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Charles Cranston

Mass Media
College of Arts and Sciences
1700 SW College Ave
Topeka, KS 66621-1117
Degrees & Certifications
Texas A&M University-Commerce, Bachelor of Arts
Texas A&M University-Commerce, Master of Science
Texas A&M University-Commerce, Doctor of Education
Academic History


Ed.D.,  1982,  Texas A & M University – Commerce, TX;  Interdisciplinary studies in Educational Communication & Technology,  and Mass Communication;  
M.S.,  1972,   Texas A & M University – Commerce, TX;  Journalism,  Graphic Arts,  & Educational Communication & Technology; 
B.A.,  1968,  Texas A & M University – Commerce, TX;  Radio-Television-Film,  & Photojournalism. 

August, 2004 to Present:  Professor,  Department of Mass Media,  College of Arts and Sciences,  Washburn University, Topeka, KS.  
August, 1989 to May, 2003:   Assistant Professor and Associate Professor,  Tenured,  Department of Mass Communication,  College of Fine Arts,  The University of South Dakota.  Vermillion, SD.  
August, 1986  to July, 1989:   Assistant Professor,  Department of Radio-Television,  College of Communication,  Arkansas State University.   Jonesboro, AR. 
August, 1985 to July, 1986:   Director,  Educational Media Center & Assistant Professor,  College of Education,  Educational Communications,  The University of Wyoming.  Laramie, Wyoming. 
January, 1981 to July, 1985:   Director for Instructional Services and Assistant Professor, Division of Instructional Services,   Amarillo College,  Amarillo, TX.
January, 1979 to  January, 1981:  Graduate Assistant Instructor,  Video and Graphic Arts, Division of Educational Communications,  Texas A & M University- Commerce.  Commerce, TX. 
August, 1978 to January, 1979:  Graduate Teaching Fellow,  Department of Radio-Television, Division of Theatre and Speech,  The University of North Texas.  Denton, TX. 
July, 1972  to August 1973:  Assistant Director for Media Services and Instructor In Media Communications,   Arkansas Tech University.  Russellville, AR. 
May,  1971 to July 1972:  Graduate Assistant Instructor in Photography,   Department of Journalism,  Texas A & M University - Commerce.   Commerce,  TX. 

Scholarly Interests/Activities


  • Cranston, C.M.  -  FY2010  -  Project Director  -  Major Research Grant from Washburn University to write, produce and direct a narrative film about the consequences of a second dust bowl era for Kansas and the Midwest.  Completion of the work was in December of 2010.   Grant Award:  $10,000.00. 
  • Cranston, C.M. - FY2006 - Project Director  - Major Research Grant from Washburn University to develop and produce a dramatic narrative film on the life of a little known African American slave named Martha, purchased in Missouri by Thomas Johnson and brought to Kansas in 1856.   This untold story is set in eastern Kansas and utilized actors and talent from across the region and the nation.  Completion of the final work was August 1, 2006.   Grant Award:  $10,000.00.
  • Cranston, C.M. – FY2006 -  Major funding from Newport Film Partners, LLC,  Los Angeles, CA.,  for the completion of a dramatic narrative film on the life of Martha,  a slave purchased in Missouri and brought to Kansas in 1856.  Award:  $36, 850.00. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,   FY1998 – Project Director  - Major research grants and production assistance from The University of South Dakota and South Dakota Public Television to write and produce a dramatic narrative film about how a Native American family survived the depression. Grant Award:  $12,500.00. 
  • Cranston, C.M., FY1994 -  Project Director -  For development and production of a  30-minute documentary,  a 15-minute documentary,  and two 30-second public service announcements about the conservation of groundwater in South Dakota.  Funded through a major grant by the South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources,  1994.    Grant Award:  $75,000.00.  
  • Cranston, C.M.,  FY1991 – Project Director – For development and production of an experimental narrative film about dance and Lakota spiritualism.   Funded by a major research grant from the University of South Dakota.  Grant Award:  $7000.00.  

Service Interests/Activities


Advisor, Washburn Student Film and Video Association Kansas Arts Council

Professional Grants CommitteeJournalism Advisory Committee

Seaman High School,  Topeka 

Fellow,  Center for Kansas Studies

University Film and Video Association 

Kansas Day Women’s Club presentation of   “Through Martha’s Eyes” 

