Social Media Writing – JOUR 356

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

This course explores writing for various social media platforms and how they fit into a marketing plan. Students learn practical techniques used in producing social media content that promotes audience affinity and loyalty.

JOUR 220 or JOUR 225


Today is not the day of specialist. It is the day of the person who can do many things—and do them well. Students who desire a life in news/strategic communication will find a time when it is necessary to present information across various platforms. The idea behind this course is to introduce the student to the purposes, methods, and techniques of creating social media content that satisfies a specified audience and achieves organizational objectives. Students will learn the use of the tools and techniques that allow the creation of engaging social media content. Knowledge and a skillset of this type is a great addition to one’s professional toolbox.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

    1. Possess a practical working knowledge of the basic reporting and writing practices and techniques for producing social media content that drives engagement.
    2. Apply foundational knowledge of reporting and writing for social media sites and devices to target specific audiences.
    3. Develop a social media writing style and approach that is engagement driven.
    4. Complete practice drills and take current events quizzes each module/week. The drills are about AP style and the current events assignments are from the day’s news.


Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations/notes

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Class Introductions

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to provide a thread in response to the provided prompt for this forum. For the thread, the student must record a short video introduction answering the questions in the prompt. In addition to the thread, the student must respond to at least 2 classmates’ video introductions in written replies of at least 150 words each. Each reply must be supported by at least 1 course textbook reference in current AP style.

Social Media News Stories (4)

The student will post news to social media during the course of the semester. Due dates are listed in the course outline. These will follow assigned topics. These will be readable videos, traditional news, entertainment news, etc. It will be disseminated through your social media using a proper social media post and the course hashtag. Each Social Media News Story must follow AP style and be viewable to the public.

  1. All social media work for this course must contain the proper hashtag, and this hashtag will be provided by the instructor at the start of each term.
  2. It is required that all members of this class like, follow, connect with, etc. all others in the class. The student should contribute to other students’ posts throughout this course (e.g., comment, like, etc.).

Multiplatform Stories (2)

During this course, the student will put together 2 non-breaking stories. These packages will include a story, rich text, video/audio, slide shows, etc. as appropriate to the content and the audience. The stories will follow assigned topics and be based on data, academic research, local news, etc. (The student may seek the instructor’s approval for each story, but this step is not required.) Each Multiplatform Story much include at least 1 video and follow AP style.

Reading Quizzes (5)

There will be quizzes about each module/week’s readings. Each Reading Quiz is open-book/open-note and contains 10 true/false and fill-in-the-blank questions. There is no time limit for these quizzes. All quizzes will be provided at the beginning of the term.

Weekly News Update Quizzes (5)

The field of communication requires a love of news and information. Media members are the best party guests because they can talk about everything. They can talk about everything because they are tied into the news. For each Weekly News Update Quiz, the student will provide their own news quiz, complete with 6 questions and answers. Two questions/answers must be related to national news. Two questions/answers must be related to the student’s local news. One question and answer must be related to international news. One question and answer must be related to a genre of news the student chooses (e.g., sports, entertainment, etc.). This is not a partial credit assignment. All 6 questions and answers must be provided to receive points for this assignment. Each Weekly News Update Quiz must follow AP style.

Exams (2)

There are 2 exams during this course. They will be non-comprehensive, covering a small portion of the course material. Each exam is open-book/open-note and contains multiple-choice, true/false, and/or short essay questions. The midterm exam has 47 questions and 1 short essay question. The final exam has 45 questions and 2 short essay questions. The time limit for each exam is 1 hour and 45 minutes.