Dr Jo Smith

Senior lecturer at the School of English, Film, Theatre, Media Studies, and Art History, Jo teaches 300- and 400-level courses about Māori and the media.

Kāi Tahu, Kāti Māmoe, Waitaha

Jo Smith

What are you currently teaching?

I teach a 300-level course called Māori Media which looks at cinema, television, radio, and new media made by, or representing, Māori. I also teach a 400-level paper called Media, Subjectivity, Identity which looks at how media texts, institutions and practices help shape understandings of selfhood and collective identity.

Courses include:

Tell us about your approach to teaching. What do you enjoy most about teaching at Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington?

I promote critical thinking in my classroom. For me, a good learning outcome is to raise more questions than provide answers. I have a deep belief in the power of collective thinking and regard the teacher/student nexus as a dynamic learning opportunity. Being at university is a rare space for testing out ideas, for stretching thinking and for learning from others. My students help me become a better thinker and help drive my research too.

I enjoy working at the University because of my Media Studies colleagues. I work with some of the most passionate and gifted teachers there are.

What is your best piece of advice to current or prospective students?

There is no such thing as a stupid question and that learning to learn is the greatest possible outcome of university life.

Associate Professor
School of English, Film, Theatre, Media Studies, and Art History