4. Social Media Uses, Gratifications & User Engagement

Topics (Week 4)

  • Writing Personal Biographies
  • Uses of Social Media from a Consumer Perspective
  • Definition of “Uses & Gratifications”
  • Categories of Uses
  • Application of Uses & Gratifications Theory to Social Media Design
  • User Engagement Across Media
    • Levels of User Engagement
    • Social Network Life Cycle


    • None (see “Hands-On Activity” below)

    Hands-On Activity

    1. Find and identify examples of three categories of uses  for websites or social media channels.
    2. Find and identify examples of three different levels of user engagement.

    Be prepared to explain in class why you selected those examples.


    Assignment 4: Create Online Biography
    Due Date: Check Google Calendar

    An online biography is essential for any professional social media presence. The biography identifies who you are, what your credentials (academic and professional) are, and why people should consider what you have to say as being credible and of value.

    For this assignment write a short biography (150 to 250 words) that outlines the following:

    •  Areas of expertise
    •  Brief overview of work experience
    •  Brief overview of academic experience
    •  Areas of personal and professional interest

    This biography should be used on all of the social media accounts you create for this class (e.g. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, WordPress, etc.). Please add the biography and photograph to accounts you have already created and be sure to include it for accounts you create in the future.

    As discussed in class, profile and biographical information is different on the different social media channels (e.g. Twitter allows only 160 characters). Use your short biography as the source material for creating a theme that presents your personal “brand” across multiple media.

    You also need to include a photograph (typically a head-and-shoulders shot) that presents a professional image of you.

    To get full credit for this assignment, you need to ensure that you have entered biographical/profile information into Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, and WordPress.