Knight Center
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Course "Social Media Analytics for Journalists" will teach how to measure your success online; registration open


After years of working in online journalism production and audience engagement, journalist Amanda Zamora is ready to share lessons learned about how journalists can optimize content for social platforms and measure audience response.

“Social Media Analytics for Journalists: Measuring Your Success” is a four-week Big Online Course (BOC) offered in English by the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas and taught by Zamora. It runs from March 7 to April 3 and costs $95, which is payable by credit card.

“We've got more access to social analytics than ever, which is great to see. But all the social data in the world won't help if we don't know what to do with it. This course is designed to help journalists make sense of social analytics and find and test strategies that can help grow and engage their audience,” Zamora said.

Course instructor Amanda Zamora

Registration is available here and space is limited.

Zamora, senior engagement editor at ProPublica, previously taught this course in April 2015. She was also one of the instructors of the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) "Social Media for Journalists," which ran in 2014 and had 6,300 registered students from 149 countries.

This iteration of the course will update students on new analytics coming out of social platforms and will spend more hands-on time crunching numbers, according to Zamora. Students will also hear from social news editors about how they are using social analytics and tools to experiment with strategies for gaining a bigger audience.

The weekly modules will show students how to use data to understand their social audience, set goals for professional and/or newsroom use of social media, optimize content, engage audiences and analyze audience data to monitor performance and progress.

The BOC "Social Media Analytics for Journalists" is open to anyone, but students should have at least some familiarity with publishing on social networks – whether as an individual journalist, an editor or a social producer/editor.

“This is a great crash course in social data whether you’re an individual trying to build a brand for your work or whether you work on audience engagement in the newsroom,” Zamora said.

Zamora will teach courses via video lectures. The class is asynchronous, meaning that students can view modules and complete activities at their own pace throughout the week, but the instructor has offered recommended deadlines. Students are also required to read weekly materials and complete weekly quizzes. Discussion forums are available on the site for students to speak with each other and the course instructor. 

Students can order a certificate of completion if they meet all of the course requirements. The certificate is awarded by the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas, but no formal course credit of any kind is associated with the certificate.

More than 65,000 people from 160 countries have benefited from the MOOC program launched in October 2012 by the Knight Center. Before that, from 2003 to 2012, the Center trained more than 7,000 journalists in Latin America and the Caribbean through online courses offered to limited groups of participants.

The Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas was created in 2002 by Professor Rosental Alves, who holds the Knight Chair in Journalism and the UNESCO Chair in Communication at the University of Texas at Austin School of Journalism. In the past, the Center was financed by major grants from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, as well as other donors, such as Open Society Foundations. Currently, the Center receives support from the University of Texas at Austin's Moody College of Communication and donations from the public.

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