In my Digital and Media Literacy class, students engaged in a 2-part activity, designed to understand how data surveillance works. . .

ACTIVITY 1. Discover What Social Media Platform that You Use “Knows” About You. Take a look at one of the social media platforms that you use most and “go under the hood” to see what it knows about you. ​Take a screenshot of the most interesting examples of what the social media platform “knows” about you.


Social media platforms profit from users who create and share content

So many fascinating and fun topics are built into this week’s learning path. First and foremost is the creative writing opportunity to reflect on social media using defamiliarization, the literary technique that makes the familiar seem strange.

We will explore why and how people freely share photos, information, and aspects of their personal identity using a variety of social media platforms, and consider the negotiated balance of power between social media platforms and their users. …


This week, we begin to reconsider the way we understand the term “digital authorship.”

Students use the Volley app to offer appreciative feedback to peers on their LEAP 2 Digital Storytelling projects. This week, we also reflect on how online learning may develop collaboration and creativity in an asynchronous format. We use Kami for Chrome to talk about a research article from Glynda Hull and team and create a Collaborative Slide Deck to reflect on the perspectives offered by Howard Rheingold in his book, Net Smart: How to Thrive Online.


LEAP 2

Using language (along with music, sound effects, or images) tell a story that is rooted in your personal life experience, aiming to offer insight to your audience on the complicated business of being human.

DUE: Sunday, April 4, 9 PM

In this assignment, you compose a digital story on a topic of your choice.

Specifications of the Assignment

CONTENT. Free choice, but compose the content of your story to align with the criteria for evaluation shown below.

FORMAT. Using a narrative format, create either a (a) podcast, (b) video production or a © screencast. …


Working collaboratively with a partner, create a 2–5 minute video that enables you to creatively express some important ideas related to the themes and issues explored in this class.

DUE: Sunday, April 11 at 9 PM

Your Content, Purpose and Audience: This is your opportunity to deepen your expertise on a topic that is especially interesting to you. You may choose to inform, persuade and/or entertain on any topic that is directly connected to the course content. …


This is one of my favorite topics because it gives me the chance to connect the dots between business and law. As a liberal arts major, I didn’t really learn much about either business or law in my formal education. Teaching business students at Babson College was my first introduction into the world of business.

But I got really fired up about legal issues when I had the chance to participate in a program hosted by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), where 20 college faculty spent 2 weeks in Washington DC learning about media law and policy. Ever since then…


Seems like such an easy question — but it’s deceptively challenging to understand the nuances of taste preferences when it comes to television, film, music, videogames, and more.

People balance the need for novelty and familiarity when choosing media. This week , we examine why people like diverse types of media as a result of differences in aesthetic judgment and taste. We aim to understand how novelty, familiarity, and repetition affect people’s liking of media content. It’s a journey of discovery to understand how media genres, codes, and conventions help people comprehend and interpret media content. Of course, we will…


Week 7, Digital Authorship, Spring 2021

This week, we dig into the legal rights and responsibilities of digital authors by taking a close look at copyright and fair use.

Of course, I have been thinking about how the “copyright bird” is the guiding light for this project as this wisdom of our “Schoolhouse Rock” style song (with 60,000 views on YouTube) has been a vital part of my teaching for nearly 15 years. Watch the video that introduce the learning activities for this week:

We also begin a small project to create original visual content for Wikipedia, one of…


Ordinary creativity is the focus of this project. Document and analyze one example of a digital author to deconstruct and analyze the choices they make and discover what aspects of their work are most appreciated by their target audiences. You will create a screencast analysis video that gives insight on this individual’s work by applying the critical questions and key concepts of digital and media literacy. Your purpose is to help a general audience gain insight on the ways in which ordinary creativity is expressed by digital authors.

Criteria for Evaluation

  1. You have developed case study of a digital author using key principles…

Week 6 in COM25 Digital Media Literacy

This week, our focus is on storytelling. We’ll try to understand how fictional stories can create unreal realities that convey emotional truths. In appreciating the talents and skills of authors who create fictional works, we’ll examine how character archetypes enable stories to be timeless and universal, appealing to a large audience. We’ll consider how well-designed narrative structure can create high levels of engagement for readers, viewers, and players. We’ll analyze how reality TV structures characters and conflicts in order to produce drama.

We’ll learn more about the legacy of Vladimir Propp, one of…

Renee Hobbs

loves all things media literacy...

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