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Photograph of Margot Susca

Margot Susca Assistant Professor School of Communication

Ph.D. Mass Communication, Florida State University

M.S. Journalism, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism

B.A. Journalism and Political Science, UMass Amherst

Margot Susca (Ph.D., Florida State University) is an assistant professor in the journalism division whose work operates at the intersection of investigative journalism and critical communications research, focused on corporate media ownership and democracy and guided by the principles of the political economy of media.

Her local newspaper experience informs her work as a scholar, teacher, and mentor. Dr. Susca's first book, an investigation of private investment funds in the U.S. newspaper industry, is under contract with the University of Illinois Press.

She teaches courses in reporting, mass media and society, research design, censorship, and journalism ethics. In November 2020, with doctoral candidate Atika Alkhallouf, she presented a political economic critique of streaming services to the National Communication Association annual meeting. Dr. Susca mentors master's and doctoral students in both the Journalism and Communication Studies divisions of SOC in addition to working with undergraduate students from across the University.

Dr. Susca has worked as a reporter in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Florida, where the Society of Professional Journalists recognized her investigative reporting on high school graduation rates. Prior to joining American University in 2013, Dr. Susca taught as an adjunct faculty member at Florida A&M University and Florida State University, where she earned a doctorate in mass communications. She is a 2002 graduate of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism where she studied the fundamentals of urban reporting, feature writing, and breaking news in the months after the September 11 attacks.

In addition to teaching and research, Dr. Susca ran the weekend Journalism and Digital Storytelling master's program from 2015 to 2020. Since 2016, Dr. Susca has worked as an associate editor at the Investigative Reporting Workshop, a nonprofit newsroom on campus founded and run by Charles Lewis. In that role, she mentors college students and recent graduates in reporting techniques. In Fall 2019, she was chosen as a Maynard 200 fellowship mentor in the Storytelling/Investigative Reporting track. As a media and communications expert, Dr. Susca in 2016 took a role as an assessor with the International Fact Check Network, examining methodology, ownership, staffing, and sourcing of fact check sites wishing to become verified signatories. The IFCN in 2021 was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.


Spring 2021

  • COMM-320 Reporting

  • COMM-409 Journalism Ethics

Fall 2021

  • COMM-100 Understanding Media

  • COMM-320 Reporting