Bettina Fabos

she, her, hers

Professor, Interactive Digital Studies

Director, Fortepan Iowa

Bettina Fabos
Location: 

542 Lang Hall

Phone: 
319 273 5972

Bettina Fabos

she, her, hers

Professor, Interactive Digital Studies

Director, Fortepan Iowa

  Bettina Fabos Personal Website

Bettina joined the faculty in 2002 after completing her Ph.D. in Language, Literacy and Culture at the University of Iowa. At UIowa, Bettina was a Presidential Fellow, a Spencer Foundation Fellow, and the recipient of the Spriestersbach Dissertation Prize. Bettina champions noncommercial digital archiving, the Creative Commons movement, and interactive timelines. Trained in media studies, digital video production and education, her current scholarship revolves around the communication of historical narrative and public memory. Bettina co-founded Fortepan Iowa (https://fortepan.us) in 2015, a UNI-based digital archive of amateur photographs on 20th-century Iowa life that uses a timeline interface to tell the pictorial history of Iowa. Through a Fulbright research grant to Hungary in 2013, she became the project director of an exhaustive interactive timeline on Hungarian history (Proud and Torn: A Visual Memoir of Hungarian History) that uniquely combines photomontage, public history, and graphic memoir to make the complicated story of modern Hungary easily understood (https://proudandtorn.org). Bettina’s first book, Wrong Turn on the Information Superhighway: Education and the Commercialization of the Internet [Teachers College Press, 2005] was a critique of education commercialism in schools and an early call for high quality, noncommercial online content in American classrooms. Bettina co-authors--with UNI colleague Christopher Martin and Ron Becker (of Miami of Ohio)--the leading introduction to mass communication textbook, Media and Culture (Bedford/St. Martin’s). Now in its 12th edition, the textbook is used in mass communication survey classes across the U.S. She also co-authors two additional textbooks, Media Essentials (now in its 5th edition) and Media in Society (2013). Bettina is also active in the Creative Commons movement and has Creative Commons certification.

Education: 

Ph.D., Language, Literacy and Culture, University of Iowa

Teaching Interests: 

As a founding member of UNI's interactive digital studies program, Bettina teaches courses in digital culture, interactive digital communication, digital visualization, and media power and representation. She actively engages her students in community-based projects through the Interactive Digital Studies (IDS) program. Fortepan Iowa (https://fortepan.us) is constantly expanding with the help of UNI’s students who scan, geo-locate, document, and promote the archive. The Diversity is Our Strength project took the Cedar Valley by storm in 2020 with a huge 20x80 foot mural and a corresponding website: https://dios.uni.edu developed by IDS Practicum students. The Good Neighbor Iowa project (https://goodneighboriowa.org,) which also grew out of an IDS Practicum course (2018), continues to educate businesses, schools, daycare centers, and residential communities about alternative, pesticide-free lawn care. And Proud & Torn (https://proudandtorn.org) fully involved students throughout its design and development--in 2017 she took her four-student team to Hungary.

Research Interests: 

Digital archiving, digital culture, public memory, the creative commons, interactive timelines, media & culture.