Browsing articles in "Multiplatform Journalism"

Urbino students convey stories through multimedia

Jul 13, 2016   //   by Steve Anderson   //   International Reporting, Multimedia, Multiplatform Journalism, Urbino, Italy  //  No Comments
Steve Anderson is the Ruth D. Bridgeforth Professor of Telecommunications in the School of Media Arts & Design at James Madison University. Prior to entering academe, Anderson was an environmental reporter and weathercaster for KCNC television, a network O&O station in Denver, Colorado. His reporting often involved in-depth examination of local and regional environmental issues and an explanation of the science behind them. He also worked as a news photographer, weathercaster and news reporter in other markets. Steve earned his Ph.D. from the University of Denver. He is ieiMedia's Program Director for Urbino, Italy.

Students in the 2016 Urbino, Italy program worked on some great interactive elements this year, including a before and after photo slider, a set of Google Map placemarks to highlight art installations, an audio clip from an orchestra rehearsal, and some amazing video pieces. 

Here are some of the elements students worked on:

Danica Feuz (James Madison University): An interactive slider showing Urbania, Italy immediately after the WWII bombing contrasted with today. See her story, When Terror Fell from a Friendly Sky, at:

Gabriella Flamini (Rider University): An interactive map containing placemarks of art installations in the countryside around Urbino.  See her story, Thought is Faster Than Action, at:

Bridgette Windell (Colorado State University): Embedded audio of an amateur orchestra. See her story, The Violin Maker of Pesaro, at:

Lea Peck (University of Illinois): Besides winning honors for the best overall multimedia package (text, photos, video), Lea Peck (along with Danica Feuz) created one of the best video stories of the summer about a farmer who went to extreme measures to protect his sheep from wolves. See the story, Fighting Not Dancing with Wolves, at: You can watch her video directly below.

Fighting – Not Dancing – with Wolves – Lea Peck from ieiMedia on Vimeo.

Matt Boselli (Colorado State University): Video story about those unique and beloved Ape (Ah-pay) vehicles you see all over Italy. See his story, Ahhhhhhhh-pay!, at: or watch his video directly below.

BOSELLI_Urbino2016 from ieiMedia on Vimeo.

Hip Hop Performance and Multimedia Journalism in Florence

Nov 17, 2014   //   by Arielle Emmett   //   Florence, Italy, Multiplatform Journalism, Study Abroad  //  No Comments
Arrielle Emmett is a visiting assistant professor and researcher in graduate journalism and transnational education at the University of Hong Kong Journalism and Media Studies Centre. She is a published newspaper and magazine feature writer with credits in Newsweek, The New York Times, Boston Globe, Saturday Review, The American Journalism Review, MIT Technology Review, Visual Communication Quarterly, OMNI, Detroit Free Press, Philadelphia Inquirer, Caixin (Beijing), and Wall Street Journal Market Watch.

ieiMedia's Hip Hop in Florence ProgramWhat happens when American Hip Hop fuses with the vibrant nightlife of Florence, Italy? You get an international vibe, a celebration of black music, dance, and street poetry reborn in Tuscany’s premier city for culture and art.

Hip Hop adds a new vernacular to ieiMedia’s study abroad program. Under the guidance of award-winning journalism and theatre faculty from Winston Salem State, North Carolina Central, and Florida A&M, students will have a dual opportunity this summer to perform hip hop while studying and producing multimedia stories about it in text, video, photography, broadcast, and sound.

Students will learn the story-telling skills of foreign correspondents. And they will wander the piazzas, cobblestone streets, boutiques, and galleries of a city that has more astonishing architecture and art per square meter than any other in the world.

This unique study tour will balance intensive multimedia practice in a specialty track of a student’s choice (print, broadcast, photography and publication design, or video) with free time to research, perform, and savor this magnet of Renaissance culture.

Climb the red-roofed Duomo designed by architect Filippo Brunelleschi, then join us for an excursion to the hilly, sun-drenched vineyards of Tuscany for wine and food tastings. Study Michelangelo’s magnificent statue of David in the Galleria dell’Accademia. Wander to the Piazza della Signoria after a rainstorm, and visit the Uffizi Gallery guarded by Perseus and the Gorgon.

At dusk, take in the nightlife of Florence’s vibrant clubs and dance and report your heart away.

