4812 / 7812 Basic Info

Basic Info | Sample Syllabus

You’re already using social media every day – but are you using it in the most effective way possible? In Online Audience Development students will explore, envision and evaluate the possibilities of social media integration in news production workflows. We’ll experiment with emerging social platforms to see how they might fit in a newsroom’s social media and branding playbook.

You will also exercise, develop and improve on all the journalism skills practiced in previous classes: researching, reporting, editing, producing, proofreading, photo editing and design. The big difference? This time you’ll be reporting on our newsrooms in order to help create deeper connections with the audience.


Staff Photojournalism (J4560/7560)
Convergence Reporting (J-4804/7804)
or Broadcast News II (J-4306/7306)
or News Reporting (J-4450/J-7450)
or instructor consent

Class Schedule

This course is three credit hours.
Course meets Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2 p.m. – 3:15 p.m. in 45 Walter Williams Hall.

Course Faculty

Amy Simons, Associate Professor
44 Walter Williams Hall
Email: simonsa@missouri.edu
Twitter: @amysimons | @muconvergence
Instagram: amysimons0107
Snapchat: amysimons0107
WeChat: amysimons (Click for QR code)
Phone: (573) 884-2001

Office Hours:
By appointment only
**Please make appointments via email. Send me an email with THREE TIMES when you’re available to meet. I’ll email you back with our set appointment time.

Editors who can assist you with ideas on behalf of your assigned newsroom:
Elizabeth Connor Stephens, City Editor, Missourian, 882-9951, stephensec@missouri.edu
Jeanne Abbott, Managing Editor, Missourian, 882-5741, abbottjm@missouri.edu
Ryan Famuliner, News Director, KBIA-FM, 882-3431, FamulinerR@missouri.edu
Nathan Lawrence, Digital Director, KBIA-FM, 882-3441, lawrencen@missouri.edu
Heather Lamb, Editorial Director, Vox, 882-9761, lambh@missouri.edu
Sara Shipley Hiles, Faculty Editor, Vox, 884-6432, hiless@missouri.edu
Jason McLure, Senior Editor, Global Journalist, mclurej@missouri.edu
Lynda Kraxberger, Associate Dean, Missouri School of Journalism, kraxbergerl@missouri.edu

Required Software

You will have access to production equipment through the Convergence checkout room (11 Walter Williams). This includes the Nikon D-7000/7100, Zoom H4N, tripods, wireless microphones, etc. You will also have access to the Futures Lab computers to edit on the Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro X, Photoshop, Audition, Illustrator and InDesign.  In order to be successful in this class, you will also need accounts on:




Snapchat (optional, though preferred)

WeChat (optional)

Banjo: Banjo is a social listening tool we will be using in class. You will receive an email to your MU email address with login credentials ahead of the start of the semester. Banjo requires that you have an Instagram account.

Slack: Slack should be used for questions about class, assignments, content you’re producing on behalf of your newsroom team or anything, really, that you feel the entire class could benefit from. In addition to subject-specific chatrooms, you have the ability to use the private instant message function to communicate with your classmates and me. While Slack doesn’t replace the need for face-to-face or email communication, it is best for quick questions or to discuss issues that might also benefit others. You will receive an invite from your professor to join our Slack group. Please check your Mizzou email to find that invite. You can access Slack using a web browser, desktop app and/or mobile app. All app downloads are free of charge.

Canvas: All readings, quizzes and writing assignments for this course will be administered through Canvas, the University of Missouri’s learning management system. You can access Canvas at http://missouri.instructure.com. Students who are actively enrolled in the course will be automatically added to the Canvas site. Students are encouraged to look through the Canvas site prior to the first day of class. There will be a short reading due ahead of the first session. Students unable to access Canvas should contact the University of Missouri’s Help Desk online (live chat support available) or by phone at 573-882-5000.

Required Texts

You are expected to keep up with news from the print, online and on-air services of the Missourian, KOMU, KBIA and their local competitors. Class discussions will sometimes focus on that coverage.