The MA is designed as a collaborative crash-course in hacktivism, and has a strong focus on building stuff and interventions. The computing part leans heavily towards hacking and social media software, and the Cultural Studies part focuses on theory and practice that enables new forms of social media.
The course will draw together people from a wide spectrum, some with a technical background, and others, who's main focus has been communications, culture, art, society or politics (computing/hacking background is great, but not required – people without such background will be offered an additional one-month boot camp for the necessary basics). There will be internships.
There is an eclectic group of people teaching on the programme: Dan McQuillan, Matt Fuller and Bernard Stiegler, for example.
It would be great if you could comment your ideas and thoughts (url of developers blog below), and spread the word to any potential people interested! The MA will start in 11/12. Below you find the blurb and some more infos.
MA/MSc IN CREATING SOCIAL MEDIA
What does social media look like after recent events in North Africa and the UK? What will you create? This unique theory/practice programme combines computing and cultural studies to provide people with the practical and critical skills to shape the future of social media. The MA/MSc is a collaborative theory/practice programme across the Department of Computing and the Centre for Cultural Studies, and is part of the newly launched Centre for Creative and Social Technologies.
Based on global examples, we will explore the technological and intellectual questions that have risen to prominence with the social web. We'll critique existing approaches and tools, and plan, develop, hack and implement ground-breaking applications and campaigns. We will not only analyse: we will create.
New social media platforms, at their best, develop new online forms of connecting, relating, sharing and competing. Effective and innovative social media creation, therefore, involves deep theoretical and practical knowledge of both software development and social processes. The MA/MSc will teach people how to develop and hack social media software, how social worlds operate, how software tools enable different forms of social practice, and how new social media projects can be launched successfully. Graduates will accelerate the impact of social media in their chosen field.
Participants will become proficient in
- Computing skills in software development for new social media platforms, mashups, apps, and tools. This includes both coding and data skills, and a hacker approach
- Theories of social processes and in methods to research them
- Adapting social media to a variety of technological contexts and to the needs of specific communities
- Surfacing the assumptions and limitations embedded in software
- Critically assessing contemporary discourses about social media and social change
- Project managing social media ventures, and keeping users included at all stages
- Creating social media interventions that address social processes in new ways.