Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015
Professor Ioana Literat received her Ph.D. in Communication from the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Southern California (USC). Her dissertation, titled Crowdsourced Art: Activating Creative Participation in Online Spaces, explored her interest in how participation takes place across domains, particularly in creative contexts. Professor Literat's research focuses on online creativity and collaboration and the stakes of digital participation in terms of agency and empowerment.
Her interest in the intersection between participation and digital tools has been fostered in part through her own experience in the classroom. Professor Literat offers, "Teachers play a huge role in empowering and inspiring students. My own teachers cared about what I thought and encouraged me to value my own perspectives and to be confident in my voice as a learner and a thinker. As a student, when you have teachers like that, the possibilities are endless." As a result, her teaching philosophy has also been rooted around these ideas of participation, relevance, and creativity. It stems from the belief that to foster active learning, relevance is important. "When teaching becomes relevant to students, it cultivates the motivation to learn and fosters an environment where students are actively participating and shaping their learning experience," adds Professor Literat.
Prior to attending her Ph.D. program at USC, Professor Literat received her B.A. in Film and Media Culture at Middlebury College and worked as a field coordinator and digital storytelling instructor at The Modern Story, a non-profit, grassroots organization that facilitates media literacy and filmmaking workshops through its partnership with schools in India. Her publications have appeared in peer-reviewed journals, including Communication Theory, International Journal of Communication, and Journal of Media Literacy Education. This semester (Fall 2015), Professor Literat is teaching History of Communication in the CMLTD program. For more information about Professor Literat, please visit her website at www.ioanaliterat.com.