Areas of Expertise (5)
Dr. Shyles is the go-to source for insight and commentary on the societal shift from traditional media to digital. He can discuss the pitfalls and triumphs of this fundamental change in the communication landscape and what it portends for the future of the news business. Dr. Shyles is also an authority on communication research, the media and politics, and mass media theory.
The Ohio State University: PhD
City University of New York at Brooklyn College: MS
City University of New York at Brooklyn College: BA
Select Accomplishments (5)
Seventeen short subject how-to videos ranging in length from five minutes to over twenty minutes commissioned by artisan-craftsman Harry Havnoonian, custom bike-frame designer and entrepreneur in Media PA. All these videos are accessible online at YouTube and at hhbicycles.net. Some have received over 80,000 “hits” on YouTube.
Executive Producer (professional)
Villanova University Production Awards program to celebrate best student productions of the year. Done on a semester basis with students as crew and talent, featuring student work.
WETA, Ch. 26 Television Independent Production Award (professional)
"Jock of Outrages" cultural documentary.
"Outstanding Young Men of America" (personal)
Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society (personal)
Select Media Appearances (6)
Brian Williams Opens Up About Regaining Viewers’ Trust After Scandal
In an era that may as well have ended with the election of Donald Trump as President, Williams’ journalistic sin seemed more egregious. But that time is past. Now, as Trump rails daily against what he terms “fake news” and offers much of it himself, Williams’ error may recede in some viewers’ minds.
“The American public is often forgetful, and forgiving, but within limits,” says Len Shyles, a communications professor at Villanova University.
Villanova University Professor Looks Back As We Look Ahead To November
CBS' KYW Radio, Philadelphia radio
A Villanova University professor who specializes in political campaigns, is weighing in on the two presumed presidential candidates and their unfavorable numbers.
Communications professor Doctor Len Shyles said the unfavorable ratings of both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump has not been seen in decades.
2014 Academy Awards: Why Hollywood is taking a walk on the dark side
The Christian Science Monitor online
A quick glance at some of this year’s Academy Award-nominated films – “12 Years a Slave,” “Wolf of Wall Street,” “American Hustle,” and “Dallas Buyers Club” – and it’s pretty clear that these days Hollywood is taking a walk on the dark side.
“Some of these films are truly hard on many people’s sensibilities,” says Len Shyles, communications professor at Villanova University in Philadelphia. There are differences, however, between the films, he is quick to point out.
“Dallas,” a film about one man’s struggle to get the medical help AIDS patients needed back in 1980’s Texas, begins with a depressing line-up of “homophobic creeps,” and this environment dominates some 80 percent of the film. But in the end (Spoiler Alert!), the lead character finds redemption in his work to help society’s outcasts, Professor Shyles says.
Vergara v. California: Do state laws protect teacher jobs over students?
The Christian Science Monitor online
A high-profile trial, opening this week in the California Superior Court for Los Angeles County, could set a precedent for school districts across the country that are dealing with ineffective teachers.
“The situation in California is fraught with intransigence on both sides, in part because there are currently few, if any, clear and demonstrably valid operational definitions of what constitutes good teaching,” says Len Shyles, professor of communication at Villanova University in Villanova, Pa.
One reason interested parties may be reluctant to spell out operational guidelines is “because they are afraid to be held to public account," he adds. "It is a fear object for stakeholders, including both administrators and teachers, many of whom may be justifiably wary of a system being used to punish perceived enemies and settle scores among individuals who feel they have been wronged, etc."
JFK 50 years ago: Four days that changed America
The Orange County (CA) Register online
Nearly every person old enough to recall Nov. 22, 1963, remembers how they heard the news – from a co-worker, a teacher, a stranger at a coffee shop.
The Nielsen ratings company estimated that more than 80 percent of television sets in the country were tuned to the funeral Monday. The event became a shared experience for an entire generation.
“This is the highest calling of the medium,” said Leonard Shyles, a professor of media and communication at Villanova University. “They show us what we would see if we were there ourselves. It unifies a cultural perspective for the participants.”
In an era when television was commonly derided as the boob tube, the idiot box, a vast wasteland, the performance was unexpected.
“Television surprised a lot of people in the way that it rose to the occasion,” Butler’s Edgerton said.
Hey, Paul Ryan, you should have embraced your meme
The Washington Post online
Hey, Rep. Paul Ryan, you made a mistake.
Didn’t you know that dissing a meme is a very bad move in the 21st century?
Len Shyles, professor of mass media in Department of Communication at Villanova University, echoes that sentiment.
“It’s normal everyday politics that are now being done in memes,” he said.
Hey, Paul Ryan, get used to it.
Research Grants (2)
"Improving pilot efficiency in the age of the glass cockpit"
US Airforce Office of Scientific Research
Summer grant. Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, Ohio, July 1990.
"Designing effective advertising for enlisted retention"
Army Research Institute
Social and Behavioral Science delivered through the Consortium of Colleges of the Greater Washington Area, 1987.
Select Academic Articles (5)
Shyles, Len; Posner, M.; Lee, Erickson
Annual Meeting, Singapore, May 2016, pp. 91-110.
Rose, Jessica A.; Mackey-Kallis, Susan; Shyles, Len; Barry, Kelly E.; Biagini, Danielle C.; Hart, Colleen M; Jack, Lauren N.
Hundley, Heather; and Shyles, Leonard
Vol 1, pp 108-114, 2001
McCain, Thomas A., Shyles, Leonard, (eds.)
Westport, Connecticut, 1994.