Karen List

Journalism History, Journalism and Law, Journalism Ethics


Ph.D., University of Wisconsin


Karen List, professor, holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri; master’s degrees in journalism and British history from the Pennsylvania State University; and a doctorate in mass communication history and law from the University of Wisconsin Madison. She worked as a reporter and feature writer at the Metro-East Journal in East St. Louis and as editor of The Liberal Arts Review and Penn State International at Penn State.

She taught journalism at Penn State, the University of Wisconsin, the University of Rhode Island, and the University of Missouri before coming to UMass in 1988. List has published several book chapters and articles in many refereed journals, including Journalism Quarterly, Critical Studies in Mass Communication, the Journal of Mass Media Ethics, Journalism Monographs, Journalism History and American Journalism. She won the 1995 Covert Award for the best journalism history article published the previous year. She won teaching awards at the University of Wisconsin and the University of Missouri, the Distinguished Teaching Award at UMass-Amherst(1993), the national Freedom Forum Journalism Teacher of the Year Award (1998) and the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences Teaching Award (2005). She was national president of Kappa Tau Alpha, the journalism/mass communication honor society (1996-98) and won its national Outstanding KTA Advisor Award (2003).

Through the UMass-Amherst Center for Teaching, she has been a Lilly Teaching Fellow, a Hewlett Fellow for the Advancement of Undergraduate Education, a three-time Faculty Associate and Lilly mentor, and recipient of the Teaching and Learning in the Diverse Classroom grant for Journalism (2005-06). She teaches history of American journalism; journalism law; journalism ethics; gender issues in journalism and journalists in the movies. She served as Department Chair for nine years.