Best of the Web 2016 Competition

I want to thank everyone in the division for another great Best of the Web competition this year. We received 32 entries and will be giving out 10 awards at this year’s conference in Minneapolis. The quality of design and technological capability were phenomenal in both the web and app categories. We will be presenting the awards and showing the winning entries on Thursday, August 4 and I hope to see a good turn out in support from our division!

What is Best of the Web?

The Best of the Web competition is an annual web and app design contest offered in collaboration between the Communication Technology and Visual Communication Divisions of the Association for Education in Journalism & Mass Communication (AEJMC). Web or app entries submitted to this competition must advance education or research in journalism and/or mass communication. The contest is open to faculty and students who work for or attend an institution that is accredited by AEJMC, or are current members of AEJMC.

The competition consists of four categories: Individual/Team/Single class designation for web and app, and Multiple class/Institution designation for web and app. Web and app design professionals and academics with a background in web and app design technology are responsible for judging the competition. Judging primarily focuses on the design, presentation and technological components of the project.

And the Awards Go To…

Category 1: Individual/Team/Single Class website

  1. http://thenewshouse.syr.edu/dome35/Greg Munno, Syracuse University
  2. http://cornerstonefoundationbelize.org/Nicole Triche, Elon University
  3. http://thepersonalbrandingtoolkit.comHeather Fullenkamp, Ball State University

Category 2: Individual/Team/Single Class app

  1. The Slice SU, Seth Gitner, Syracuse University
  2. The Slice SU_Recipe Box, Seth Gitner, Syracuse University
  3. Ball State University Athletics, Megan McNames, Ball State University

Category 3: Multiple Class/Institution website

  1. http://myhousingmatters.com Steve Davis, Syracuse University
  2. http://familylifeproject.syr.edu Renée Stevens, Syracuse University
  3. http://memphismirror.com Robert Byrd, University of Memphis

Category 4: Multiple Class/Institution app

  1. http://bridgingselma.com/virtual-reality Joel Beeson, West Virginia University and Morgan State University

Examples of This Year’s Winners

The My Housing Matters project by Steve Davis at Syracuse University is an excellent example of web design that not only advances education and research in mass communication, but also engages students in social issues that matter in the community. This project is a collaboration between CNY Fair Housing and the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications that shares honest and personal accounts of residents and focuses on the people who work at local agencies to “personalize the numbers, charts, maps and indexes. The project is about residents, decision-makers and policy-makers, those who use the system and who make it run, often up against long odds — and sometimes, in the face of scorn.”

The Fractured Tour project by Joel Beeson at West Virginia University and Morgan State University is an engaging “experiment in a journalistic, immersive, self-guided documentary ‘tour’ of the economic, racial and ideological divides in Selma, Alabama.” The app uses virtual reality to immerse the viewer in a storied environment to engage with issues on race and social justice from a first-person perspective. It pushes journalism education in a new direction by asking students to rethink storytelling conventions and how to approach their work environments.

This year’s competition received many great quality submissions. Please be sure to attend our panel on the first day of the conference to see all of the amazing award winners.

See you in Minneapolis!

~Cindy S. Vincent, Best of the Web Chair

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