Texas Tech University

Brown Bag Discussions

What is a Brown Bag?

A brown bag lunch or seminar is generally a scholarly exchange session during a lunch break and typically runs an hour. Because attendees bring their lunches packed in brown paper bags, hence the name “brown bag lunch session.” Brown Bag sessions are good opportunities for faculty members, outside speakers and graduate students to discuss their ongoing research, bounce ideas off one another, find potential research collaborators and eventually build the research culture in our college.



Fall 2013

Oct. 7, 2013 | Dr. George Daniels, Associate Professor of Journalism and Assistant Dean for Administration in the College of Communication and Information and Sciences at The University of Alabama
Researching Sports Media When You're NOT A Sports Fan

George Daniels, Ph.D.

George Daniels, Ph.D.

  • Time: Mon. Oct. 7, Noon - 1 p.m.
  • ABSTRACT: When he worked as a line producer in local television news, George Daniels found it challenging to write sports copy for his anchors to read. Learning the difference between the Texas Longhorns and Texas Rangers was a struggle. Now, a decade later, he's become a sports media researcher, by accident. In this talk, you'll get an update on some of his projects involving Southeastern Conference football, ESPN's documentary unit and Britain's Channel 4. See how one can employ qualitative and quantitative methodologies in a research program that bridges the gap between one's teaching and scholarship.

Sept. 16, 2013 | Drs. Kristi Gilmore, Lea Hellmueller, Justin Keene, Andy King, Sun Lee, and Eric Rasmussen
"Parade" of New Research "Pageants"

Spring 2013

April 30, 2013 | Clay Craig, Sherice Gearhart, Dane Kiambi and Patrick Merle
Successful Academic Job Hunting Experiences

  • We will end spring 2013 with a bang. Our 2010 cohort of doctoral students will give the final Brown Bag talk on their successful academic job hunting experiences. These students do us proud by garnering great job offers in prestigious universities: Clay Craig (Coastal Carolina University - Conway/Myrtle Beach), Sherice Gearhart (University of Nebraska – Omaha), Dane Kiambi (University of Nebraska – Lincoln), and Patrick Merle (Florida State University).
    They will share their secret of maintaining research productivity on top of taking classes, teaching classes, writing dissertation, and other responsibilities as a graduate student, tips for preparing job talk and teaching demonstration, and campus interview in general, and strategies for striking a balance between research, teaching, and many other graduate responsibilities.

April 15, 2013 | Rob Peaslee, Ph.D.
From Chi-Squares to Narratives

  • ABSTRACT: Deriving from two sets of triangulated qualitative data collected over several years, this talk outlines in detail a theory of “media conduction.” Media conduction is a term designated to describe simultaneously two concurrent, emergent phenomena: the commodification of space and time; and the mobilizing of co-creative labor within media industries. In the first case, the term engages with the creation and maintenance of boundaries of space and time, wherein discourses of “special” and “ordinary” are realized through the practices of audiences and producers. In the second, “media conduction” uses the metaphor of thermal or electrical conduction to characterize the power-generating activities that increasingly fall between the classic binary of “consumption” and “production” (con-duction).

    This presentation first revisits my dissertation fieldwork, wherein I engaged the relationship between the film and tourism industries through a case study of the Hobbiton film location site in Aotearoa New Zealand. The initial conclusions derived from this work – that mediation inscribes the location with a ritual importance not applicable to identical landforms just feet away – are re-angled here to inform and contextualize more recent field data interrogation and the place and function of media festivals (film festivals, comic-cons, music festivals, and others) within their respective industries.

    I argue that in both cases, the spaces under investigation (the toured film location and the media festival) are imbued with greater value through their connection to media(ted) practices, producers, and persons, and that this value is generated in part by the management of access and the variable permeability of boundaries.

    I thus define media conduction as the transfer of information due to a difference in level of access (from a region of higher access to a region of lower access) through a transmission medium (i.e. a space-time) that simultaneously reifies the value of that access. The usefulness of this phrase, I hope to show, is twofold. On the one hand, it uses the concept of conduction as it is defined with regard to the transfer of heat or electricity to clarify how the transmission of information and access happens along a circuit and produces power. On the other, the phrase provides what I would argue is simultaneously a productive and robust conceptual undercarriage for understanding the interstitial labor of the audience vis-à-vis the production process.

Feb. 15, 2013 | Dr. Chen-Chao Tao, Associate Professor, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan
Complex information, attention, and memory: What eye movements can and cannot tell you and how to deal with (model) them

  • ABSTRACT: The relationship between attention, eye movements and memory is an enduring question, especially in the context of mediated message processing. Eye movements, usually employed as the indicator of attention, are postulated to be positively associated with memory, but empirical studies show disparate results. Two main issues emerge from the current literature. First, scholars have different opinions about which measure of eye movements appropriately represents attention. Most researchers support fixation duration, while some prefer fixation number. Second, research findings reveal that measures of eye movements seem not to be correlated with memory score. Some structural features of mediated messages (e.g., salience) have even better explanatory power than measures of eye movements. This talk reviews current literature and proposes a composite measure encompassing fixation duration and fixation number and argues that separating implicit attentional capture from explicit attentional capture is a possible way to clarify the relationship between attention, eye movements, and memory.