The program–including accommodation, travel insurance, welcome and farewell dinners, program activities and cultural events–costs $4,995 plus airfare. For more details, see our full course description.

For Summer 2015: Six Great Chances to Study Abroad

Oct 3, 2014   //   by Andy Ciofalo   //   International Reporting, Internships, Israel, Istanbul, Turkey, Jerusalem, Israel, Journalism Education, Multimedia, Multiplatform Journalism, Photography & Photojournalism, Scholarships, Study Abroad, Urbino, Italy, Video  //  No Comments
Andy Ciofalo (ieiMedia Founder and President) is professor emeritus of communication/ journalism at Loyola College Maryland, where he arrived in 1983 to found what is now The Communication Department.
Urbino Students

Multimedia students in Urbino, Italy.


“To be a reporter in Istanbul is to drop into the middle of the action.”

“This has been much more than a chance to live in Italy for a month–it’s been a chance to learn and apply valuable information that will make me more equipped for a professional career in media production.”

“I learned that journalism is so much more than disseminating news. It’s linking people from opposite sides of the world through a core human interest.”

These are the voices of ieiMedia’s 2014 students, who traveled this past summer to France, Spain, Italy, Turkey, and Northern Ireland to study multimedia journalism, narrative journalism, social media, international reporting, and creative writing. They produced videos, made photos, and reported and wrote about everything from flamenco and truffles to Syrian women in Turkey and the tension in Hebron.

Now we’re looking forward to next summer’s courses and to a new crop of equally inspired–and inspiring–students. And we’re hoping that your students, and perhaps you, will join us.

For summer 2015, we offer six international learning adventures:

In addition, we are proud to announce ieiMedia’s James Foley Memorial Scholarship in International Photojournalism in honor of the journalist tragically executed while covering the war in Syria. The winner of the $5,000 scholarship will attend our program in Urbino, Italy, to study with our award-winning photography faculty, including Pulitzer prize winner Dennis Chamberlin and former White House photographer Susan Biddle.

Keep in mind that our application deadline is February 1, 2015. Applications are considered on a rolling basis, and will close as each program is filled. Apply early to secure a spot!

Please share this information with your students, colleagues, and friends.

Re-thinking Journalism and J-Education

Jun 22, 2012   //   by Andy Ciofalo   //   Journalism Education, Multiplatform Journalism  //  2 Comments
Andy Ciofalo (ieiMedia Founder and President) is professor emeritus of communication/ journalism at Loyola College Maryland, where he arrived in 1983 to found what is now The Communication Department.

At a university event in 2010 honoring retiring faculty members many nice things were said about me by my colleagues and former students. But I never expected to be described as a “maverick.” My online dictionary offers three meanings for that word:

  1. Maybe they saw me as an “unbranded calf” slogging my way though an academic career un-vetted by a Ph.D.
  2. Or maybe I was like an armor penetrating “guided missile gone awry” hammering at the preconceived notions limiting the range of communication education.
  3. Or maybe they meant I was “a lone dissenter who takes an independent stand apart from his or her associates.”

This last one rings sort of true—except that I always felt my associates valued and encouraged my innovative approaches to teaching, learning and curriculum design.

But the one comment, describing me as an “innovation junkie,” really got me thinking. Did it all boil down to the chemical rush commonly associated with such activities as ingesting alien substances or bungee jumping or playing an all-in hand in Texas hold-em?

I admit that it requires a certain “driven personality” to overcome traditional resistance to changes aimed at keeping the communications discipline ahead of an ever-changing curve. In order to keep our students current with the latest ideas and technologies, all of us in communications are constantly re-thinking our curriculum, our teaching and our goals. And it is in the spirit of “re-thinking” that I offer these reflections.

Those of us in communication have been and are in for a wild ride. No academic discipline or professional field has been subject to more change or affected more people in the last 10 years as communication has. In fact, it is the many facets of communication that is driving all political and social discourse in our country today on talk radio, in print media, in TV and film, on the internet: twittering, blogging, and networking.

