Joe Mazer

As editor of a nationally recognized journal, Joe Mazer will give Clemson a voice in matters related to the basic communication course.
Image Credit: Clemson University

Joseph Mazer, associate professor and associate chair of Clemson’s communication department, has been elected to a three-year term as editor of the Basic Communication Course Annual, a peer-reviewed journal managed by the National Communication Association. The journal publishes scholarship on topics related to the introductory undergraduate communication course and is distributed nationally to scholars and educators in the communication discipline and to researchers in related fields.

Mazer served as associate editor of the journal from 2010 to 2013 and later joined its editorial board, a position he has held until being named editor. Mazer said he is honored by the appointment and hopes his presence as editor of the journal will further Clemson’s reputation in the field of communication.

“This is an exciting time for the journal; it’s entering its 30th year and I will be the journal’s first editor as it moves to a digital platform,” Mazer said, “but it’s also fulfilling for me personally and important for the department because this appointment will give the department and by extension the university a leading voice in matters related to the basic communication course.”

The basic course in communication is a fixture in curricula at colleges and universities across the country and focuses on teaching fundamental communication theory and skills to undergraduate students. For many students, this course is their first exposure to the discipline, a launching pad to the rest of their general education experience. As such, discussion and research related to the course can have a large impact on a department or curriculum. Mazer said the journal is the “go-to resource” for scholarship related to up-to-date trends and issues related to the basic communication course in general education.

“If a university is looking to make revisions to its basic communication course to remain relevant, its first stop is this journal,” Mazer said. “This appointment will give Clemson a leading national voice in the area of curricular change, particularly as it relates to general education and the introductory communication course.”

Mazer will serve as editor for volumes 30-32 and begin accepting manuscripts later this year. In addition to publishing traditional, data-driven studies, Mazer will seek to emphasize other areas of the journal including its forum section, which provides senior scholars, junior scholars and graduate students an opportunity to engage in conversations about matters pertinent to the introductory course. He hopes to only increase these opportunities for interactivity and dialogue.

Mazer also plans to publish agenda setting reviews and analysis articles that will advance the basic communication course, and he said he will solicit brief articles that offer scale development, replication or other noteworthy data analyses but do not require a full-length manuscript. Scholars can use these reports to highlight a small, meaningful portion of data.

“The journal’s move to a digital platform will likely increase the number of submissions each year and accessibility to the journal across the country and the world, so these new features will come at an opportune time,” Mazer said. “I look forward to promoting the journal’s flexibility in seeking a diverse collection of manuscripts for publication consideration and further establishing the journal as a space for advancing the discipline.”

Mazer’s own scholarly agenda focuses on communication in teaching and learning, new communication technologies/social media, course design and assessment and quantitative research methods.  He is listed among the top 1 percent of prolific scholars in the discipline of communication. Mazer’s research has been recognized through top paper and panel awards from the National Communication Association and Central States Communication Association. His disciplinary leadership roles include service as an editorial board member for 10 disciplinary journals, consulting editor for forums for Communication Education, chair of the NCA Resolutions Committee and past chair of the NCA Instructional Development Division.

A member of the Clemson faculty since 2010, Mazer earned a Ph.D. in Communication Studies from Ohio University, a master’s degree in Communication from Illinois State University, and a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communication from Mansfield University. At Clemson, he also directs the Social Media Listening Center, an interdisciplinary laboratory that seeks to monitor, measure and engage in social media conversations from across the web and provide learning, teaching, research and partnership opportunities to students, faculty, collaborative research partners and external clients.