Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit



Unit rationale, description and aim

Constructing content for delivery on social media platforms and communicating with diverse audiences using these platforms are key activities for media and communication professionals. This unit explores the ways in which social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have revolutionised the media communication landscape. Students consider the implications of these changes and learn to use social media for professional communication. This unit explores new and emerging media platforms and provides students with the opportunity to gain practical skills in operating effectively in this environment. The aim of Social Media Communication is to provide students with the means to become critical content users and producers across a range of significant new and social media platforms.

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Describe the role and impact of social media on our cultural, social, political and economic communities (GA5, GA6, GA8); 

LO2 - Develop and organise content appropriate for publication on social media platforms (GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9, GA10);

LO3 - Design and develop a social media campaign using a wide range of technologies (GA3, GA5, GA10). 

Graduate attributes

GA3 - apply ethical perspectives in informed decision making

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA6 - solve problems in a variety of settings taking local and international perspectives into account

GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information 

GA9 - demonstrate effective communication in oral and written English language and visual media 

GA10 - utilise information and communication and other relevant technologies effectively.


Topics will include: 

  • Social media platforms and emerging notions of digital citizenship  
  • Network theories, social media publics and communities of practice 
  • Social media, politics and civic cultures  
  • Communication Structures 
  • Mobilisation and social media activism  
  • Trolling and other aspects of contested social media publics  
  • Visual communication via video and images 
  • Social gaming  
  • Research techniques and information gathering for communicating on social media 
  • Writing ethically and sensitively (mindful of the needs of indigenous and marginalised people) 
  • Design principles surrounding social media campaigns 

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

The unit may be offered face-to-face, online or in blended mode. This unit engages students in active learning activities, such as reading, writing, discussion and problem-solving to promote analysis, synthesis and evaluation of class content. Students participate in diverse learning activities where they encounter ideas, theories and examples of practice related to social media communication. The learning activities allow students to gradually develop competencies arising from the learning outcomes of the unit. Students will undertake practical learning and assessments that focus on real-world applications of the skills developed in this unit, including the design and delivery of a social media campaign. This unit comprises150 hours in total with a normal expectation of 36 hours of directed study and the total contact hours should not exceed 36 hours. Directed study includes a 3 hour practical workshop on campus each week. The balance of the hours becomes private study to complete unit readings, assessments and prepare for directed tasks. 

Assessment strategy and rationale

Assessments have been developed to meet the unit learning outcomes and develop graduate attributes consistent with University assessment requirements.  

Students will participate in weekly online e-tivities to enhance student learning of digital literacy and scaffold students through the content of the unit. These can include collaborative online discussions, personal reflective critiques, reading responses and short quizzes. The folio of social media content allows students to develop their writing skills across a range of social media platforms. The social media campaign allows students apply their knowledge of social media technologies, practices and processes to build and pitch an engaging and effective campaign. 

The schedule provides scaffolded learning with opportunities for students to monitor their own progress, practice their skills and receive feedback. 

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Online e-tivities 

This assessment allows students to engage with the knowledge surrounding learning outcome one while using the mechanisms of social media considered through the unit. 



GA4, GA5, GA6, GA8,  

Folio of social media content 

This assessment develops skills in developing and organizing social media content.  



GA3, GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9, GA10 

Social media campaign  

This assessment provides a context for students to apply the knowledge and skills developed around social media communication strategies.   



GA3, GA4, GA5, GA8, GA9, GA10 

Representative texts and references

Bala, A. (2014) From Twitter to Tahrir Square: ethics in social and new media communication, Santa Barbara: Praeger. 

Darics, E. & DuFrene, D. (2016) Writing online: A guide to effective digital communication at work, New York: Business Expert Press. 

Flynn, N. (2012) The social media handbook: Policies and best practices to successfully manage your organization's social media presence, posts, and potential risks. San Fransisco: Pfeiffer. 

Foster, J., & Foster, J. (2013) Writing skills for public relations: Style and technique for mainstream and social media. London: Kogan Page. 

Jenkins, H. (2010) Convergence culture: Where old and new media collide. New York: New York University Press.  

Hunsinger, J., & Senft, T. M. (2014) The social media handbook. New York: Routledge. 

Lipschultz, Jermy Harris. (2018) Social Media Communication: Concepts, practices, data, law and ethics. New York: Routledge. 

Papacharissi, Z. (2011) A Networked Self: Identity, Community, and Culture on Social Network Sites. New York: Routledge. 

Peck, J. (2011) Think before you engage: 100 questions to ask before starting a social media marketing campaign. Indianapolis: Wiley Publishing. 

Ryan, D. (2014) The best digital marketing campaigns in the world II. London: Kogan Page. 

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