Lifelong Learning for a Brighter World

Ngoc Nguyen, McMaster University Continuing Education Marketing graduate Ngoc Nguyen, McMaster University Continuing Education Marketing graduate


There's marketing in everything.

Fast track to earn your diploma in 12 months!
*Not applicable for Digital Marketing concentration

PUB 111 - Building Social Media Relationships C01

Academic Credit Value:
3 units
Course Delivery Mode:
Hours of Study:
39 hours
Course Prerequisite(s):
Course Anti-requisite(s):
Instructor Name:
(Derrick) Jared Lenover
Course Dates:
01/15/2019 - 04/02/2019

Required Course Materials:
Ann Handley and C.C. Chapman Wiley, 2nd Edition (2012) Ebook version is acceptable.
Optional Course Materials:
Course Description:
Social networking has become an integral part of marketing and PR. And with all the platforms, including blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, YouTube, podcasts, location-based apps like Foursquare and mobile, practitioners need to understand how to use the emerging tools and strategically integrate them into a communications plan that identifies and reaches the right influencers in an increasingly fragmented audience space.

Building Social Media Relationships defines the terminology for online communications, explores the current applications and tools available, identifies some of the community, legal and ethical concerns around social media use, and creates a framework for understanding how to successfully integrate it into a marketing communications program.

The course will be taught in a lecture format with breakouts for discussions, case studies and online analysis, as well as guest speakers, project work and group discussions.

Learning Outcomes:

At the end of this course, students will understand how to:

  • Categorize and evaluate the features and applicability of current social media tools available to public relations and marketing practitioners.
  • Assess the relationship-building options of social media and apply them to industry examples.
  • Develop strategies for reaching diverse audiences using an integrated communications approach.
  • Critique the current measurement and evaluation tactics for social media campaigns.
  • Compare ethical practice with current social media case scenarios.
Course Evaluation
Students are required to provide feedback by completing course reaction/evaluation surveys. Course evaluations are administered through an online resource (Survey Monkey) and are distributed to students by either the Program Associate or Program Manager. Course instructors are not involved in the distribution or collection of course evaluations. In all cases, students will remain anonymous.
Course Format:

Book Review and Presentation 10%
Quizzes 20%
Blogging Project 50%
Class Participation 20%
Peer Evaluation 5% Bonus

Descriptions of these components will be given in class.

Book Review and Presentation
Students will select a recently published social media book to read and review -- summarizing it and citing its relevance to marketing communications. Students will present their review to the class.

Short, weekly quizzes will test your understanding of key terminology and concepts discussed in class or appearing in designated readings.

Blog Project
This project, which is the foundation of the course, will help students understand how to create and develop a blog and build a community. Students will select a topic of interest to them and will be required to post blog entries, respond to comments and comment on other students’ blogs. Students will be required to update their blogs at least two times per week during the course (minimum 20 entries).

Class Participation
Marks will be given based on the quantity and quality of students’ participation in class and online. This can include regular, weekly activity and participation in special tasks assigned throughout the semester.

Peer Evaluation
Students can earn up to 5% bonus on their final marks based on peer evaluations done twice during the semester. The criteria for the peer evaluations will be given in class. (Final marks cannot exceed 100%.)

Assignment Submission:
Course assignments are submitted in class on the specified due date
Late Coursework:
Late assignments will be subject to a 2% per day late penalty (includes weekends and holidays) for up to seven (7) days. After this date, no assignments will be accepted and a grade of zero (0) will be applied.  Extensions for course work must be approved by the instructor before the due date (see Academic Regulations below), and will be granted for illness or emergencies only. Students may be asked to submit supporting documentation for an extension request. 

Policy & Procedures:

Academic Regulations (Attendance, Coursework, Tests/Exams):

In accordance to McMaster University’s General Academic Regulations, “it is imperative that students make every effort to meet the originally scheduled course requirements and it is a student’s responsibility to write examinations as scheduled.” Therefore, all students are expected to attend and complete the specific course requirements (i.e. attendance, assignments, and tests/exams) listed in the course outline on or by the date specified. Students who need to arrange for coursework accommodation, as a result of medical, personal or family reasons, must contact the course instructor within 48 hours of the originally scheduled due date. It is the student’s responsibility to contact the Program Manager/Program Associate to discuss accommodations and procedures related to deferred tests and/or examinations within 48 hours of the originally scheduled test/exam, as per policy. Failure to contact the course instructor, in the case of missed coursework, or the Program Manager/Program Associate, in the case of a missed test/examination, within the specified five 48 hours window will result in a grade of zero (0) on the coursework/exam and no further consideration will be granted.

*Note: Supporting documentation will be required but will not ensure approval of accommodation(s).

Academic Integrity

(Please note that CCE will adhere to a zero tolerance application of the policy)

You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity.  Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that result or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: “Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty”), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university.

It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at

]The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:

1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained, including copying solution sets.
2. Improper collaboration in group work.
3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.

Academic Accommodations:
Students who require academic accommodation should contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS).  Staff at SAS will evaluate your learning needs and, if required, will provide a letter for the course instructor. It is the student’s responsibility to inform the instructor and Program Manager of any accommodation requirements at the start of the course.  For more information, contact SAS at ext. 28652 or visit
On-line Elements:
Material for this course may be accessed through McMaster's new learning system, Avenue2Learn (A2L). Your instructor will notify you if, or when, you will be required to login and use the tools and materials available through this on-line system. Computers are available for use in various locations across McMaster main campus including all libraries and Computer Labs.
To access Avenue to Learn go to: .  You will be required to enter your MAC ID (login and password). To activate your MAC ID, contact University Technology Services.
Course Changes:
The instructor reserves the right to modify elements of the course and will notify students accordingly. 
Course Withdrawal Policy:
Policies related to dropping a course and course withdrawals are posted to the Centre for Continuing Education's program webpage, FAQs & Policies (
Storm Closure Policy:

In the event of inclement weather, the Centre for Continuing Education will abide by the University’s Storm Closure Policy:, and will only close if the University is closed.  All in-class courses, exams and room bookings by internal and external clients will be cancelled if the Centre for Continuing Education is closed.  On-line courses will take place as scheduled.

Grading Scale:


Equivalent Grade Point

Equivalent Percentages














































Course Schedule:


 Week  Topic  Assessments Due
Week 1

Introductions and Getting Started


Week 2

Introduction to Blogging


Week 3

Online Communities and Content Creation


Week 4

Online Communities and Content Creation


Week 5

Measurement and Evaluation


Week 6

Ethics and Policy


Week 7

Book Review Presentations

Book Reviews Due

Week 8

Responsiveness and Authenticity


Week 9 

Managing Negativity


Week 10

Building Communities


Week 11

Integrating with the Bigger Communications Picture


Week 12

Experts Panel


Week 13 

Adaption and Wrap-up

Blog Project Due