Book Reviews

Book By: Deanna Forney and Tony Cawthon
Review By: Marie Dahleh
Assistant Dean for Academic Programs
Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Harvard University

 

 

Using Entertainment Media in Student Affairs Teaching and Practice is an excellent reference for anyone considering the use of entertainment media in their work with students.  The extensive references included also will be useful to those with experience using films, television or books with students. The book is organized so that each chapter is self sufficient. The first chapter serves as an introduction to entertainment media use, including the benefits, strategies and research. Each subsequent chapter tackles a specific area. The areas covered include, student development theory, multiculturalism, sexual orientation, sex and gender, leadership, counseling skills and career development. There are extensive references throughout the book related to both the theory and the entertainment media. The final chapter is devoted to lists of resources.

Fornay encourages those who have not used entertainment media in their teaching to consider doing so. She explains how she started using multimedia in her work and how its use appeals to different student learning styles. However, she warns that to guarantee success inclusion of entertainment media “needs to be purposeful” (p. 9). This includes preparing the class for multimedia use and evaluating its effectiveness.

Each subsequent chapter treats an individual subject thus each can be read as stand alone material. Each chapter begins with a discussion of the theoretical basis of the topic. As an example, the chapter on leadership begins with a discussion of what is leadership and how to teach leadership. The discussion is brief (3.5 pages) but still includes numerous references for those who desire further reading. What follows is a discussion of the movies, television, books and music that can be used to help teach leadership skills. Some chapters, but not all, provide a concrete example how a particular movie can be used as part of a class or workshop. All chapters are brief and meant to serve as a motivation and guide for media usage.

I highly recommend this book to anyone developing workshops on student development theory, multiculturalism, sexual orientation, sex and gender, leadership, counseling skills or career development.  The lists of appropriate media sources make it easy to find something for any of the topics discussed.

 


Using Entertainment Media in Student Affairs Teaching and Practice. (2004). Book by Forney, Deanna and Cawthon, Tony (eds.) Review by Marie Dahleh. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 128 pp. ISBN # 0-7879-7926-0.


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