Course Assignment & Description – Remix in Higher Education (5.2)

ENGL 69 Entrepreneurial Writing on the Web

This seminar will explore the current state of computer-assisted composition and help students develop new media writing projects for emerging online cultural and economic spaces. Content will range from understanding the economic dimensions of cultural production on the Web (e.g., viral popularity on YouTube and advertising-supported blogs) to developing new media composition skills necessary for success in emerging online environments, to successfully establishing online domains, and to creating virtual professional spaces.


Stage One:

Create a video that proposes a project to be worked on by members of the class. The project should connect with four broad areas of interest:

– ENGL 69 and education
– ENGL 150 and the future of English/literature
– A Internet artist
– A local or campus entity or concern

Before getting started, think about a publicity campaign that might be developed around these broad topics. Then, come up with a proposal for a smaller aspect of one of the topics above that the class might explore or develop in more detail.

You will use Camtasia to compose the video. As you begin working with Camtasia, explore the various options that might be had for composing–callouts, typing on screen, the use of music, video clips, etc.

In most cases, the video should be not more than two minutes long. You will work on this over the next week. I will give you instructions later for exporting and posting the video.

Stage Two:

You have made a proposal for a publicity campaign, and now you are in the middle of the project. Create a promotional video or teaser related to the publicity campaign you are working on. There are two options:

1. Create something for the campaign. Make a piece that might serve as a promotional element for the campaign on which you are working. It could be a blurb for an upcoming event. It could be something about the entity itself. It could just be a kind of viral teaser. You can coordinate with the members of your group as needed.

2. Create something about the campaign and the class. This involves moving up a level to create a meta-teaser about the work of the group as it relates to the class, to publicity-related work, and to learning. This is essentially a reflective/promotional piece about what you are doing.

Use all of the Camtasia strategies you have learned so far. Keep track of your sources. When you are ready, use the Teaser option to submit the piece, listing your sources as you make the posting.

Stage Three:

Develop a case study examining the publicity campaign that you have undertaken. This will be one of the major projects that you work on for the rest of the semester. The case study should have two major focuses:

1. Reflecting on and explaining the significance of your publicity campaign, with an emphasis on entrepreneurship

2. Connecting this work to a larger theme related to some aspect of education

The essay will be composed on our Web site using tools for embedding videos, images, and texts. In some ways, the essay will emulate new modes of presenting information like those represented in this article. You will need to work to together to create multimedia materials covering both of the focus areas of your essay. In addition to the materials that you have already created, you should conduct interviews and gather additional media items. You should also make more screencasts that capture aspects of your publicity campaign. And you can create multimedia items related to the research you do about the second focus are of the essay–an aspect of education.

As you develop and refine your topic, begin by identifying an aspect of education that will structure the work you create. You might look at something like relevance, motivation, changing modes of writing, collaboration, etc. You will want to conduct research into the aspect of education that you identify, using articles and books. You will also want to integrate research into entrepreneurship and publicity work as you develop the first focus area of the essay. You will also want to keep in mind the audience for the case study, which will be a hybrid of the general public and industry and education insiders.