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Queensland University of Technology

Social Media Analytics: Using Data to Understand Public Conversations

Queensland University of Technology via FutureLearn

This course may be unavailable.


Learn how to use powerful digital tools to analyse conversations on Twitter.

What are tweets and the cultural politics of Twitter? Learn to use TAGS and discuss the implications of accessing social media data.

What are the pros and cons of analysing social media data in real time? Learn how to use Tableau to analyse data, identify trends and patterns and explore how social media have been used in times of crisis and during political campaigns.

During this social media analytics course, you will use Gephi to visualise data networks, discuss the benefits of using digital tools to analyse social media data and consider how such analyses may be supported by other methods.

This social media analytics course is for anyone who wants to develop a critical understanding of how digital media are used and gain skills using three digital tools. This course will allow learners without coding skills to access, analyse and visualise their own social media data.

Everything you need to succeed in this course is provided or can be downloaded for free. There is no special prior experience or knowledge required to join in. To make the most of this course, you will need to:

  • install or access TAGS, Tableau and Gephi
  • use a laptop or desktop computer so you can install and complete activities with these tools
  • ensure you have both a Google and Twitter account.

We will guide you through the set-up of these tools, step by step, as you progress through the content of the course. Using these tools will really give you a powerful learning experience, letting you explore your own interests and put the theory to the test.


  • Understanding and gathering
    • Understanding #conversations
    • Gathering Twitter data
    • What have you learnt?
  • Analysing
    • Twitter metrics
    • Making sense of data
    • What have you learnt?
  • Visualising
    • Social Networks
    • Seeing the big picture
    • What have you learnt?

Taught by

Tim Highfield, Axel Bruns and Jean Burgess


4.0 rating, based on 2 Class Central reviews

5 rating at FutureLearn based on 1 rating

Start your review of Social Media Analytics: Using Data to Understand Public Conversations

  • A nice course interested in understanding basic social media analytics, covering both the approach, and some easily accessible tools (Tableau and Gephi in particular are a nice tool for people looking to grow their experience).

    I found it a bit slow to start with, but that may be because it wasn't a new area, and I was looking forward to the practical exercises - which there were lots of.

    A bonus for me - all the tools used run under Linux.
  • Ashley Eidler

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