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Maybe PR Educators Simply Can't Keep Up
By: Doug Bedell
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‘Educators aren’t keeping up with the changes going on around us’ is the lament of public relations and advertising pros in an article in the Journal of Advertising Education by Marlene S. Neill, Ph.D., an assistant professor of journalism, public relations and new media at Baylor University.

Maybe, even, they can’t, the beleaguered PR and adverting folks might have added. But anyway, here are some of the gaps in PR education these days (note that they apply both to courses in advertising and PR):

• Business literacy - PR students should be taught business literacy by reading investment reports and financial statements, and taking quizzes from business and trade publications.

• Math: Students should be required to take a statistics course.

• Online community management: Oh yes, an entirely new component of PR and advertising concerns.

• And how about the new paid media strategies?

Beyond noting these influences, how can courses in PR and advertising be expanded to include today’s digitally-powered influences and leave time for anything else, like the classics that are still important to “well-rounded” educations? Oh dear…

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About the Author
Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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