Welcome! Week 1 Monday

Overview

  1. About me
  2. Updates and changes in the syllabus
  3. Q&A about the Course
  4. Preview the syllabus
  5. About YOU

About Me

In just a minute, I’ll ask you the same questions so I can learn more about you. Here are my answers:

1. What name do you like to be called?

  • Simply my first name, Runchao

2. What name is probably on my roster so I can identify you on the roster?

  • Runchao Liu

3. If you say something in class that I want to refer back to in class, should I say:

  • “As she said…” or “Her idea was…”
  • “As he said…” or “His idea was…”
  • “As they said” or “Their idea was…”
  • Or something else? Please let me know what.

Please note which option above you prefer.

  • She/her

Please note if you want me to change my pronoun usage for you or if you want me to change what I call you at any point in the semester.

3. What’s your major?

  • Communication Studies (U of Minnesota; Shanghai International Studies U)
  • English Literature (Hebei U, China) —> nowhere near Wuhan 😉

4. What type of media content are you most excited to learn about and why? Options:

  • audio —> probably my favorite!
  • video
  • photography
  • graphics and visualization
  • social media
  • writing for the web
  • learning about the WordPress content management system

5. What thing are you most anxious/nervous about with this class?

  • I am always most nervous about the grading. This class requires a lot of grading for me. There’s 10 assignments and 30 students, which is 300 blog posts to grade during the semester.
  • Now, you may ask, “Well then why does she require so many assignments?!?!”
  • I get it. I ask myself the same thing.
  • But, for real, this course is designed to
    • improve your creativity,
    • learn new technology skills,
    • hone professional journalism and interpersonal interviewing skills,
    • practice juggling multiple stories and media assignments at the same time,
    • and get you out of your comfort zone by pushing yourself.

6. Please list any major time commitments and responsibilities outside of school that you want me to know about. For example, do you have a job(s)? Are you a caregiver for children or others? Do you have health challenges? Are you a member of the military and/or a military family? Are you a student athlete? Anything else?

7. What’s one thing (uh, five things) you wish your instructors knew about you or that you wish your instructors would ask you?

  • I want my students to know…
    • I am 100% committed to their growth and success in this class. Please don’t hesitate to ask for help or guidance.
    • I understand this class is time-intensive for everyone, but many students note this class as helping them get a job/internship and increasing their confidence in their job/internship.
    • You may find some assignments very easy and another student may find the same assignment very difficult. We all come to this class with different media experiences. Please be patient and kind if you already know a lot about a particular media. Please try your best and be positive if you don’t know anything about a particular media.
    • I welcome any feedback on the course content at any time! If you want to learn something that’s not included in the class schedule, feel free to let me know and we’ll see if and how we could incorporate your learning interests!
    • Please don’t be surprised to receive email reminders or replies at 2 a.m. from me.

Important updates and changes in the syllabus

  1. Download the latest syllabus.
  2. The date of some events are TBD. I will share a google doc link for you to track the latest changes of the class schedule. These will be announced in class and via email as well.
  3. COJO computer lab (for using Adobe products outside the classroom):
    • Moved back to Ross Hall 423
    • Open hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • If you need to use the lab after 5 p.m., please inform the instructor in advance so I can let the managers know about your presence, or you will be asked to leave the lab after 5 p.m.

Q&A about the Course

What kinds of technology do I need for this course?

Your smartphone can do photography, audio, social media, and video, so that’s all you need.

Note: If you want to learn about digital video production and work with professional cameras, then take the Digital Video Production class with Dr. Kaatie Cooper. For audio production, consider taking my class Podcasting and audio storytelling in future semesters 🙂

In terms of software, we will use:

  • WordPress (free website/blog hosting platform)
  • Photoshop (installed in computer labs; free 7-day trial to download) and Pixlr (free online photo editing) for photo editing
  • Audacity (installed in computer labs and free to download) for audio editing
  • Canva (free online graphic design program)
  • Google My Maps (free online mapping program)
  • Twitter/Instagram (free online social media account)
  • Adobe Premiere (installed in computer labs; free 7-day trial to download) for video editing

If you prefer to other software programs to accomplish a project, and your project fulfills the project requirements, then that is OK with me! For example, some students prefer their own Mac computers and use Garage Band or iMovie to edit audio and video. That’s fine. Just fulfill the assignment requirements.

