Writing for Digital Media

Marissa K. Landrigan, Writing for Digital Media, Fall 2017

Course Description:

Our goal will be to learn how digital tools & technologies are influencing writing, how they are creating genres and shaping modes of readership and participation. To explore what it means to read and write in the digital age.

Required Texts:

The Johns Hopkins Guide to Digital Media, ed. Marie-Laure Ryan, Lori Emerson, & Benjamin J. Robertson
Steal Like an Artist Journal by Austin Kleon

Marissa K. Landrigan, Writing for Digital Media, Spring 2017

Course Description:

Writing for Digital Media is designed to introduce you to the world of digital composition. But, of course, we already know that world intimately.

We’ve been emailing or IMing since we were tweens. Our blogs, Twitter or Instagram feeds, Facebook profiles, and reddit forums have been a part of our social lives for years, shaping and reflecting real-life identity to a digital world. Wikipedia and Google are our default research sources. Video games and smartphones are among our closest friends – or, at the very least, a primary form of interaction between friends. At any rate, the vast majority of the words or texts we encounter are digital. This is our world.

So we don’t so much need an introduction as we need a framework—a method for critically thinking about digital forms of composition. Thing is, composing has the potential to include so many other methods – beyond just words-on-page – of creating meaning for an audience. Putting musical notation on paper, for example, or arranging the elements of a photograph to achieve a certain effect are also acts of composition. And the digital world has added even more possible methods for composition. We need to learn how these digital tools and technologies are influencing writing, how they are creating new genres and new modes of readership and participation.

This course is designed to challenge you to push beyond what we understand composition and writing to be today. This will require you to experiment, to use technology in ways and for purposes that may be unfamiliar to you. It will require you to engage your creativity, to begin to think and act beyond the structures created by common practice or software. Above all, this course will require you to play—to be unafraid of imagining, trying, and even failing, in order to explore the new spaces that digital tools and technology have opened up for us as writers.

What You'll Need:

- A copy of The Johns Hopkins Guide to Digital Media, edited by Marie-Laure Ryan, Lori Emerson, and Benjamin J. Robertson. Either the print or ebook version is fine. (JHG)
- The Steal Like an Artist Journal by Austin Kleon. This needs to be the print version, and should not be purchased used. (Second-hand is fine, but the journal needs to be blank.) (SLAJ)
- A method of reading/viewing digital objects for homework. Sometimes this may mean viewing, playing, or listening to something in a file format that may or may not be compatible with your own machine, so please take the time to learn where the computer labs are and when they’re open. The particulars of your own machine can’t be an excuse for incomplete reading.
- Regular, reliable internet access and access to software to create your own digital work. All of our projects can be created using free, open-source software (and a list of these examples is provided on our website) but you are welcome to use any software you choose. If you feel most comfortable working with a certain platform, please do so.
- A method of storing/transporting your own digital works-in-progress (a USB flash drive, and/or cloud storage such as Dropbox, Box, or SugarSync). You’ll sometimes need to be able to access these in class, and sometimes on your own. Plan accordingly. And for the love of Anonymous, don’t store your stuff in only one place. Backup backup backup.
- A website for handing in all of your assignments online. Don’t worry – we’ll build one together if you don’t already have one.

Syllabus: 

Marissa K. Landrigan, Writing for Digital Media, Spring 2016

Course Description:

This course will introduce students to the basics of successful writing for a variety of online media. We will rhetorically analyze the particular needs of digital media including blogs, websites, various social media, and collaborative media such as wikis. Using a process-based approach, we will then practice crafting clear, concise prose, and shaping it to meet the needs of online readers. By analyzing how online communities organize, use, and distribute knowledge and information, we will evaluate and build digital stories that communicate simply and effectively. Since our focus will be on developing a rhetorical awareness of the needs of an online audience, the course will allow students to practice digital writing for a variety of professional fields, ranging from business and technical communication to journalism, from public relations and marketing to creative writing. You should therefore be prepared to dictate much of your own focus in this course, in terms of subject and content.

Required Texts:

-The Johns Hopkins Guide to Digital Media, edited by Marie-Laure Ryan, Lori Emerson, and Benjamin J. Robertson. Either the print or ebook version is fine.

Syllabus: 

Marissa K. Landrigan, Writing for Digital Media, Fall 2015

Course Description:

This course will introduce students to the basics of successful writing for a variety of online media. We will rhetorically analyze the particular needs of digital media including blogs, websites, various social media, and collaborative media such as wikis. Using a process-based approach, we will then practice crafting clear, concise prose, and shaping it to meet the needs of online readers. By analyzing how online communities organize, use, and distribute knowledge and information, we will evaluate and build digital stories that communicate simply and effectively. Since our focus will be on developing a rhetorical awareness of the needs of an online audience, the course will allow students to practice digital writing for a variety of professional fields, ranging from business and technical communication to journalism, from public relations and marketing to creative writing. You should therefore be prepared to dictate much of your own focus in this course, in terms of subject and content.

Required Texts:

None

Syllabus: 

Marissa K. Landrigan, Writing for Digital Media, Fall 2014

Course Description:

This course will introduce students to the basics of successful writing for a variety of online media. We will rhetorically analyze the particular needs of digital media including blogs, websites, various social media, and collaborative media such as wikis. Using a process-based approach, we will then practice crafting clear, concise prose, and shaping it to meet the needs of online readers. By analyzing how online communities organize, use, and distribute knowledge and information, we will evaluate and build digital stories that communicate simply and effectively. Since our focus will be on developing a rhetorical awareness of the needs of an online audience, the course will allow students to practice digital writing for a variety of professional fields, ranging from business and technical communication to journalism, from public relations and marketing to creative writing. You should therefore be prepared to dictate much of your own focus in this course, in terms of subject and content.

Required Texts:

None

Marissa K. Landrigan, Writing for Digital Media, Fall 2013

Course Description:

This course will introduce students to the basics of successful writing for a variety of online media. We will rhetorically analyze the particular needs of digital media including blogs, websites, various social media, and collaborative media such as wikis. Using a process-based approach, we will then practice crafting clear, concise prose, and shaping it to meet the needs of online readers. By analyzing how online communities organize, use, and distribute knowledge and information, we will evaluate and build digital stories that communicate simply and effectively. Since our focus will be on developing a rhetorical awareness of the needs of an online audience, the course will allow students to practice digital writing for a variety of professional fields, ranging from business and technical communication to journalism, from public relations and marketing to creative writing. You should therefore be prepared to dictate much of your own focus in this course, in terms of subject and content.

Required Texts:

Writing for Digital Media by Brian Carroll

Syllabus: 
Subscribe to RSS - Writing for Digital Media