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Accreditation Plans and Metrics

MCJR Mission Statement

The Department of Mass Communications and Journalism develops academic and professional competence in undergraduate and graduate students who are interested in media careers through programs of teaching, research and service that combine strong liberal arts and science studies with professional preparation. The department strives to produce graduates that meet national standards of performance on various media platforms and content in on content gathering, editing, reporting, interpreting, and disseminating information across the various platforms that shape public discourse.

(Adopted 2003; briefly revised 2016; briefly revised 2023)

MCJR Strategic Plan

The Department of Mass Communications and Journalism adheres to the University's Strategic Plan. Our commitment to this alignment ensures that our departmental objectives and actions are in harmony with the overarching goals and vision of the university. Several of the strategic themes of the university’s plan also coincide with the principles of The Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC), like diversity and inclusion, student success, faculty development. Thus, the department is assisting the university in reaching its goals while also adhering to ACEJMC guiding principles.  

Below are six specific university strategies that we may feasibly address at the departmental level, at least in part.

  • Strategy 1.1: Develop and implement a data-driven cross-institutional approach to improve student retention, graduation rate, and career placement.  
  • Strategy: 1.5: Increase the number of programs, services, and outreach opportunities to reflect the educational needs and demographics of the Hampton Roads Region and Prospective Areas  
  • Strategy: 1.6: Evaluate existing inventory of certificate and program offerings for long-term sustainability and viability based on student enrollment and degrees awarded.   
  • Strategy 2.1: Develop and implement a comprehensive faculty development plan, which reduces faculty teaching loads to enhance teaching excellence, student advising, and scholarly research and publications.    
  • Strategy 3.3: Promote cultural and ethnic diversity by increasing recruitment of non-traditional and international students and through cultural immersion activities, and community engagement.  
  • Strategy 4.2: Increase philanthropic giving to NSU by engaging business and philanthropic communities in an aggressive campaign to solicit support for NSU based on enhanced offerings in key workforce preparation areas such as cybersecurity, nursing, and education.

Since the adoption of the University’s plan in 2019, the university and the department have made progress with these stated goals. Per 1.1, the department now has two full-time professional advisors. The university has also strengthened Career Services efforts and our department has worked more closely with Career Services. Both these efforts assist with retention, graduation, and career placement. Per 1.5, the University and the department continue outreach efforts with our Newport News Public Schools Dual Enrollment program. Per 1.6, the department has integrated certificate programs into its courses. As part of our web design course, students have earned a certificate with media-related companies. Per 2.1, the University has increased efforts to provide access to teaching enhancement programs and funding for research. Per 3.3, the department recently offered a study-abroad course in London, and students have also been exposed to cultural diversity programs on campus and with the department activities. Lastly, per 4.2, attempts have been made to seek funding from a major media company to support the next steps in the development of the MCJR Media Center. 

(Adopted in 2019; revised in 2023)

MCJR Diversity and Inclusiveness Plan

In the Department of Mass Communications and Journalism at Norfolk State University, we are committed to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusiveness. As an academic department at an Historically Black College and University (HBCU), we recognize the unique responsibility that we have in providing an inclusive and empowering educational environment that prepares our students for success in a global society. Our diversity and inclusiveness plan outlines the following expectations: 

  • 1. Inclusive Curriculum: Our curriculum will be designed to promote a deep understanding of diverse issues and perspectives. We will integrate diverse voices and perspectives into our course content, ensuring our students develop the skills to navigate and engage with a variety of viewpoints. 
  • 2. Global Perspective: We will emphasize the significance and impact of mass communications in a global society. Our curriculum will expose students to media practices from around the world and the role of media in shaping perceptions and narratives on a global scale. 
  • 3. Diverse Faculty and Professional Staff: We are committed to building a diverse faculty and professional staff, especially from underrepresented groups. We will actively recruit, retain, and support talented individuals from underrepresented backgrounds to ensure a broad range of perspectives.                                                                                                                 
  • 4. Diverse Student Population: We are also committed to building a diverse student body, especially in terms of underrepresented groups. We will work towards increasing the enrollment of students from diverse backgrounds. We strive to prepare students underrepresented groups for their rightful place in the media industry. 
  • 5. Inclusive and Supportive Climate: We provide a safe, respectful, and inclusive environment for all members of our community. We will actively promote a climate free from harassment and discrimination by implementing clear policies and procedures, fostering open dialogue, and offering resources for reporting incidents and seeking support. 

By implementing this comprehensive plan, environment and the educational experience of our students, nurture a vibrant and inclusive learning environment, and prepare our graduates to excel as informed and ethical communicators in a diverse and interconnected world. 

(Adopted in 2010; revised in 2023)

MCJR Assessment Plan  

The Department of Communications and Journalism at Norfolk State University is committed to ensuring that students develop the necessary values and competencies to excel in the field of communications. Our assessment plan addresses the following 10 values and competencies set forth by The Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC): 

  1. apply the principles and laws of freedom of speech and press, in a global context, and for the country in which the institution that invites ACEJMC is located; 

  2. demonstrate an understanding of the multicultural history and role of professionals and institutions in shaping communications; 

  3. demonstrate culturally proficient communication that empowers those traditionally disenfranchised in society, especially as grounded in race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation and ability, domestically and globally, across communication and media contexts; 

  4. present images and information effectively and creatively, using appropriate tools and technologies; 

  5. write correctly and clearly in forms and styles appropriate for the communications professions, audiences and purposes they serve; 

  6. demonstrate an understanding of professional ethical principles and work ethically in pursuit of truth, accuracy, fairness and diversity; 

  7. apply critical thinking skills in conducting research and evaluating information by methods appropriate to the communications professions in which they work; 

  8. effectively and correctly apply basic numerical and statistical concepts; 

  9. critically evaluate their own work and that of others for accuracy and fairness, clarity, appropriate style and grammatical correctness; 

  10. apply tools and technologies appropriate for the communications professions in which they work. 

The 10 values and competencies are assessed in groups, two or three per semester, resulting in all 10 values and competencies being assessed within a two-year period. The assessment includes both direct and indirect measures. Based on the assessment results course content and/or instructional methods are adjusted to better ensure that students acquire the 10 values and competencies.  

(Adopted in 2019; revised in 2023)

Retention & Graduation Trends

Graduation rate data is based on the six-year standard cohort definition. The retention rate is calculated using the number of freshman returning the next fall term regardless of level. The office of institutional research collects and analyzes graduation and retention rate data for the university including Mass Communications and Journalism.

August, 2023

  • Graduation Rate Trends 
    • JRN = 88%   Mass Comm. = 58%  NSU = 40%
  • Retention Rate
    • JRN = 100%   Mass Comm. = 70%  NSU = 72%”

August, 2022

  • Graduation Rate Trends 
    • JRN = 25%   Mass Comm. = 21%  NSU = 37%
  • Retention Rate
    • JRN = NA   Mass Comm. = 61%  NSU = 66%”

As reported by Institutional Research, Norfolk State University.