The new model of journalism education at the International University of Information Technology is adapted to the multimedia information environment because all media is moving toward digitalization.
Journalism today is becoming super-mobile and high-tech. Therefore, the International Information Technology University is the first and only university in Kazakhstan to offer a completely new curriculum focused on digital media, social networks, blogging, and social media marketing. The innovation of the educational program “Digital Journalism” consists in combining the basic journalistic profession with other specializations. In digital journalism, you don’t just need to know how to write. You have to be a big data analyst, director, cameraman, sound engineer, editor, and designer and know the basics of programming and animation. It means to the standard duties of a journalist a wide range of special knowledge is added, such as website development and web – design, motion design, infographics, programming, mobile applications, SEO – promotion, usability, digital marketing, 3D – animation programs, data visualization, etc.
Traditionally journalists were “humanists”, but today such areas as big data analysis in the Internet space and mathematical modelling are relevant for journalism. It should be understood how to extract the necessary information from a big stream of fake news, build the image of any company or person, and build information flows more effectively, including in social networks, so that the consumer receives the information they need.
An obligatory professional requirement for the work of a journalist is the possession of digital equipment, the latest technologies for gathering and transmitting information, knowledge of the requirements of information security, and the ability to produce an information product on various media platforms.
It is important that the educational program “Digital Journalism” at the IITU was developed considering the wishes of the heads of the leading mass media in the Republic of Kazakhstan. The best foreign professors are involved in teaching it. The study is conducted in English, Kazakh, and Russian. Each student can study for a year or a semester at foreign partner universities of the IITU. Together, we have developed a clear list of skills a journalist must have to work in domestic and foreign media structures. This shows the real connection between our faculty and employers; therefore, our graduates are in demand both in the media and PR departments, marketing, and advertising structures.
The educational program “Digital Journalism” is new, relevant, and timely, demonstrating the training of highly qualified specialists in demand in the global media market.