Renee Hobbs is Professor and Founding Director of the Harrington School of Communication and Media at the University of Rhode Island, and Interim Director of the Graduate Program in Library and Information Studies. Professor Hobbs is one of the nation's leading authorities on media literacy education. Through community and global service and as a leader, researcher, teacher, and advocate, Hobbs has worked to advance the quality of digital and media literacy education in the United States and around the world. She founded the Media Education Lab, whose mission is to improve the quality of media literacy education through research and community service. In the early 1990s, she created the first national teacher education program in media literacy at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Renee Hobbs maintains an active research agenda that examines the intersections of the fields of media studies and education. She has published four books and dozens of articles in scholarly journals in three fields: communication, education and health. She is the founding co-editor of the Journal for Media Literacy Education, an open-access peer reviewed journal. In 2012, she served as a Fellow for the American Library Association Office of Information Technology Policy. As a field-builder, she helped found the Partnership for Media Education, which evolved into the National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE), the national membership organization for media literacy. She has sought and received exemptions on behalf of K-12 educators to protect fair use of copy-protected digital media as part of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), helping advance the benefits of digital learning for all teachers and students.
Renee Hobbs received an Ed.D in Human Development from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, an M.A. in Communication from the University of Michigan, and a B.A. with a double major in English Literature and Film/Video Studies from the University of Michigan.