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PWR 91OID: Creating Your Digital Self - The What, How, and Why of Building an Online Presence

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Have you ever Googled yourself? If so, what information about you rises to the top? A picture of you in your band uniform from your high school? A video you posted to TikTok? Maybe scores from a 5K you ran last year?  

It might seem like you do not have much control over what you see about yourself in a Google search, but the fact is, you do. The more of your own content you create, the more your self-created information will rise to the top. In this class, you’ll compose and fine-tune an ePortfolio (i.e. a website) that highlights your best work and tells the story behind it. In in-class activities, formal feedback, guest talks, and one-on-one conferences, you’ll be guided through the process of creating a compelling, multidimensional online portfolio. We’ll examine how to connect with different audiences (including alumni and prospective employers), explore how to pique readers’ interest, and delve into how you can represent your authentic self in compelling terms.

Major Assignments

There are three project assignments for this course. In this way, we’ll be doing project-based learning, where you will practice the concepts and theories discussed throughout the course.  For each of these three assignments, you will receive a more detailed description. Be sure to consult those descriptions as you do your work, rather than these thumbnail descriptions below:

Audience Analysis (500-750 words)

When we publish our ePortfolios, we know that multiple audiences will be accessing our work. We can’t anticipate every possible audience for our ePortfolio, but we can target how we present our material to the audience that we would most like to receive our work. For this assignment, you will identify an audience that you would like to share your ePortfolio with. You will then analyze that audience’s needs, interests, motivations, and questions by interviewing a member from that target audience and writing up a 500-750 word report on what you learned. 

Multimedia Artifact (an introductory video, an infographic, or an audio narrative)

The purpose of this assignment is for you to express an idea or share a piece of information about yourself in a visual, auditory, or multimedia format. Most ePortfolios include viewer engagement in multiple modes, and this assignment will challenge you to represent yourself in a mode that you may not yet have explored for expressing your ideas or your experiences. 

Completed ePortfolio (minimum of 3 pages: Home page, About page, one Accomplishment page)

Throughout the course, you will be developing an ePortfolio for the end of course showcase presentation. An ePortfolio is a way of thinking and designing your online presence in a website format. This project will allow you to practice the concepts and theories discussed in class,  reflect on your own digital identity and story, and create your digital identity through a combination of writing and visuals. This will be another opportunity to experiment and revise based on peer and audience reflection sessions in order to create successful and innovative work and to consider multiple solutions for telling your digital stories in different communication channels. We all have the potential to produce creative projects and this will also be a chance to take risks in telling your story within a safe environment. 

Prerequisite: WR-1 requirement or the permission of instructor

Grade option: Letter (ABCD/NP)

Course Feature: Digital Media & Visual Communication. This course does not fulfill the WR-1 or WR-2 Requirement