Faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment
School of Computing
28 September 2022
For full instructions on how to apply for postgraduate short courses, please contact the Centre for Flexible and Continuing Education - FlexEd@ulster.ac.uk
This course identifies how an online digital communication strategy can enable an organisation to critically evaluate online performance.
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.
In this section
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.
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.
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.
This course requires on-campus attendance at Belfast campus, starting September 2022, with days and times to be confirmed.
Normally, a degree in, for example, Communication, Business, Information and Communication Technology or a related technical area. Other degree areas may be accepted (please contact us to check).
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
The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.
Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:
As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until near the start date and may be subject to change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days of attendance will often be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.
Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10- or 20-credit modules and postgraduate course typically 15- or 30-credit modules.
The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.
Postgraduate Masters courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.
Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.
Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be via one method or a combination e.g. examination and coursework . Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes. You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessment. The precise assessment will depend on the module and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification and the assessment timetable. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Normally, a module will have four learning outcomes, and no more than two items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised.
The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6 (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).
Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Masters degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.
All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study. In Masters degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.
Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.
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 (20%) or Lecturers (55%).
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) by Advanced HE - 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 2021-2022.
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