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Overview

This course identifies how an online digital communication strategy can enable an organisation to critically evaluate online performance.

Summary

In an increasingly competitive, connected and cluttered marketplace, organisations must pursue new business models and seek to communicate with consumers in a way that engenders trust, loyalty and cooperation. The unique properties of digital marketing communication technologies and services are considered more conducive to fostering consumer dialogue and relationships than traditional mass media tactics. Drawing upon academic theory and international best practice models and case-studies, this course establishes an effective multidisciplinary foundation for evaluating effective digital marketing communication approaches and technologies to support strategic business goals. Partcipants will critique the online presence of organisations in a variety of contexts and will understand the interrelationship between communication, design and technology in maintaining an effective online customer experience.

This course can be taken individually or combined over a period of time towards a Postgraduate Certificate of Professional Development.

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Belfast campus

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About this course

In this section

About

This course will enable participants to understand the characteristics of the digital consumer and changing market environment, and explore in-depth the attendant challenges and opportunities presented by digital marketing approaches and technologies. Drawing upon academic theory and international best practice models and case examples, participants will have the opportunity to objectively analyse and appraise organisational engagement in digital marketing communication.

Analytical, creative and information communication technology (ICT) skills will be developed through the critical assessment of online performance. Crucially, participants will understand and appreciate the interrelationship between communication, design and technology in maintaining a customer centric, user-centred online presence.

This course comprises the following themes and components:

The digital consumer

Researching and understanding the expectations, motivations and behaviour of the digital consumer.
The changing market environment and the prosumer.
Consumer motivation for digital engagement, including user generated content (UGC).
Customer centricity and the value concept.
User personas.
Customer mapping and digital journeys.
Online consumer behaviour models and theories.
Online branding and brand equity.
Optimising the online experience; online value propositions and customer centric content Understanding how the internet can be leveraged to augment the value proposition and manage consumer interactions through multi-channel integration (e.g. Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, mobile apps, location technology).

The digital consumer experience

An introduction to the Internet and the World Wide Web.
An introduction to search engine technology and Search Engine Optimisation Developing digital consumer-orientated content.
An introduction to Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising.
Evaluating the effectiveness of digital presence Introduction to web analytics.

Linked programmes

PgDip/MSc Digital Media Communication, PgCertPD Postgraduate Certificate of Professional Development

Assessment

100% Coursework - Best Practice Report

The coursework is an individual assignment (3000 words) whereby the participant has the opportunity to apply theories and concepts of online digital communication by comparing and contrasting organisations’ websites within an industry sector of their choice, and evaluating the extent to which the case organisations' online presence support models of best practice. The coursework submission will be in two parts. In Part A of the coursework (1500 words), the participant will assess online communication including effectiveness of customer targeting, value proposition, and brand experience within the chosen websites. In Part B of the coursework (1500 words), the participant will assess the design, usability and optimisation of the websites.

Attendance

This course requires attendance on four individual Wednesdays from 1pm - 9pm on

Wednesday 25 September 2019

Wednesday 16 October 2019

Wednesday 13 November 2019

Wednesday 27 November 2019

Academic profile

The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 59% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.

Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (25%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (18%) or Lecturers (57%).

We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic staff (81%) are accredited fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.

The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise. The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff. This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.

Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.

Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.

Entry requirements

Normally, a degree in, for example, Communication, Business or related studies, Information and Communication Technology or a related technical area. Other degree areas may be accepted (please contact us to check).

English Language Requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English must meet the minimum English entrance requirements of the University and will need to provide recent evidence of this (certified within the last two years).

Most of our courses require a minimum English level of IELTS 6.0 or equivalent, with no band score under 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement.

Please see details of the English language qualifications and certificates we can accept - https://www.ulster.ac.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0005/177404/Other-english-language-tests-and-qualifications-2017.pdf

International applicants will also require a short-term study visa. Further information is available at https://www.ulster.ac.uk/international/visa-immigration

Start dates

  • 25 September 2019
How to apply

Academic profile

The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 59% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.

Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (25%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (18%) or Lecturers (57%).

We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic staff (81%) are accredited fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.

The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise. The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff. This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.

Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.

Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.

Apply

How to apply

The following page explains the postgraduate short course application procedure:

https://www.ulster.ac.uk/apply/how-to-apply/short-courses (choose postgraduate short courses)

Start dates

  • 25 September 2019

Fees and funding

In this section

Prices

Northern Ireland & EU:
£983.40
England, Scotland, Wales
and the Islands:
£983.40

International:
£2,343.30

Fees information

Information about how to pay for a course including different payment options is available at

https://www.ulster.ac.uk/finance/student/tuition-fees-payments

Scholarships, awards and prizes

Fee waivers may be available to those who meet the eligibility criteria. More information is available from FlexEd@ulster.ac.uk

Additional mandatory costs

Tuition fees and costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges), and normal living are a part of university life.

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses we make every effort to highlight them. These may include residential visits, field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering) inoculations, security checks, computer equipment, uniforms, professional memberships etc.

We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free wifi is also available on each of the campuses.

There will be some additional costs to being a student which cannot be itemised and these will be different for each student. You may choose to purchase your own textbooks and course materials or prefer your own computer and software. Printing and binding may also be required. There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines. Additional costs vary from course to course.

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs as well as tuition fees.

Please contact the course team for more information.

Disclaimer

  1. The University endeavours to deliver courses and programmes of study in accordance with the description set out in this prospectus. The University’s prospectus is produced at the earliest possible date in order to provide maximum assistance to individuals considering applying for a course of study offered by the University. The University makes every effort to ensure that the information contained in the prospectus is accurate but it is possible that some changes will occur between the date of printing and the start of the academic year to which it relates. Please note that the University’s website is the most up-to-date source of information regarding courses and facilities and we strongly recommend that you always visit the website before making any commitments.
  2. Although reasonable steps are taken to provide the programmes and services described, the University cannot guarantee the provision of any course or facility and the University may make variations to the contents or methods of delivery of courses, discontinue, merge or combine courses and introduce new courses if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Such circumstances include (but are not limited to) industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key staff, changes in legislation or government policy including changes, if any, resulting from the UK departing the European Union, withdrawal or reduction of funding or other circumstances beyond the University’s reasonable control.
  3. If the University discontinues any courses, it will use its best endeavours to provide a suitable alternative course. In addition, courses may change during the course of study and in such circumstances the University will normally undertake a consultation process prior to any such changes being introduced and seek to ensure that no student is unreasonably prejudiced as a consequence of any such change.
  4. The University does not accept responsibility (other than through the negligence of the University, its staff or agents), for the consequences of any modification or cancellation of any course, or part of a course, offered by the University but will take into consideration the effects on individual students and seek to minimise the impact of such effects where reasonably practicable.
  5. The University cannot accept any liability for disruption to its provision of educational or other services caused by circumstances beyond its control, but the University will take all reasonable steps to minimise the resultant disruption to such services.