For the next two weeks, I’m teaching a college-level “Digital & Social Media Literacy” course to high school juniors and seniors through the University’s Pre-College Summer Program. I decided to create a public blog for the course that can serve as a resource and area of discussion for others interested in the areas of digital media literacy, social media literacy or just digital & social media in general. I’ll continue to add content to the site throughout the year, after the summer course ends. I’m teaching a special topics course on Social Media at the University of Hartford next spring and the blog will be a resource and starting point for students enrolled in that course as well. I’d encourage you to check out the blog and join the conversation.
For the course, I decided to focus the first week on “thinking” about digital & social media, exploring themes, concepts and ideas of digital & social media literacy, disruption and displacement, impact on traditional media, social networks, social media, youth culture, and participatory culture. I gleaned ideas for readings and assignments from the work of communication scholars Howard Rheingold, Serena Carpenter, and Greg Downey and past syllabi of “social media” courses taught by Barry Hollander and Karen Russell here at UGA.
The second week of my course will focus more on “doing,” the creation and consumption of content through forms and platforms of digital and social media. I’ve been teaching some form of these “week two” assignments, through my “Media & Message: Communicating in the Digital Age” Duke TIP @ UGA summer course, or through my News Editing course, the past three years. I would be remiss if I did not mention the work of Mark Johnson in advancing the teaching of digital literacies here in the Grady College the past few years.
Developing Digital & Social Media literacies are important and I’m honored to have the opportunity to join others in advancing the cause through teaching and scholarship.