Thursday, April 24, 2008

Study confirms journalism kids do better

As journalism educators, we all believe that exposing kids to all of the trappings of journalism -- writing, design, photography, leadership, critical thinking and self management -- is good for their education. But for a long time, very little empirical evidence existed to back up what we all intuitively knew.

No longer. A new 2008 study by the Newspaper Association of America has reaffirmed the findings of a groundbreaking 1987 study that found that students with journalism experience had better grades and standardized college entrance test scores than students without journalism experience.

Just over 31,000 college students were sampled for the study, roughly 20 percent of whom had experience on their high school newspaper and/or yearbook. As in the 1987 study, the journalism students had statistically significant higher scores in the following areas:
  • High school overall grade point average
  • ACT composite score
  • ACT English score
  • College freshman English grades
  • College freshman grade point average
While skeptics might say that students involved in journalism are probably better students to begin with, the study does "show conclusively that journalism experience in high school translates into better college performance in several key areas, such as the ability to express oneself clearly and reason incisively," according the study's executive summary.

According to the study itself:

"If nothing else, we can conclude that high school newspaper or yearbook staff involvement is an excellent outlet for talented, active and involved students. It also gives them a chance to apply their natural leadership abilities while also exercising their critical thinking, designing and writing skills."

1 comment:

Behonce said...

It would eons before the world takes journalism as a serious subject matter. Regardless of how well we journalist perform, nothing can compare to the traditional glorified professions of doctors, engineers and lawyers.

No two profession is the same, thus neither should be compare to who has more supremacy.

It should be taught to all the younger generation that regardless of profession choice, they must pursue it with dignity and honour, and not just in it for the money.