You can now get a degree in the UK to learn to become a social media influencer
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A university is offering the first ever UK degree which will teach people how to become a professional social media influencer.
TikTok, Instagram, Youtube, Facebook, X, Snapchat . . . there are numerous popular platforms and therefore numerous opportunities for users to become influencers on. But what was once a role people fell into by accident, it has now become a career aspiration for many young people.
So, one university in Ireland has decided to help people get their foot on that particular career ladder by offering a degree in content creation and social media. So, what exactly do we know about this degree; what will students learn and when does the course start? Here’s everything we know so far.
Which university is offering the content creation degree?
The degree will be available at the South East Technological University (SETU) in Carlow, in the south-east of Ireland.
What will students learn during the degree?
Students will learn a variety of skills by studying this degree, and there are a number of “diverse courses” on offer including creative video, celebrity studies, psychology, data analytics, podcasting and work experience. Those who complete it will be able to “start an energising media job in the worlds of business, campaigning, selling and influencing,” according to SETU. The university claims that “your career in digital media will be launched by taking part in our exciting new programme focusing on content creation and the harnessing of social media power.”
The degree description on the SETU website also promises that “we will help you professionalise your practice so that it transforms from hobby to career” and students will “learn to become an expert in social media theory and practice”.
The degree will give people the skills they need to gain a job in content creation and communications, including content writer, journalist, social media marketing, influencing or digital design.
Modules on offer throughout the course include social media entrepreneurship, where students will learn to “foster the attributes of resilience, self-reliance, creativity and innovation to respond to current, future and imagined possibilities within online environments”, and social psychology, where students will be encouraged to “examine how they present themselves to others and how they interpret social situations”.
There are also modules in crisis management, where students will look at “the importance of a social media strategy incorporating a crisis management plan”. In the final year of the degree, students will also have an opportunity to undertake a work placement or spend time studying abroad.
Speaking to Irish broadcaster RTÉ, Doctor Eleanor O'Leary, lecturer in media and communications at the university and the programme director, said there is a growing interest in the area both from potential students and employers. She said graduates of the course will be equipped to either work for themselves as a self-employed influencer or in creating content for a company or organisation.
She added that the course will educate students on how to maintain an audience online and how to work with business to monetise that as an influencer. “As someone who 'stars', creating content at home or by themselves, they may not have any understanding of that whole part of the industry where there are contracts and agencies, and business involved,” she said.
How long will the degree last?
The degree will last three years.
When will the degree begin?
The degree is due to welcome its first students in September 2024. Applications to the course can be made from November 2023.
How can I find out more information about the degree?
Please contact Dr Eleanor O'Leary via email at [email protected] for more information about the course.