the seniors focused on communication arts shared their presentations. Seniors Elie Wiese, Takahiro Ishizawa, Stephanie Raso, Axel Cederberg and Alayna Martin gave professional conference-style presentations, displaying their senior seminar research projects.

Raso presented her research paper titled “An Examination of Gender and Race in Newspaper Coverage of Olympian Gabby Douglas.”

“I found it beneficial to take part in the presentations because it allowed me to have an opportunity to understand what a formal presentation is like,” Raso said. “The presentations were also a great way for me to share what I had worked on throughout the semester and show the implications of my research.”

On Nov. 28, theater students shared their portfolios. This year’s portfolios were made in an electronic format, so they could be easily presented for jobs or during an interview. Seniors Christopher Forrer, Megan Gear, Laura Haspel, Stephanie Mulligan, Paige Keith and McKenna Peterson all shared their portfolios.

“It is a digital portfolio that represents the culmination of my work as a theatre arts major, including course work, productions and other theatrical work outside of the department,” Forrer said. “We presented them in a public setting in the lobby of Ford Hall, trying to simulate a job interview environment or another type of professional presentation.”

The portfolios will be something each student will have for future jobs and interviews.

“This portfolio will be my lifeblood as an aspiring theatre artist, as will the ability to sell myself to theatre companies and graduate schools,” Forrer said. “Having an opportunity in a safe environment to practice this style of presentation and market my work is invaluable to me as a young theatre artist.”

The Nov. 29 presentations featured communication arts and intercultural communication majors. Seniors Crystal Galarza, Xiao Liu, Amy Bumatai, Maria Shwarz and Janelle Davis all presented their research projects in a similar style to the Nov. 27 presentations.

Chris Haddeland

Culture editor