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Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas

Mobile Journalism: How to use your phone to produce great videos and build a social audience

Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas via Independent


This resource page features course content from the Knight Center for Journalism in the America's massive open online course (MOOC) titled "Mobile Journalism: How to use your phone to produce great videos and build a social audience." This four-week course took place from February 4 to March 3, 2019. We are now making the content free and available to students who took the course and anyone else who is interested in learning how to discover amazing stories online, capture and edit videos with your phone and build engagement strategies so your content travels online.

The course, which was supported by the Knight Foundation, was taught by Yusuf Omar. He created and curated the content for the course, which includes video classes, readings, exercises, and more.



Module 1: Social Discovery

How to find amazing stories online and from around the world, using the latest techniques and tools to discover and verify user-generated content.

In this week:

  • Develop original angles and story ideas.
  • Learn about constructive journalism and solutions-based storytelling.
  • Experience using new techniques and tools to find and aggregate videos online.
  • Understand online copyright policies.
  • Apply fact checking principles to verify user-generated content.


Module 2: Social Videography

This is all about social publishing and how to capture the best possible content with your phone. A few small tips can make a really big difference in producing professional quality videos with the device you already own.

In this week you will learn to:

  • Learn mobile videography techniques, from stability and framing to sound and sequencing.
  • Build Instagram/Snapchat Stories strategies and explore global best practices.


Module 3: Social Editing

Now that you’ve shot a video, it’s time to edit your masterpiece and get it ready for various social media platforms. We’ll go from the storyboarding and scripting process, all the way to exporting.

In this week you will learn to:

  • Create video storyboards, shot-lists and scripts for social videos.
  • Practice mobile video editing for various online video formats like explainers.


Module 4: Social Engagement

You’ve done all the hard work, made an amazing mobile video. Now it’s time to share, share, share. The audience isn’t just going to come to you, we need the story to find them! This module shares the secrets of optimizing your content for social platforms and ensuring your stories bubble to the top of people’s social media timelines.

In this week you will learn to:

  • Identify how social videos differ on each platform.
  • Create derivative content strategies so your content can be easily repurposed.
  • Understand how to help your content beat the algorithms.
  • Build engagement and sharing strategies to increase the reach of your content.
  • Collect the right metrics for success and measure the impact of your work.
  • Make thumbnails, headlines and hashtags.
  • Mobile journalism workflows and quality control.



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