Fall 2019: Sections 3A, 4C, 6B
Spring 2020: Sections 3P, 5N, 6M
As both a topic and a potential research source, social media have been taken up in divergent ways within the disciplines of the social sciences and humanities. By definition, social media are both networking technologies and information conduits. With their hashtags, newsfeeds and status updates, social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook have become ubiquitous in our daily lives, blurring the boundaries between personal and professional networks and impacting how we gather and disseminate information. At the same time, micro-blogging has altered the public sphere, challenging journalistic norms and influencing potential forms of political engagement.
Drawing examples from media studies, psychology, journalism and political science, this course will explore how scholars approach the qualities of social networks, their uses and their users. We will examine how disciplinary context inflects our scholarly practice as readers, researchers, and writers. We will explore how research questions are formulated as well as how results are interpreted to frame a critical argument. In addition, we will consider modes of citation and stylistic conventions of academic writing.