Social Media

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This is a developmental space for a cross disciplinary course in social media. Contact Leigh if you would like to get involved. See The course blog for updates and notes from past events.

Social media has its roots in a number of areas of thought, following a number of paths of development that we can review today. Where it is leading is still up for grabs, your best guess is through participation. In this course we will consider the messages of leading social media commentators, hear from practitioners in fields specific to your interest areas, learn how to use a range of popular social media platforms, and develop reference texts to ensure your learning is captured and useful to you beyond the course. Although the course appears structured and defined, it is open to the customisation you need, or projects you want to do. Think of it more like an event and opportunity to try out and learn things with others, with support from people with experience, and with a structure available if you're entirely new to the field. You will find this course is particularly relevant to you if you work in business, communications, journalism, design, art and media, marketing, teaching and training, social science and research, facilitation, community work, civic work, and other areas affected by socially constructed media and communications.


To focus learning objectives and manage formal assessment (if required), there are 3 assignments. Completion of these assignments is only required if you are seeking formal assessment and accreditation.

  1. A tutorial weblog
  2. A presentation
  3. A Wikibook chapter


  1. Describe and compare different types of social media applications
  2. Setup and use popular social media applications
  3. Use collaborative document authoring software and processes
  4. Use and demonstrate understanding of copyright and media formats
  5. Demonstrate awareness of issues with social media in a discipline area and in wider society


The lectures for this unit are always developing. Each lecture has its own page and is linked in the list below. Each page will have a link to a presentation, notes for that presentation, and further readings, links and resources.

  1. Orientation to this unit
  2. It's the best of times, it's the worst of times - The pros and cons of social media to date
  3. The machine is us/ing us - Privacy, data, economic models and other basis’ for social media services
  4. An anthropological introduction to Youtube - Cultures and trends in large social media networks
  5. Radical transparency - Open source and participatory economics, mashup, sampling and re appropriation culture
  6. The evolution will be socialised - Proposals and activism for alternative approaches to policy and governance
  7. Guest lecture, panel or interview [your applied interest here]*
  8. Guest lecture, panel or interview [your applied interest here]*
  9. Guest lecture, panel or interview [your applied interest here]*
  10. Guest lecture, panel or interview [your applied interest here]*
  11. Guest lecture, panel or interview [your applied interest here]*
  12. Guest lecture, panel or interview [your applied interest here]*

*Guest lectures, panel discussions, or interviews will be arranged based on the interests of participants in this course, and on topical events occurring during this course. The unit convener will make arrangements for these lectures. If you have suggestions, please contact the unit convener, or discuss it during prior lectures and tutorials.


The tutorials for this unit are under development. Each tutorial has its own page and is linked in the list below. Each page will have a link to recordings, notes, and further readings, links and resources.

  1. Get ready
  2. Set up a blog
  3. Editing a Mediawiki
  4. Set up an RSS reader
  5. Bookmarking and tagging
  6. Photos and video online
  7. Participant presentations
  8. Participant presentations
  9. Participant presentations
  10. Participant presentations
  11. Participant presentations
  12. Participant presentations

Discipline applied[edit]

The following links are to discipline areas participating in this course. Through their involvement, you can expect learning support in areas that relate to these disciplines.

  1. Sport
  2. Health
  3. Business and governance
  4. Teaching and learning
  5. Art and Design

Further development[edit]

See the discussion page for notes on further developing this course. Some plans exist to create more advanced levels of this course for 2012.