DSC_0052COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Elia Powers is now Dr. Elia Powers thanks to his successful dissertation defense today in Knight Hall.

Powers’ dissertation was entitled, “How Students Access, Filter and Evaluate Digital News: Choices That Shape What They Consume and the Implications for News Literacy Education.”

Members of his dissertation committee included:

  • Assoc. Professor, Ronald Yaros, Journalism – Committee Chair
  • Professor, Susan Moeller, Journalism
  • Asst. Professor, Kalyani Chadha, Journalism
  • Asst. Professor, June Ahn, Info. Sciences/Education
  • Professor, Peter Afflerbach, Education – Dean’s Representative

Powers will be robed this May during Philip Merrill College of Journalism graduation ceremonies at the Dekelboum Concert Hall on the University of Maryland campus. He says he is in the throws of job hunting, but looking forward to taking it easy for awhile!


Dr. Powers celebrated his accomplishment today with (left to right) mother-in-law Jan Gandal, Dissertation Committee Chair Dr. Ron Yaros, Dr. Powers, wife Mara Gandal-Powers and father-in-law Larry Gandal.

More about Elia Powers

Powers’ main research interests are media, news, information and health literacy; journalism pedagogy with a focus on assessment and learning outcomes; audience engagement with digital media; and perceived credibility of news outlets. He has published articles about media literacy pedagogy and nonprofit news audiences in academic journals such as Journal of Media Business Studies and the Journal of Media Literacy Education. He is the winner of the college’s 2013 Graduate All-S.T.A.R. award, given to the top journalism graduate student. As lead instructor for Maryland’s undergraduate media literacy course, he was named a distinguished teaching assistant in 2012 by the Center for Teaching Excellence. As the instructor of record, he teaches news writing, journalism history and media literacy to students at Maryland.

Read his full biography on the PhD Cohort page (scroll down to 2010).