That places a huge burden on us—whether we are in journalism, advertising, public relations or visual media—to identify our own values and remain true to them within the context of the common good. Professional codes of ethics and conduct were relevant when we could practice our craft in a safe corporate environment under the watchful eyes of litigators. That world is rapidly disappearing. My belief that journalism is more a “calling” than a “profession” is a better fit for a media defined by loose networks of individuals unfettered by corporate culture.

More and more university communications departments (the latest being the master’s program at Columbia University) are abandoning the silo approach to media education in order to graduate students literate in diverse technologies. And similarly communication disciplines need to defy traditional boundaries, e.g. public relations and journalism should be approached as being on the opposite ends of the same information continuum. The diminishing number of daily newspapers and circulation losses not only affects the job opportunities for journalists, but also those in the advertising and public relations fields which are symbiotically linked to the news media.

However, there is a bright side for those entering the field:

  • Weekly newspapers are doing better than the dailies.
  • New forms of hyper local online journalism are in accelerated formation.
  • Radio (including satellite) and cable TV still generate media jobs.
  • Targeted internet sites and webzines covering all fields are proliferating and offer many opportunities to independent media operatives.
  • Non-profit corporations are driving new employment opportunities in public relations for graduates with social media skills .
  • The emergence of the free lance or backpack journalist with multimedia skills is in its infancy and growing.

The curriculum at Loyola University Maryland anticipated that change is the only constant in communications; it Read more >>

Must-Have Tools for Multimedia Journalists

Apr 18, 2012   //   by Dennis Chamberlin   //   Multimedia, Multiplatform Journalism, Photography & Photojournalism, Urbino, Italy, Video  //  No Comments
Dennis Chamberlin is an assistant professor of journalism at Iowa State University and a Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist. He has more than 20 years experience as a newspaper and magazine photojournalist and has worked for publications such as TIME, The New York Times Sunday Magazine and National Geographic.

Today’s young journalists need a broader set of skills than was required a couple of decades ago. Now that publishing has become a multi-platform activity, journalism students who will soon enter the job market need to know how to report, write, shoot photographs, and create basic video packages. And to do that, they need to own and become familiar with a few critical items of gear.

While it’s true that smart phones can record audio, photos, and video, they can’t produce the quality expected by serious publishers. The essential tool kit for today’s multimedia reporter should include these tools:

  • Laptop computer
  • Digital camera / video camera
  • Audio recorder

Let’s consider these one at a time.


This is the first tool you will need to work as a “backpack” journalist. Your laptop should have enough memory to allow you to do basic photo, audio, and video editing. A computer with 4 to 8GB of RAM and a hard drive of 500GB should be enough for most needs.


The latest digital SLR cameras are not only good tools for still photography but they can also be used to shoot great quality HD video. Your basic lenses should include a wide angle, or wide angle zooms lens, plus a a normal lens with f/2.0 or wider aperture.

A good entry level kit to shoot both stills and video is the Nikon 3100 with 18-55mm lens, which costs around $550. A longer lens is sometimes useful, and the same camera kit but with an additional telephoto zoom lens will definitely be worth the investment. Canon’s entry level camera, a Rebel T3, starts at $450 and also shoots good quality HD video.

One of the weaknesses of the entry-level digital SLR cameras is that they do not have auxiliary mic inputs in addition to their built-in microphones. If you can shoot an interview close to your subject, in a quiet location, the built-in mic can often produce decent sound. However, to capture broadcast quality sound in less than ideal situations it is better to use auxiliary microphones or a separate audio recorder that you can place close to your source.

If you’re seriously committed to multimedia work, you should consider purchasing a camera that is a step or two higher than those listed above. My students who are “bitten” by the multimedia bug often move up to a Nikon D700 or a Canon 60D within a year of buying their first camera. These cameras will give you a bit more flexibility and are sturdier cameras that feel good in your hand.

If you cannot afford a DSLR kit, consider the high-end point-n-shoots and 4/3 format cameras. These are sometimes a bit less expensive than the cameras mentioned above and are smaller and easier to carry as you explore the world for stories. I’ll write about them in a future post.


Although there are quite a few recorders in the $200 to $500 range that meet the specifications needed for a multimedia journalist there is one recorder available for just over $100 that is useful for interviews, slideshow audio, and separate audio tracks for video: the Zoom H2. This recorder fits into a pocket and after a bit of practice you can easily produce high quality audio for your multimedia packages.