Mass Media Department Curriculum Planning

Advertising Faculty Search Committee – Chair, 2006 

Department Chair Search – 2006/2007

Departmental Technology Needs – 2006/2007

College of Arts and Sciences CFC 

College of Arts and Sciences Resources Committee 

College of Arts and Sciences Curriculum Committee 

Department Curriculum Program Design 2007-2011

Career Accomplishments



  • Cranston, C.M., Writer/Director/Producer,  "High Value",  Published Media.  This film was produced in 2010 and is currently in distribution online via Amazon.Com and is being submitted to a number of film festivals nationwide. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Director,  “Through Martha’s Eyes”,  Published Media.  This film was distributed nationally to PBS through the National Educational Television Association starting in January,  2008.   The distribution coincided with National Black History month in February.   The was distributed in both High Definition and Standard Definition versions to 200 PBS stations throughout the United States and Canada. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Director, “Through Martha’s Eyes”,  Published Media.  KTWU-TV,   Kansas Public Television,  Broadcast premier in February. Prime time schedule. February 18,  2007.    Contractual distribution arrangement with KTWU as sponsoring station.  
  • Cranston, C.M., Director, “Through Martha’s Eyes”,   Public Screening and Panel Presentation for the Topeka Collegiate School.  Topeka, KS.  January 11,  2007.  
  • Cranston, C.M., Director,  “Through Martha’s Eyes”,   Published Media.   Kansas Historical Society,  DVD Collection.   December,  2006.  
  • Cranston, C.M., Director,  “Through Martha’s Eyes”,  Public Screening and Presentation for the Morris County Historical Society.   Council Grove, KS.   November 15, 2006. 
  • Cranston, C.M., Director,  “Through Martha’s Eyes”,  Published Media.  Morris County Historical Society DVD collection.  Council Grove, KS.   November,  2006.
  • Cranston, C.M., Director, “Through Martha’s Eyes”,  Published Media.  Mabee Library DVD collection.  Washburn University.    October,  2006. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Director, “Through Martha’s Eyes”,   Public Screening and Presentation.   Washburn University.   September 18, 2006. 
  • Cranston, C.M., Director,  “Through Martha’s Eyes”,   Private Screening for Invited Guests,  The Screenland Theatre,  Kansas City, MO.   August 11, 2006
  • Cranston, C.M., Writer/Director,  “Story of Family”,   Published Media.  South Dakota Public Television,   Iowa Public Television,   Nebraska Public Television,   Contractual distribution 1998-2003.  Cranston, C.M.,  Writer/Director,  “Story of Family”,  Published Media.  South Dakota State Library System,  permanent collection. 1998.
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer/Director,  “Lakota Vision”,   Published Media.   South Dakota Public Television,   Contractual distribution 1991-1997.
  • Cranston, C.M.,   Paper Presentation.  “A dose-duration-effect model as a reality rating system for television programming”.   Presented at the University Film and Video Association, Bozeman, Montana, Aug 1994. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer/Director, “Lakota Vision”,  Published Media. Short Film,   Northern States Public Television Consortium,  aired in 28 northern states in 1992-93.   
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer/Director,  “Lakota Vision”,  Published Media.  Short Film,   Santa Barbara and greater Los Angeles Cable Television,  February,  1993.
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer/Director, Published Media. Video animation of the Hydrologic Cycle for “Liquid Assets”,  an instructional segment for Under the Microscope,  a 13-part PBS special science series.  Aired nationally on the PBS network via the National Educational Television Association,  1993.
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Published article.  “Application of Learning Style in Media Writing”,   International Journal of Instructional Media,  Vol 19, #3,  Westwood, 1993. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer/Producer/Director,  “Hidden Treasure”,  Published Media.  Thirty-minute documentary about the conservation of groundwater in South Dakota.  Distributed through the State Library System to all cities,  schools and universities in South Dakota,  1993. 
  • Cranston, C.M. Writer/Producer/Director,  “Hidden Treasure”,  Published Media. Thirty-minute documentary. Aired on South Dakota Public Television,  Fall 1993. 
  • Cranston, C.M., Writer/Director,  Published Media.  Public Service TV Spots for Groundwater Education in South Dakota,  aired on commercial TV stations throughout South Dakota,  1993.
  • Cranston, C.M., Writer/Director,  “South Dakota’s Groundwater”,   Published Media.  Fifteen-minute documentary on the conservation strategies for protection of water resources in South Dakota.  This film was produced and distributed to all elementary schools and libraries in the state,  1993-94. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer/Director,  “South Dakota’s Groundwater”,  Published Media.South Dakota Public Television,  1993.  
  • Cranston, C.M., “The Reality of Television Illusion”,  Paper Presentation.   Paper presented at the Popular Culture Association,   San Antonio,   April,  1992.
  • Cranston, C.M.,  “Class Five Injection Wells”,   Published Media.  East Dakota Water Development District and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.   South Dakota and regional distribution by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,  1992. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Director/Editor,   Published Media.  30-second television promos for marketing the University of South Dakota,  Commercial broadcast in South Dakota,  1989-90. 
  • Cranston, C.M. and McCort, B.,  Published Article.  “A learner analysis experiment:  cognitive style versus learning style in undergraduate nursing education”.  Journal of Nursing Education,  24(4):136-8,  April, 1985.  
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer-Producer-Director,    “The Journey”,  Published Media.  A student orientation film for Amarillo College,  National marketing campaign,  1984-1985. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer-Director,  “The Choice is Yours”,  Published Media.  A student recruiting film for Amarillo College,  National recruiting campaign,  1982-1983. 
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer-Producer-Director,  “Death Of An Appaloosa”,  Published Media.  An independently produced 30-minute documentary film about paranormal phenomena.  Syndicated release to commercial and non-commercial TV stations throughout the United States, Tri-Centennial Films,  Dallas and Houston, TX,  1977-1982.
  • Cranston, C.M.,  Writer-Producer-Director,  “Death Of An Appaloosa”,  Published Media.   KERA-TV,  Public Television,  Dallas,  TX.  1976. 
  • Cranston, C.M., Writer-Producer-Director,  “Death Of An Appaloosa”,  Published Media.  Television Premier.  WFAA-TV,   ABC Affiliate Station,  Dallas,  1976.