Graduate Spotlight: George Pearson

George Pearson After living in England, Scotland, the Isles of Scilly, Africa and Asia, George Pearson decided it was time to come to the United States. Everyone has a different story on the choice to study at Ohio State. For Pearson, it was his brother who said, “Have you seen the Ohio State band? You have to go there!”

Now finishing his fifth year, Pearson has completed many research studies and has taught several classes. He finished his undergraduate studies in 2011, graduating from the University of Glasgow in the United Kingdom. He then began working for his local government in online communications. At the time, his work consisted of monitoring press releases, design and strategies for communicating with the public. Then, one day while he was watching television, he began thinking about the many ways people find information online, what sources they trust and how quickly the media industry was changing. Now, these are the topics his research revolves around.

Pearson has completed four journal articles, three of which used experimental data and the other being broad theory based. One of his publications was a required article to read on a class syllabus in Australia. His favorite research was a survey sent out in 2016 during the presidential election. In the survey, he asked participants how often they pay attention to the sources of their news. In the end, he found that people said it was important to check the sources their news came from but rarely checked the source when prompted with news articles. Along with this, he asked participants where they were getting their information. He found that those who found their information on social media were more likely to believe false information.

George Pearson teaching

On top of the research, Pearson also teaches communication and journalism classes. His favorite class to teach is COMM 3163, Communication Industry Research Methods. He believes teaching is most fun when people are able to go out and get hands-on experience while simultaneously learning from the book in a classroom setting. With this, they are able to learn how to interpret and conduct research in an appropriate way. His second favorite class to teach is media writing and editing. He loves reading the great stories students find around campus and the way they write about them.

Pearson hopes to stay in academia after graduation.

Article by student Lexi Turner