Dr. Amanda Bright

Academic Professional; Director, Cox Institute Journalism Innovation Lab, Journalism

About: Amanda Bright teaches capstone journalism classes and digital design. She serves as the managing editor for Newsource’s eight digital products and as the instructor and assistant editor for The Oglethorpe Echo. She is also the director of the Journalism Innovation Lab for the James M. Cox Jr. Institute for Journalism Innovation, Management and Leadership.

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Ph.D., Curriculum, Instruction, and Media Technology, Indiana State University
M.A., English with Teacher Certification, Eastern Illinois University
B.S., News-Editorial Journalism, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign


Dr. Bright’s research focuses on digital journalism along with post-secondary curriculum and instruction. Her dissertation, “Adaptation of Journalism Curricula in the Age of Digital Media: A Qualitative Multiple Case Study of Small Programs,” identified both roadblocks and possible action steps for college journalism programs to pivot to digital within their curricular frameworks. Her other research interest is digital storytelling and platforms, particularly as they continue to evolve how news is both crafted and delivered.


Dr. Bright’s primary teaching interests are community journalism, design thinking within the context of journalistic products, emerging digital tools for storytelling, along with web development and design for news organizations. She enjoys juxtaposing the essential ideals of local journalism’s role in society with pragmatic training for journalists through new tools, techniques and strategies.


Prior to joining the Grady College, Dr. Bright spent 15 years in print and online journalism as a reporter, photographer, copy editor/designer, page one editor and news editor. She also spent 10 years teaching journalism and advising high school newspapers and yearbooks, as well as speaking and writing about trends in journalism education. At Eastern Illinois University, Bright taught news writing and design, advised the Warbler yearbook, and taught online courses for journalism advisers. Recently, she was media content coordinator for Indiana State Online, website co-administrator and social media director for the Illinois Journalism Education Association, and education editor for MediaShift.


• Journalism Teacher of the Year, Grady College (2019-2020)

• PhDigital Bootcamp inaugural class, Knight Foundation and Texas State University (2018)

• Kopenhaver Center Fellow, Lillian Lodge Kopenhaver Center for the Advancement of Women in Communication at Florida International University (2017)

• Teaching News Terrifically in the 21st Century competition adjunct faculty winner, AEJMC’s Newspaper & Online News Division (2017)

• Master Journalism Educator, Journalism Education Association (2016)

• Distinguished Secondary Teachers, Northwestern University (2012)

In the News

Cox Institute’s Digital Natives program completes third year

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Podcast: Students embrace community journalism through The Oglethorpe Echo, with Dr. Amanda Bright.

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Podcast: How Grady College will approach being one of nation’s first solutions journalism hubs

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Grady College named one of nation’s first 4 solutions journalism hubs

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Cox International Center welcomes young Georgian journalists for digital media training

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Journalism Innovation Lab Team finishes in top six in nationwide competition

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Cox Institute adds new directors, initiatives to benefit students and industry

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Faculty Profile: Amanda Bright

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A 148-year-old newspaper is the latest recruit to UGA’s journalism school

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“No one wants to be sinking”: How journalism students are reporting on community-driven responses to the pandemic

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Grady College releases documentary on UGA’s desegregation

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Journalism Curriculum Frameworks Shift Toward Skills, Interdisciplinarity

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