Jessica F. Sparks, MA
University of Florida
College of Journalism and Communication
I am a journalist-turned-academic currently working toward a Ph.D. in mass communications at the University of Florida. My areas of interest include open records, open government, college media, news production, media trust and media credibility.
Research and Scholarship
I am currently working on my dissertation, which focuses on techniques to foster media trust among audiences. I have published work on the readability of partisan media and the effect on the pandemic on college media outlets. Additionally, I have an active research agenda focused on open records, media trust, podcasts and social media, as well as college media independence.
I've been teaching at the collegiate level since 2009, when I was a graduate assistant at Ball State University. In 2014, I started working full-time at Savannah State University as an instructor. In 2015, I was hired into a full-time tenure-track position as an assistant professor of journalism. In 2018, I was appointed track coordinator for the journalism concentration in the Department of Journalism and Mass Communications.
In 2020, I started in the Ph.D. program at the University of Florida, where I served as teacher of record for two reporting courses in the Department of Journalism.
I've earned certifications in virtual education from the University of California- Irvine, through Coursera. I have also earned online instructor certifications at Savannah State University and the University of Florida. I am also certified and practiced in conducting study abroad courses through the University System of Georgia.