Writing for Digital Media, Summer 2020

From Gerald R. Lucas
crn 50055 nmac 5108.01 online Summer 2020

Writing for Digital Media teaches writing skills for a digital age. This project-oriented course will focus on collaborative editing. This section on NMAC 3108 centers around the most successful online writing environment ever conceived: Wikipedia. This semester, you will engage your fellow students and the Wikipedia community with a group-based writing project.

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Digital media differs from that of print in several key ways, and because of these differences, to use digital media successfully, writers must develop specific skills for its mastery. A project-oriented course, NMAC 3108 introduces students to these skills, encourages them to practice an online professionalism, provides multiple opportunities to develop digital literacies, and teaches them to become fluent practitioners of new media. As this section of WritDM is taught fully online, please be sure you are aware of the implications before attempting it.


Welcome to NMAC 3108, Writing for Digital Media. The document you’re reading is your syllabus. Everything you need for this class is on this page and linked off of it. Bookmark it now and return here if you get lost or confused. If you found your way here from D2L, congratulations. You will not need D2L for the rest of the semester.

Please read this document and those it links to carefully at the beginning of the semester. There is much information to process, and it can be somewhat daunting — especially if you read cursorily. If you are confused, do your best to work through it by (re)reading this document carefully and completely, searching this site, or consulting the FAQ. I promise, there is an answer to your question. If all else fails, you may contact me. Trust yourself to follow directions and find the answers. Be careful and deliberate.

For a head start on how to approach all work in this course, see “How to Do Well in My Class” and “Research & Response.”

Also, use this syllabus as a model for how you should approach digital writing as a college student and a professional.

This course will probably be unlike any college course you have ever taken. It is designed to let you — the students — discover and create your own knowledge using the powerful digital devices and platforms we all have access to. I’m assuming, since you’re taking this class online, that you are comfortable with working by yourself, are confident in your ability to take risks, do not need the constant reassurance of an authority figure, and have a basic Internet literacy. You will learn more about my approach shortly. Please enter with an open mind. If you’re curious to know more right now, you might want to read my teaching philosophy and peruse the articles under HackEdu.

Again, read this document through carefully before beginning. You might want to take notes as you go, jotting down questions you have. I bet they are answered by the time you’re ready to begin the first lesson.


In this course, you will use lessons, texts, and daily practice to improve your writing for the screen while developing your online, professional persona. Specifically, students will develop:

  • writing skills most appropriate for several platforms on digital media;
  • a professional persona that targets a specific expert community; and
  • a collaborative sense of composition.

You will read, write, and workshop (discuss each other’s work online for the purpose of improvement). Though this class teaches you how to target a digital audience and the basics of how to publish writing for the web, it is not a technology class; it is primarily a writing class, though we will address various digital media throughout. That said, our primary concern is writing, not the tech we do it with.

Student Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing the course, students will demonstrate:

  • the ability to analyze and evaluate issues in new media and communication;
  • proficiency writing for the web; and
  • proficiency collaborating on a writing project.
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