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Unit (2020)

Information on this page, including unit offerings, is from the 2020 academic year.

Introduction to Social Media (PRO101)

Organisational Unit Creative Media, Arts and Design
Credit Points 3
Description This unit introduces social media and their application in communication management, web communications and public relations. Students learn about social media and websites as platforms for engaging users and their role in media relations and other communication activity. Students develop skills in online writing for a variety of audiences and in campaign planning, incorporating social media platforms such as, for example, blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Students also learn about the theoretical implications of the network society and online communications.
Unit Learning Outcomes On successful completion of the unit you should have refined your grasp of:
1A: The theoretical approaches that inform the critical analysis and application of social media platforms to public relations practice.
1B: The centrality of ethics to socially valuable and responsible public relations activities in the online public sphere.
1C: The important role that pubic relations plays in the development and application of social and cultural communication discourse in the online public sphere.

You should also have honed your capacity to:
2A: Critically evaluate the rhetorical and discursive effects and the ethical implications of social media within the practice of public relations in the online public sphere.
2B: Research and apply a range of public relations strategies and methodologies for online communication, particularly social media.
2C: Present creative and strategic solutions to communication problems, in a variety of modes to diverse publics and stakeholders.
Timetabled Learning Activities Lectures: 1 hour; tutorials/laboratories: 1.5 hours.
Unit Learning Experiences Students will critique contemporary social media, public relations and online communication theories and interrogate their application to practice through class discussions, assignments and real time analysis of social media platforms, societal and organisational issues and crises as they occur in the public sphere.
The lectures, workshops and tutorials involve analysis and critique of various online and social media platforms including websites and blogs. Students will be introduced to writing techniques for various online contexts and will experience practice-oriented teaching based on real-world case studies that ensures an integration of theory and practice.
Other Learning Experiences Students are expected to read additional technical and academic articles, analyse contemporary communication campaigns and follow social, mobile and web media trends and issues as they emerge as part of their class and assessment preparation.
Assessment Essay - 1,500 words, summative, mid teaching period, 30%.
Portfolio - 1,500 words, formative and summative, early, mid and end teaching period, 25%.
Exam - 1,000 words, summative, end teaching period, 30%.
Participation / Professionalism - In class and online participation including group class discussion leadership - Summative, individual, group work, throughout teaching period, 15%.

Each assessment is designed to develop the students' understanding of how online and social media theory is applied to the practical application of public relations strategies to achieve organisational goals.
Prerequisites Nil.
Appears in these Courses/Majors:
see individual structures for context
Public Relations (BA) [New in 2014]
Web Communication (BA) [New in 2014]
Internet Access RequirementsMurdoch units normally include an online component comprising materials, discussions, lecture recordings and assessment activities. All students, regardless of their location or mode of study, need to have access to and be able to use computing devices with browsing capability and a connection to the Internet via Broadband (Cable, ADSL or Mobile) or Wireless. The Internet connection should be readily available and allow large amounts of data to be streamed or downloaded (approximately 100MB per lecture recording). Students also need to be able to enter into online discussions and submit assignments online.


Unit Coordinator
Mrs Deborah Williams
Associate Lecturer in Strategic Communication

Murdoch Campus
t: 9360 2850
e: Deborah.Williams@murdoch.edu.au
o: 450.4.060 - Building 450, Murdoch Campus
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