Module code: SOC2104

Module Overview

This module introduces students to the forms, functions, role and use of social media in contemporary society. Students will explore the role of social media in key aspects of society, including social life, politics, culture and celebrity, and students will develop key skills in analysing these phenomena. Centering both employability and the further development of digital capabilities, students will be introduced to a range of social media careers, and create a social media campaign plan as part of their assessment.

Module provider


Module Leader

DAS Ranjana (Sociology)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 106

Lecture Hours: 11

Seminar Hours: 11

Guided Learning: 11

Captured Content: 11

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative themes which may be amended for each year of study include:

  • Introduction to Social Media

  • Research: Qualitative & Quantitative

  • Identity

  • News & Politics

  • Social Media Research Report

  • Global Online Communities

  • Celebrities & Social Media Fan Cultures

  • Influencer Culture & Microcelebrities

  • Social Media Careers (Panel)

  • Advertising and Public Relations

  • Social Media Management Plan

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Group Social Media Analysis Portfolio 40
Coursework Individual Social Media Management Plan 60

Alternative Assessment

Alternative assessment for the group assessment: The student will pick a social media post (e.g. Instagram post, TikTok reel, X post) and analyse them in depth to demonstrate their critical understanding of social media research methods. Students will explore socio-cultural implications such as: What are the potential encoded and decoded messages? This assessment addresses LO1, LO2, and LO3.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate that they have met learning outcomes through the building of critical engagement with a wide range of social media theories, concepts, strategies and research skills. Assessment 1, the Group Social Media Analysis Portfolio which enables students to demonstrate their research and analysis skills of social media content. Assessment 2, the Individual Social Media Management Plan facilitates student’s practical skills to create their own social media campaign and enhance their employability skills.


  Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • Group Social Media Analysis Portfolio (40%)
    In groups, students will pick three distinct social media posts (e.g. Instagram post, TikTok reel, X post) and analyse them in depth to demonstrate their critical understanding of social media research methods. Students will explore socio-cultural implications such as: What are the potential encoded and decoded messages? This assessment addresses LO1, LO2, and LO3

  • Individual Social Media Management Plan (60%)
    Students will create a social media campaign for their chosen organisation. This could be to sell a product or service, encourage a behaviour (e.g. to vote for a political party), promote a medium (e.g. a film), a public relations objective (e.g. influencing publics), awareness of social issues/calls to activism. Students will demonstrate how their campaign will develop over time, and address the different facets of the campaign. This assessment addresses LO1, LO2 and LO4.


Formative Assessment & Feedback

Students will receive regular verbal feedback in class through individual and group tasks. There will also be opportunities in class for students to receive verbal feedback on their assignment preparation through class activities.


Written feedback on the group social media portfolio will be given to help students to feedforward on their social media analysis skills which will contribute to their future beyond their degree. Written feedback on the individual social media management plan will provide them feedback on their practical approach to social media which will also contribute to their future beyond their degree. This will be achieved through in-text comments on the assignments, as well as overall feedback.

Module aims

  • Develop social sciences research skills that enable students to critically analyse social media
  • Enable students to critically understand, discuss and evaluate contemporary debates about the role of social media in society, including politics, culture, celebrity, and social life
  • Provide students with contemporary, global case studies to explain social media theories and concepts
  • Demonstrate social media career pathways to students

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Demonstrate a critical understanding of the socio-cultural impacts of social media on individual and social life CK
002 Analyse the social, economic, cultural and political factors shaping the design and use of social media and their forms and functions in contemporary society CK
003 Knowledge of key qualitative and quantitative social media research methods CKT
004 Demonstrate critical social media management and campaign skills and the ability to critically reflect on them CPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

Develop student’s knowledge, skills and capabilities around social media and its socio-cultural implications, employability skills and critical thinking. This is achieved through interactive sessions that include lectures, seminars, and individual and group activities.

Key concepts, theories and social media research and management approaches in the module will be outlined in each lecture, one building on the next. Interactive sessions will introduce students to key social media theories and case studies from diverse cultural contexts. Reading, research skills, individual and group tasks will be set to enhance student understanding and facilitate their own analysis skills around the socio-cultural impact of social media. Social media management plan tasks will contribute to their resourcefulness and employability.

The module is also addressing career pathways in social media to enhance student employability skills and awareness, including designing their own social media campaign and networking with social media professionals.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: SOC2104

Other information

The Department of Sociology is committed to developing graduates with strengths in Employability, Digital Capabilities, Global and Cultural Capabilities, Sustainability, and Resourcefulness and Resilience. This module enhances students skills in Digital Capabilities, Employability, Global and Cultural Capabilities and Resourcefulness and Resilience.


Digital Capabilities

A critical understanding of social media is key to a Media and Communications graduate skill set, and this module builds on and further develops student knowledge of the contemporary media environment. Students will critically analyse social media digital communication, and further develop their social media management skills through the final assessment.



The module enhances student employability in three key ways: the further development of transferable skills, including team work, communication skills, and time management; a social media careers panel that gives students the opportunity to consider a range of careers related to social media and network with professionals in the field; and the final assessment, a social media management plan that asks students to develop a social media campaign as would be done in a professional context.


Global and Cultural Capabilities

The module approaches social media as an explicitly global phenomenon, and as such students will engage with a range of international case studies throughout the module, ranging from celebrity to politics and social media protest phenomena. Students are encouraged to consider global and international phenomena in their research report assessment to further develop critical analytical skills required for a globalised contemporary media landscape.


Resourcefulness and Resilience

Students will build on previous research method training and encounter new and creative ways to research social media in a supportive class environment. The group assessment will challenge students to work productively in new environments with structured support throughout the module.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Media and Communication BSc (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2025/6 academic year.