#smpcs18 tweeting assignment

About the Assignment

The Tweeting Assignment has three primary goals:

  1. to provide you with the opportunity to build on your tweeting experience by thinking about how to use it with new purposes and audiences in mind;
  2. to help generate a #smpcs18 community of learning in an online space that is informed by and impacts what happens in our classroom space;
  3. to help you gain access to the individuals who are tweeting with the hashtag you’ll be studying this semester.

The assignment is informed by five Course Learning Objectives:

Objective 1. Communication Technologies
Students will develop and enhance their use of various analog and digital communication technologies for the purpose of creating media objects with specific rhetorical goals and for specific audiences.

Objective 2. Critical Awareness of the Social Role of Media
Students will understand the history and context of the role that media has played in society. Students will be able to articulate and critique the role media has historically played, and currently plays in society.

Objective 3: Effective Communication
Students will understand the principles and practices of effective media communication.

Objective 4: Reflection
Students will develop their understanding of the important role of reflection during the investigation, design, and communication process.

Objective 5: Risk-taking
Students will know what it feels like to step out of their comfort zones and take risks with their approaches to and understanding of digital media and participatory culture.

Assignment Specifics

There are two parts to this assignment, each of which will be completed throughout the semester:

So, to get this project under way, however, we are going to complete the following:

  • create a Twitter account that is not anonymous and has as short a username as possible (short usernames save precious characters; Twitter values authenticity; you will not gain followers and people will not let you follow them without authenticity; if you already have a Twitter account with an pseudonym for your username be sure your real name is associated with the account)
  • create a professional bio that locates you as a writer researching your subject
  • make your account open for anyone to follow; having a locked account is essentially giving potential followers the finger. That might seem harsh, but that’s what it feels like when confronted with the little padlock icon. (If you are concerned about spam–and you should be–and/or who is following, in the Settings enable the option to get an email whenever you have a new follower; this will allow you to see when someone follows and to Block them if necessary. I use this quite often.)
  • add a link to your research web site when it is created
  • add a photo of yourself or something that you feel represents you or your project in some way
  • follow @billwolffsju and everyone in #smpcs18:
  • use the #smpcs18 hashtag for all tweets that are about or informed by class
  • explore and consider Twitter desktop and mobile clients, Tweetbot or Tweetdeck, or the Twitter mobile app

1. Engaging with the #smpcs18 Community of Learning

(This portion of the assignment is stolen and modified from Mark Sample at George Mason University, who stole it from Zach Whalen at the University of Mary Washington.)

Course work is often perceived as a solitary experience but as with most things in our networked society it need not be. In order to help us all engage with the texts and our work outside of class, and create a collective experience of the work we’re doing, I would like you to “live tweet” as you complete course-related work outside of class, posting to Twitter whatever comes to your mind as you complete the work. By “whatever comes to your mind” I mean things that are about the text itself. Try to limit tweets like, “This article is boring. #yawn,” as such tweets will make to look foolish and show little thought about the text itself. You should @reply to other class members frequently so that we can begin discussions about the work outside of the classroom and then continue those discussions when we meet in the classroom. Add the #popf16 hashtag to all “live tweets.”

There is no required number of tweets to tweet as your readings, work, or in-class discussions, but it is expected that each should garner many tweets. In the beginning of the semester @billwolff will give you prompts for your live-tweets. The more you tweet the more engaged the class can and will become in and outside of class. Do, however, be sure to make it clear what you’re reading, working on, or discussing by @mentioning (and following) the authors in your tweets, such as Henry Jenkins @henryjenkins, and many others who are on Twitter. Mentioning authors could result in a response, as many students have been fortunate to receive in the past.

Begin live-tweeting readings and work starting with readings for week 2 and continuing throughout the semester. A note on tweeting in class: I am a proponent of students tweeting during class about class, but only if the tweets are not taking away from what is being discussed in class.

Engaging with Your Hashtag Community

To be added when we get to Unit 3.

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