A look into the iMedia classes

Seeing as how last Thursday was the day that students will sign up for their spring classes, what better time to give people a look into the classes we take than now? Often, people ask what exactly iMedia is and what classes you take in the program, so why not answer at least one of those questions. You want a look into the Interactive Media program? Well here is your chance. Let’s take a look at just three of the courses being offered to iMedia students this spring.

Public Opinion Through New Media

Public Opinion through New Media is a course that centers on the relationship between public opinion and communication with an emphasis on persuasion. The course focuses on digital communication and how its myriad elements, from virtual environments to social media, influence publics and vice versa.  Although the course is grounded in theory, it is equally rooted in practice. By the end of the semester, students will be able to identify and explicate terms related to public opinion and have familiarity with key theories and concepts that guide public opinion research.  Students will also understand the role of the media in both forming public opinion and reflecting it.  Finally, students will have a good grasp of the relationship between emerging technologies and public opinion, and an understanding of how new technologies can galvanize publics to organize and coalesce around key issues or topics.

Among topical areas the course will cover are virtual worlds, branding, flash mobs, smart mobs and astroturfing; the power of blogs and microblogs; and the science of polling and how to read polls for hidden meaning. We will also study propaganda and how its symbols of influence are still relevant today.

Application Development

Application Development introduces students to the basic concepts of Xcode, Eclipse, and other app development software.  Students are granted an Apple educational developer license, which allows us to set up phones and tablets for testing (same with android, but you don’t need a license for that).  We’ll build fully-functional Web apps, and create a drawing app in class.  We’ll also explore using Google Maps with custom markers, maps, and geolcoation / geofencing.  Our final project will be a hybrid app, using Phonegap or an alternate framework.  Hybrid apps allow you to access the device’s API (the still/video camera, contacts, accelerometer, notifications, audio playback) and do something with it.  Please note that this is not native app development (i.e. we’re not learning Objective-C), so we won’t be making words with friends.  In other words, this class won’t necessarily help you if you have a killer app idea, it’s intended more for making your first app.

Social Media Analytics

SEO, Social Media and Analytics is a new course designed to give iMedia
students facility with using the measurement tools available on the web to
make strategic decisions about content. We’ll have a combination of theory
and application as we learn the principles of optimizing a site for SEO,
some best practices for planning content to serve both users and search
engine bots and, most importantly, how to keep up in this frantically
rapidly changing field. We’ll be bringing in several guest speakers from
the front lines of content creating and marketing, working with real
clients who need help making their sites the ones that rank and getting
our hands dirty creating content, measuring its receipt and recommending
strategies based on what we learn.

Want more? Then click here for even more class descriptions so you can get a better idea of what to expect from the Interactive Media program.

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