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A meta image of Prof Talan via Apple iPad

Scott Talan

Assistant Professor School of Communication

Scott Talan, MPA, is an assistant professor of Public & Strategic Communication. Talan is an expert in social media and personal branding honed through communications experience in four distinct fields: TV News, Politics, Nonprofits/NGO's and Higher Education. Talan has worked at the United Nations, Harvard University and the March of Dimes.

Talan wrote at ABC News Good Morning America. He's also reported on-air for local TV news stations in several states including California, New Mexico, and Florida while covering politics including the 2000 presidential recount story where he bested other reporters for stories and interviews.

Before news, Talan was as an elected city council member and Mayor of Lafayette, California.

Talan received his Master in Public Administration from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, studied broadcast journalism at Stanford, and completed his BA at the University of California at Davis in Political Science and Economics.

Prior to joining American University Scott was an adjunct faculty member at George Washington and Johns Hopkins. In the summer of 2012 Talan also taught media courses in China at Xiamen University and lectured at Renmin University. He has also guest lectured at Japan's Ritsumeikan University.

Professor Talan serves as a Faculty in Residence living on campus at AU, extending the teaching and learning outside the classroom. He also advised the student run Social Media Club. In 2013, Talan conducted research on the nature of student awareness of current employer recruiting practices and gave a TED-x talk based on this project. He has given the 'Last Lecture' as well on the topic of personal branding. Additionally he has spoken many times at academic conferences on social media best practices in a classroom setting as well as use of other technology and teaching tools.

ISIS Terrorists Use Media Against U.S.
Professors Need Branding Too

Scott served as a legal consultant in a highly watched court case revolving around the impacts and damage to online reputation. In 2016 Talan was awarded with the Jack Child Teaching with Technology award. Talan is a member of the Travelers Century Club having visited more than 100 countries.

Professor Talan was an early leader in using social media in the classroom starting in 2005.

Professor Talan teaches the following courses:
• Understanding Media (included as part of the University College)
• Social Media Strategies and Tactics (in-classroom and online)
• Public Relations Writing
• Personal Branding & Online Identity (course creator)

Harvard University - Master of Public Administration
Stanford University - Broadcast Journalism Certificate
University of California Davis - Bachelors of Arts


Harvard University-Master in Public Administration. University of California (Davis)-Pol Sci & Econ. Stanford University-TV News Certificate.

Favorite Spot on Campus
The Dav. The Bridge. Starbucks.
Favorite Place in Washington DC
#1.AU #2.Ken Cen #3.Filter Coffee House
SOC - School of Communication
McKinley - 242
Contact Info
(202) 885-6461 (Office)

Send email to Scott Talan

For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.
See Also
Video Bio of Prof Talan
Connect with me on LinkedIn
Reviews of Class & Teaching


Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Design and Communication Arts Work

Comm Kid (Student movie trailer video)

SOC Style (Student music video)

Fashion Magazine Capstone (Student project)

Student Advertisement from Understanding Media Class

Media Appearances

ABC News 20/20 on Social Media & Newton Shooting

CNN Story on Social Media & Crimes

Social Media & Presidential Debates Go Well Together-WTOP

AU Expert

Area of Expertise:

Social media, digital media, new media, personal branding and multimedia

Additional Information:

Scott Talan is an expert in social media and personal branding honed through communications experience in four distinct fields: TV News, Politics, Nonprofits/NGO's and Higher Education. He has been a writer, producer, and reporter for numerous media organizations, including ABC News/Good Morning America, and he has taught both undergraduate and graduate courses at George Washington University and Johns Hopkins University.

Media Relations
To request an interview please call AU Media Relations at 202-885-5950 or submit an interview request form.