iws fall 2012 blogging assignment

Assignment Overview

For this assignment, students created their own professional blog using WordPress.com. The goal of the assignment will be for you to share your thoughts on the process of learning how to code a web site, the relationship between your future field and new media spaces, and representation of your future profession (and the people in it) as seen in various media. Through your writings you will enhance the process of creating a professional online identity and work toward the final assignment, in which your blog posts will play a roll.

Assignment Specifics

Each student will complete the following:

  • create a blog using WordPress.com with a URL that reads like yourwebsitename.wordpress.com (eg meggmccourt.wordpress.com)
  • name the blog in a way consistent with your web site name
  • choose a layout theme for your blog that is as similar as possible to your Final Professional Design
  • learn several WordPress blog features (how to create posts, add links, add widgets, add images, and so forth)
  • compose a professional about page that includes links to your web site, social media sites, and contact info
  • create a professional blogroll (I suggest using some of the blog search engines listed on this Mashable post)
  • create a sidebar list of links to your social media spaces
  • embeds your Twitter feeds using the WordPress Twitter widget
  • link to the blog from your hand-coded professional site
  • other features that you desire

Each individual will complete the following:

  • post at least 2 posts per week
    • 1 post should be a detailed update on where you are with the coding of your site, how you are feeling about things, and what questions you have (incorporate a discussion of the readings into this post)
    • 1 should be on another topic that relates to your professional interests based on things you are reading in a variety of media
  • posts can be of any length, but the more nuanced your discussions the better your blog will be (my recommendation is no less than equivalent to 3/4 page single space text)
  • posts can and should include images and/or videos, and MUST include links in your posts where necessary; the more links you have the better your posts will be
  • posts should include categories and at least 5 tags each
  • tweet a link to your blog posts

You may be asked to post various project-related pieces to your blog, as well.

Each individual in the module will also be required to complete the following per week:

  • reply to at least 2 blog posts per week from another IWS student’s blog. Your replies should contain sentences and further the author’s ideas. Just writing “wow–I totally agree” is not enough. Engage the ideas. They should be 50 – 100 words long.

WordPress has a very good Support page, and I encourage you to spend some time with it, especially the sections for Getting Started, Creating Content, Manage My Profile, and Customize My Site. Please check these areas before emailing BW with questions.

Your first blog posts should appear the week of October 29 and continue through the rest of the semester.

Assessment and Other Stuff

Your blog posts will be assessed in terms of how well they start discussion, how well the ideas from the course texts are incorporated (yes, quote and paraphrase), how well they incorporate multimedia (images, videos, and so on), and how well they show you thinking critically about the issues of writing and and the changing of writing.

So that I am able to assess your blog comments, please keep a log in a Word or GoogleDocs document that contains for each comment a log of the following:

  • the date
  • the title of the post you respond the
  • the post URL
  • the full text of your comment

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