Assignment ideas for social media courses

I want to share some assignments that I developed for Introduction to Social Media Marketing, which is a 3-week open online course at MulinBlog Online J-School. If you are an instructor of social media, please offer some comments and share your course materials; if you are a student, please also share your learning experience. Continue reading

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Now free: Google Earth Pro for immersive news reports and digital storytelling

Journalists and digital storytellers can take advantage of the video tour feature of Google Earth Pro, which used to cost $399 a year but is now available for free, for an immersive audience experience with locations and places. Continue reading

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Selected readings: SWOT analysis of social media marketing

In preparation for an online course Social Media Marketing, I selected four articles that answer some common questions about social media SWOT analysis. I want to share these articles with fellow instructors and I invite suggestions on good reading materials. Continue reading

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Five shot sequence: Tutorial and example

Five shot sequence is a popular filming technique that uses five different shots to depict an activity. In my open online course Audio Slideshow Storytelling, students need to study a tutorial and create a sequence. I want to share the five-shot tutorial we use and an exemplary student work. Continue reading

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Hybrid course: A viable form of online learning for digital journalism majors

My experience teaching at West Virginia University tells me that hybrid format works well for digital journalism courses. I want to share with fellow instructors how we structure a dual-instructor hybrid course and our experience teaching it. Continue reading

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A step-by-step guide to shooting iPhone video

RTÉ journalist Philip Bromwell shot a video on iPhone and compiled a cheat sheet with shot-by-shot shooting instructions. I will use the video and the shot list as required readings in mobile production courses, and want to recommend them to anyone who needs to teach or learn mobile journalism. Continue reading

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An interview with two audience engagement editors in Gannett’s “newsroom of the future”

Audience engagement editor is a new position being created amid Gannett’s nationwide newsroom restructuring. I talked to audience engagement editors at two Gannett newspapers to find out what engagement editors do, and what skills are needed to land this job in the new newsroom. Continue reading

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2014 year in review: How I do SEO for my blog

Among other things, the routine SEO practice helps drive this blog’s traffic – about 180,000 page views and 120,000 visitors in 2014. SEO techniques deployed for this blog include (a) proper metadata writing and (b) keyword research and placement. Continue reading

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Mobile journalism examples and production tips: Q&A with RTÉ video journalist Philip Bromwell

Philip Bromwell is a news video journalist with RTÉ, Ireland’s national broadcaster; for the past 12 months, he has taken on an extra responsibility to explore and encourage mobile journalism (mojo) in the newsroom. In an email interview, I asked Philip some questions about mobile video reporting: Continue reading

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Who has the best geocoding tool for heat map – Tableau, Mapbox or Google Fusion Tables?

Geocoding is a key step in creating interactive heat maps; Tableau has a geocoding tool that is more efficient than the geocoding functions of Mapbox and Fusion Tables. Continue reading

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Drone videography: Basic and creative aerial filming techniques for drone video cameras

If you have a drone video camera but don’t know how to film professional-looking videos, watch these footage to get some ideas for basic and creative drone filming techniques. Continue reading

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Three guidelines for designing data dashboard in news reports

Data dashboard in a news report needs to (a) focus on a clear message, (b) use charts that best communicate the message and (c) include annotations to help audience understand the dashboard.

I developed these guidelines from my own experience and from some recent readings, especially the book Communicating Data with Tableau by Ben Jones. While news editors can try these guidelines in developing a dashboard, journalism instructors can also adapt them into a course assignment. Continue reading

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Annotated Tableau Public tutorial video: A quick start guide for instructors and first-timers

This is a 5-minute video I created for the Intro to Data Visualization open course. Instructors and beginners of Tableau can use it as a quick start guide to create interactive data visualizations. Continue reading

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A “multimedia map”: How to use Google Maps with embedded photos and videos

A Google map with embedded photos and videos becomes a “multimedia map” that provides for an interactive presentation tool for use in tourism, event planning, news reporting and other location-based presentations. Continue reading

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Training, more than equipment, is key to quality video production

A participant in my recent open online course, Audio Slideshow Storytelling, shows us that anyone, with proper training, can produce a good story using consumer-level equipment and free software. Continue reading

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