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Writing for Digital Media

This eight-week course provides an opportunity for current and future professionals to hone their written communication skills for the relatively new and rapidly evolving context of digital media. The use of digital media as a marketing tool, a newsroom, a site of social interaction, and a professional writer’s showcase provides both new challenges and new opportunities for the professional writer that are best met by understanding the architecture of new media forms (websites, blogs, social media sites, etc.) and the new relationships with audiences these forms have generated. Since poorly written and presented content is an immediate “turn off” for potential clients and other readers, it is essential that professional writers have a clear understanding of how to “write to task” in the appropriate register.  The course will emphasize vital strategies, such as how to combine a “soft” style with “hard” facts, and how to exploit digital media forms to showcase the writer’s best work. In addition, the course will assist learners in clarifying their career objectives as professional writers. To this end, the last two modules of the course will be roundtable discussions with social media consultants and working journalists.

This course is co-presented by the School of Continuing Studies Personal and Cultural Enrichment (PACE) program.
Start Date: Tuesday, September 30, 2014
End Date:  Tuesday, November 18, 2014
Day and Time: Tuesdays, 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Duration: 8 weeks
Location: Burnside Hall, room 308
Course Fee: $395.00 (plus applicable taxes)*
*McGill students, staff, and alumni:  20% discount
 
This course has been cancelled. Please check our winter schedule offerings, which will be posted in the coming weeks.

Objectives

  • develop an understanding of digital platform architecture and the challenges and opportunities it provides for rich and engaging written communication
  • improve written communication skills for digital media platforms
  • improve ability to “write to task”
  • understand the importance of the blog as a new narrative form and accessible writer’s showcase
  • understand the role of the “ghost blogger” in communicating corporate goals and values
  • understand the horizontal and collaborative models of communication in the digital newsroom
  • understand the role of the writer in the world of social media
  • produce a high-quality web page, a professional writer’s blog post, and a corporate ghost blog in the appropriate register
  • clarify career objectives as a professional writer

Topics Covered

  • a brief history of digital media, and an overview of the digital forms available
  • the evolution of the writing profession in response to the demands of digital media
  • the anatomy of the traditional website
  • developing your online voice and personal brand
  • how to effectively use a “soft” style to deliver “hard” facts
  • writing to task
  • pairing writing skills with technical and marketing expertise
  • the digital newsroom

Who Should Attend

  • current and future professional writers in all sectors
    • journalists
    • bloggers—both individual and corporate
    • web content providers
    • marketing specialists

Instructor/Facilitator

Nancy A. Locke is a freelance writer, translator, editor, educator, and public speaker who works in both the print and digital domains. She has provided copy on a range of topics for a content provider to the traditional press, specialized trade publications, blogs, and commercial websites. Since 2011, she has maintained a personal blog that currently contains 196 posts and has garnered nearly 65,000 visits.
Nancy also teaches entrepreneurship for translators at the Université de Montréal, translates and adapts web content, and collaborates with clients to develop their content and social media strategies.

Cancellation Policy

All cancellation requests must be made in writing on-line: click here to cancel. Please note that you will be required to quote your registration reference number. The following cancellation policy applies:

Up to 14 days prior to the start date: Full refund
Up to 7 days prior to the start date: Refund minus $100 cancellation fee
Within 7 days prior to the start date: No refund; however, the instructor may allow you to attend specific classes.

If no notice is given prior to the start of the course and you fail to attend, you will be liable for the full course fee.

The MWC reserves the right to cancel this course up to 5 days prior to the event.

If you cannot attend the course but wish to send someone in your place you must make a request for the substitution in writing to mwc [at] mcgill [dot] ca.


Contact Information

Telephone:  514-398-7109
Email: mwc [at] mcgill [dot] ca