Gwen Shaffer joined the Department of Journalism & Mass Communication as an assistant professor in January 2012. She currently teaches courses in multimedia journalism and communication law.
Prior to her position at CSULB, Gwen was a postdoctoral researcher in the computer science department at University of California, Irvine. There, she worked on several studies examining how to best incorporate telecommunications policy and economic realities into the Internet architecture. Specifically, the research considered telecommunications company mergers, expanding the application of open internet principles, and wireless device attachment.
Gwen earned a PhD in Mass Media & Communication from Temple University in Philadelphia in 2009. Her dissertation examined the potential for peer-to-peer networking to help bridge the digital divide in the United States. This multi-disciplinary study was grounded in social movement, civic engagement and political economy theories, and was selected by the National Science Foundation for a Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant. More recently, Gwen wrote a book chapter that examines a controversial code of conduct for bloggers, and co-authored a published article that analyzes how urban planners are addressing the use of mobile devices in public spaces, as “ubiquitous connectivity” blurs the line between our physical and virtual spheres.
While pursuing her PhD, Gwen taught courses at both Temple and Drexel universities in news writing, feature writing, freelance reporting, communication theory, public speaking and public policy.
Prior to attending graduate school, Gwen worked as a reporter for more than a dozen years. As a senior writer for the Philadelphia City Paperfrom 1998 to 2001, she filed investigative news features, as well as wrote a weekly column on City Council and local politics. Later, she worked as a staff writer for Philadelphia Weekly, where her cover stories tackled complex policy trends such as the city’s widening wealth disparity and zoning code reform. Gwen’s freelance articles have been published in The New Republic, Columbia Journalism Review, The Nation, E/The Environmental Magazine, Philadelphia magazine, the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Philadelphia Business Journal, and Arrive magazine, among other publications. Previously, Gwen also held several editorial positions at National Public Radio in Washington, D.C.
Office Location: SSPA-008
Office Hours: Wednesdays, 11:30am-2:30pm
JOUR 430 – LAW OF MASS COMMUNICATIONS – Section 01 – TuTh – 12:30-1:45PM – SPA-029C
JOUR 495 – SENIOR SEMINAR – Section 01 – TuTh – 3:30-4:45PM – SPA-006
JOUR 495 – SENIOR SEMINAR – Section 02 – TuTh – 2-3:15PM – SPA-006
For syllabi for these and all Department of Journalism & Mass Communication classes, click here.