This assignment provides two days of instruction opening up the issue of digital privacy, digital surveillance, digital citizenship, and digital literacy. It differentiates opportunities for collaborative and individual student inquiry about their roles as both digital citizens and social mediators where increasingly lines of public and private, school, work, and home are becoming blurred.
The assignment (with exemplars) is a product of this deep thinking that will require three additional days (minimum) of class time, including internet access. I usually teach the instructional portion of the assignment on a Monday and Tuesday, set aside Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday for computer lab work periods, and set a target due date on the following Monday. This allows students to complete their assignment on the weekend.
STEP 1: Students research and draw inferences about their personal digital footprints and online presence
STEP 2: Students “rebrand" their personal profile for one of two different audiences: a university admissions committee OR a potential employer by creating a “fake” Facebook, Twitter, or Tumblr account
STEP 3: Students write an explication of their specific choices, a projection of their appeal to potential audiences, and broader philosophical reflection about their experience with this assignment and what they have learned about themselves in the age of digital privacy and surveillance.
This is a highly engaging and relevant assignment that my senior English students rate as their favourite in the course, and I'm certain yours will too!