Tell me more about the quizzes.

In-class attendance is required for quiz days. They are online on WyoCourses. You cannot use notes.

How important are the book and readings?

The book readings (see Course Schedule in Syllabus for dates of when readings are due) are required to read BEFORE we start any new unit on a new media platform.

The book supplements the in-class lectures and discussions. Please note that I will not lecture from the book. Sometimes, we will discuss the readings during class, so I expect everyone to have done the readings.

The book gives you information that makes you appreciate that media platform more, and it provides tips that will help you during the media projects.

The quizzes will also include information from the readings.

Are we required to speak up and ask questions in class?

We will have occasional in-class small-group discussions. I expect you to participate in those conversations.

I expect you to ask questions about the assignments during class, if you have any questions.

We may do peer-editing/reviewing in this class. I expect you to fully engage with your peer-editing/reviewing partner and provide thorough verbal and written feedback.

Does attendance affect our grade?

Yes. Throughout the semester, I have unannounced and announced in-class participation points, which are worth 10% of your grade. These points cannot be made up unless you have a university-related absence or otherwise a good explanation of the emergency of why you missed class.

Do we have a final exam?

No.

What do most people struggle with in this course?

Every student seems to struggle with getting motivated for at least one assignment in this class, but that assignment differs among students.

Every student seems to struggle with understanding the technology and getting frustrated with the learning process for at least one assignment in this class, but that assignment differs among students.

These are completely natural reactions to challenging yourself in this course. Keep pushing. Let me know if you need assistance or guidance! But, keep in mind that this class is often trial-and-error learning. There’s not a lot of hand-holding with the technology. You dive in and start learning.

What’s been the most challenging project for students in the past?

I don’t have any data on this, but vdeo editing and audio editing can be extremely tedious. Editing always takes WAY more time than students anticipate. And, there is room for technological malfunction with both of these media.

If I have to miss class, what’s the best way to let you know?

Let me know in person or via email in advance of your absence, if possible. Together, we will figure out how to keep you up-to-speed with the course.

If your absence is not planned in advance, please email me a quick note about your absence. I don’t need doctors notes or long explanations. However, if your absences begin to accrue more than a few days, then I will check in on your via email and express my concern.

A note about graphics and visualization…

There is a COJO 3200 class on Graphics, which I recommend to anyone interested in graphics. This class will use Google My Maps to visualize and map a place-based story that you write.

Is extra credit offered in this course?

Probably not.

Syllabus Time!

About YOU

Please take out a piece of paper and fill it out with:

  1. What name do you like to be called?
  2. What name is probably on my roster so I can identify you on the roster?
  3. If you say something in class that I want to refer back to in class, should I say:
  • “As she said…” or “Her idea was…”
  • “As he said…” or “His idea was…”
  • “As they said” or “Their idea was…”
  • Or something else? Please let me know what.

Please note which option above you prefer.

Please note if you want me to change my pronoun usage for you or if you want me to change what I call you at any point in the semester.

  1. What’s your major?
  2. What type of media content are you most excited to learn about and why? Options:
  • audio
  • video
  • photography
  • graphics and visualization
  • social media
  • writing for the web
  • learning about the WordPress content management system
  1. What type of media content are you already professionally proficient and experienced in?
  • audio
  • video
  • photography
  • graphics and visualization
  • social media
  • writing for the web
  • WordPress content management system
  1. What thing are you most anxious/nervous about with this class?
  2. Please list any major time commitments and responsibilities outside of school that you want me to know about. For example, do you have a job(s)? Are you a caregiver for children or others? Do you have health challenges? Are you a member of the military and/or a military family? Are you a student athlete? Anything else?
  3. What’s one thing you wish your instructors knew about you or that you wish your instructors would ask you?
  4. Is there a question that you would like to ask me?

In-class self-introductions if there’s time.

Before dismissing the class…Reminders:

  • The first reading assignment due before Friday’s class. Please remember to purchase the textbook as soon as possible.

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