There are digital audio recorders available for under $100, but I have yet to see any that record at a level that is usable for anything other than taking notes. A lot of beginning reporters go for the low quality recorder that cost $50 to $70, but if they had spent a bit more money they could have purchased a better and more versatile tool.

Lastly, to get the most out of your laptop, camera, and audio recorder, make sure to put these essential supporting accessories in your multimedia kit:

  • spare memory cards
  • spare batteries
  • headphones/earbuds

What Editors Look for in New Hires

Nov 21, 2011   //   by Bob Marshall   //   Blogging, Jobs, Multiplatform Journalism, Resources  //  No Comments
Bob Marshall is the veteran reporter, feature writer and columnist whose work at The Times-Picayune has earned two Pulitzer Prizes. He was co-author of the series “Oceans of Trouble: Are the World’s Fisheries Doomed?” which won the 1997 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service and the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Public Service from the Society of Professional Journalists.

When aspiring journalists discover I’ve been in the news business for 40 years – and still have a job at a newspaper – they pepper me with dozens of questions, one of which is a constant:  What are editors looking for in new hires?

I now have the perfect answer, thanks to this job listing on,  which is Advance Publications’ (Newhouse newspapers) Web site for their Michigan properties.

I’d suggest directors of journalism schools across the nation be familiar with the prerequisites listed here. Editors see it as the template for our future. (
Reporter (All Topics) – MLive Media Group, Grand Rapids, Michigan
Job Details

The Reporter will report and produce news stories for various platforms, and act as a statewide expert and discussion leader on high-value topics, meeting audience demand for immediacy, depth and engagement.
·         Degree in Journalism or Communications or related field required
·         Minimum of 2 years of journalism experience with a proven ability in reporting and writing required
·         Proven experience building, maintaining and engaging an active audience
·         Ability to work independently under deadline pressure and prioritize tasks appropriately
·         Demonstrated reporting, writing and organizational skills
·         Solid understanding of news writing, journalistic ethics and story structure
·         Experience with search engine optimization practices
·         Experience with using social media to source and promote content a plus
·         Demonstrated capability in capitalizing on high-value topics by engaging audiences in frequency and urgency
·         Understanding of the methods and tools used to deliver content across a variety of platforms such as Moveable Type CMS, SCC Budgeting and Archiving System, Smartphones
·         Understanding imperatives of multiple platforms – print, mobile, Internet, etc.
·         Mastery of social media and digital interaction
·         Proven ability to utilize a broad set of tools to tell stories and engage the audience
·         Ability to leverage relationships with sources to deliver content that differentiates the organization from competitors
·         Ability to work independently and remotely

Duties and Responsibilities, work schedules and/or location may change based on evolving business needs
1.       Gather information and write journalistically sound news elements for use in all media platforms, existing and future, that is: balanced and factual; timely and topical; and, well –sourced and contextually correct
2.       Learn and employ all techniques for effective digital “beat-blogging” reporting across all platforms
3.       Post frequent and incrementally posting throughout the day
4.       Engage in story aggregation and topical link-posting
5.       Monitor and engage in reader comment streams on MLive impact pages
6.       Elevate comments into new posts when appropriate
7.       Interact on social media platforms, with story shares, objective commentary, promoting your topic and news organization’s content initiatives
8.       Effectively employ various means for monitoring audience interest and competitors’ posting on your topic, including setting up Google alerts, Twitter and RSS feeds
9.       Maintain operational communication with editor and, when applicable, production center,
10.   Understand and use hardware, software and cloud-based equipment and systems for direct-to-web production and engagement, including but not limited to:
·         a posting photographs and short videos to the web and any internal production systems
·         remote web reporting, using laptops and smart phones
11.   Understand and use our news organization’s audience traffic tracking systems and analytical reports
12.   Meet production deadlines

Extensive computer use required. Some travel required. Ability to work flexible work schedules, including nights, weekends and holidays, as needed

The Company is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, physical or mental impairment, or any other category protected under federal, state or local law

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Students Say...

The experience of overseas reporting at a small renaissance Italian town like Urbino, has been exhilarating. Experiencing its sights and sounds, gaining new journalistic skills and working with local translators. What more can one ask for?
by Kenneth Foo, Nanyang Technological University, The Urbino Project 2011