Assignment Instructions


We will hold an ongoing conversation about our observations of social media in contemporary culture in the form of a class Twitter feed. You may either use your current Twitter username or create one specifically for this course. Tweets should be personal thoughts/insights/questions, responses to readings or lectures, and/or links to relevant material on the web, and should include the course hashtag (#csmt2012). You must post at least 2 course-relevant tweets per week; at least 1 of them should be explicitly related to the reading material for that week. Tweets will be counted on Fridays at 11am.

Blog Posts

There are three required blog posts, which will require you to make connections between course readings/theories and your own observations/experiences of social media. Your posts should be designed to provoke responses and discussion among your classmates. Prompts will be posted on the main course page (select category “Prompts” in the right column to navigate to them).

Blog posts will be evaluated on the following criteria:

Substantive response to (most of) the questions posed by the prompt

your post demonstrates that you have read carefully and have taken the time to (at least try to) learn the relevant concepts from the course, and to apply those concepts meaningfully to any examples discussed in your post.

Hyperlinks and multimedia examples

your post makes use of hyperlinks where appropriate. this means providing links to the homepages of any notable individuals or publications you mention (like authors from the course), and to any specific articles or webpages you reference. everyone likes pictures – include them where appropriate, but make sure you link them back to their original source (or give the source credit in your post).

Proper attribution/trackbacks

any time you reference the words or ideas of another individual, your post links back to where you found them. this means linking back to your classmates posts if you reference them, and it definitely means including links to any online material you discuss in your own posts. this helps people notice your writing, and builds you good will around the web.

Appropriate tags (at least group name and post #)

your post includes, at minimum, tags for your blogging group and for the post number. these should be consistent with everyone else in your group. the purpose of this is so that you can easily find all of your groupmates’ posts when it comes time to write your required responses

Adequate length

your post is at least 750-1000 words long. it should be no longer than 1250 words.

Proofreading for grammar, spelling, formatting

your post is proofread. this doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be as formal as you would be in an academic paper (notice the lack of capitalization here), but you should be consistent so that it is clear to your reader you didn’t just neglect to fix your mistakes.

Originality, creative flair, and unique insight

have fun writing your posts and make them fun to read! original, creative, and unique posts will be the ones that your classmates will choose to respond to. it will make you feel good when they do!

Blog Responses

After each round of blog submissions, you should read/skim over your classmates’ posts and respond to at least one of them. Your response should be at least 150 words long, and should be substantive and thought-provoking. For instance, you may want to pose a question back to the original poster, or provide a link to an outside source that you feel would be good to put in conversation with the original post. Extra credit may be awarded for particularly generative posts/responses.

Book Review

During the second half of the class you will be required to read a trade press book of your choice related to social media. The book review assignment will ask you to evaluate the book in light of and with reference to other course material you have read. This will serve as a final exam in that you will be assessed on your demonstration of understanding of material from across the course.





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