Faculty Publications

Professors show their academic expertise with summer research and publications

By Brittani Tuttle

Being a professor not only means teaching your knowledge and expertise to the students in your classroom; it also means furthering your academic endeavors through research and publications.

Over the summer, five professors had their work either published or accepted for publication. They are: Dr. Bill Kovarik, Dr. Courtney Bosworth, Dr. Sandra French, Dr. Lisa Baker-Webster and Dr. Twange Kasoma.

photo of Dr. Bill Kovarik

Kovarik has recently completed the second edition of his textbook, “Revolutions In Communication: Media History from Gutenberg to the Digital Age,” published by Bloomsbury Publishing, the same company responsible for publishing the famed “Harry Potter” series.

The first edition received rave reviews and is ranked in Amazon’s Top 100 media studies books of 2015, and is used in college classrooms throughout the country.

Kovarik said the second edition of this text is an expansion upon the four sections covered, which are: printing, imaging, broadcasting, and digital media.

“I didn’t have the textbook I wanted,” said Kovarik, who compiled his own supplementary material over the years online, which eventually became the first edition of the textbook. “It’s a real honor to be able to do this.” Kovarik is hoping to publish a third and fourth edition of the text in the future.

Bosworth, in collaboration with Dr. Duncan Herrington, professor of Marketing in the College of Business and Economics, had a study accepted for publication in the “Journal of Foodservice Business Research”, published by Taylor & Francis. The study’s title is: “The short- and long-run implications of restaurant advertising”.  Bosworth and Herrington also have another study entitled, “Use of the Error Correction Mechanism to Examine the Short- and Long-term Effects of Advertising on Automobile Sales”, which is under review by the Atlantic Marketing Journal.

These studies examine the value and economic impact of advertising in those two markets, and reinforce the idea that a company having to spend money on advertising is not just some throwaway expense, but rather a necessary investment in their product and market.

“That’s the greatest benefit right there,” Bosworth said. “There is a long-term value to advertising.”

photo of Dr. Sandra French
photo of Dr. Lisa Baker Webster

French and Baker-Webster have worked on projects together in the past, but this particular article, “Who’s That Girl? The Misrepresentation of Female Corporate Leaders In Time”, combines both of their respective writing and research strengths into one interesting study.

This study examines the covers of “Time Magazine” from 1923-2014, and how many times women appeared on the cover, whether they were entertainers, politicians, or corporate leaders, in what way they were portrayed, and how they were framed.

While there were many women featured on the cover during that timeline, only six women were corporate leaders: Elizabeth Arden, 1946; Lila Wallace and husband DeWitt Wallace, 1951; Alicia Patterson, 1954; Sheryl Sandberg, 2013; Janet Yellen, 2014; and Mary Barra, 2014.

“It was a great project,” said French. “[But] I don’t think we’re done with it yet […] we’re thinking about doing different things with the data now that we have it.”

photo of Dr. Twange Kasooma

Kasoma’s recent work, entitled “Service Learning and International Internships In Journalism Courses: A Pedagogy of Transformative Citizenship” has been three years in the making, and was published in the “Athens Journal of Mass Media and Communications” over the summer.

This publication analyzes data collected over three years of work during Kasoma’s time at Emory & Henry College in Emory, Virginia. Her goal was to get students out of the classroom, and to help them apply what they have learned in real-world and service situations.

There are three service projects detailed and analyzed in the study: One on her students as they compiled oral histories of senior citizens most of whom are members of the Virginia Creeper Trail Club, which taught her students valuable interviewing, reporting and writing skills; another on working with Habitat for Humanity in Glade Spring, Virginia, to help with the organization’s news function using video news releases and feature writing; and a project with Patrick Henry High School in Emory, Virginia, using a mentor-mentee program to help high school students learn more about newswriting.

This study also examined the efficacy of international journalism internships in Zambia, from students’ perspectives and was later examined to find that the students noted that they became more driven and saw themselves as contributing citizens to their community through their scholar-citizen initiatives.

“[Service learning] helps motivate students to become more involved […] I’m eager to see how this goes,” said Kasoma, who is doing a similar project locally with Radford High School students and students from her COMS 204 course.


Oct 8, 2015
School of Communication