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UGC in education: enriching the curriculum and strengthening market communication

In today's digital age, educational marketing often incorporates user-generated content (UGC) – photos and videos created by students. Authentic content, crafted by genuine students, engages prospective students who seek a real, insider glimpse into student life at various schools.

A group of students producing a video in a library, as an example of UGC in education

However, the potential of UGC extends beyond marketing – it's a valuable form of learning within the curriculum. In the realm of education, creative student projects can serve as a compelling form of task-based learning (TBL). Students study a subject, collaborate on group projects, and present their findings via presentations, or even through engaging video presentations. This process transforms learning into an enjoyable, hands-on experience, embracing the ethos of "learning by doing".

But are we discussing curriculum or marketing primarily? First and foremost, it's about the curriculum. Class projects are designed with learning as the core objective, thoughtfully crafted by teachers. Yet, this doesn't negate the positive effects on a school's external communications that naturally arise. Students take pride in their projects and often willingly share them with their close circles. Schools can responsibly seek permission to showcase some of this content on official communication channels, such as websites and social media.

Read on to explore the dynamic role of UGC in education, seamlessly blending into both the curriculum and the communication plan.

The power of student-created content

Educational institutions are continually seeking innovative approaches to enrich the learning experience for their students. A potent method to implement task-based learning (TBL) is integrating audiovisual projects into the school curriculum. Assigning projects that necessitate students to generate their own content – photo presentations, videos, blogs, or podcasts – empowers educators to tap into students' creative potential. This form of content aligns with what the media and marketing industry terms as user-generated content (UGC).

Advantages of audiovisual projects in task-based learning

  1. Active engagement: Tasking students with creating content fosters active participation and engagement with the subject matter. Students invest time and effort into projects that are enjoyable and align with their interests.

  2. Hands-on learning: Content creation enables students to apply theoretical knowledge practically and concisely present the main points. This reinforces learning and facilitates a more effective grasp of concepts.

  3. Collaboration and communication: Projects necessitate collaboration and effective communication within a group, honing teamwork and interpersonal skills crucial for both academic and professional settings.

  4. Creative expression: Visual projects provide a platform for students to showcase creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving abilities. It encourages thinking outside the box and presenting ideas in unique and compelling ways.

  5. Authentic assessment: Evaluating projects enables educators to assess students more comprehensively. It goes beyond traditional exams and papers, offering a broader view of a student's engagement with the subject.

Fostering a culture of sharing

Integrating audiovisual projects – or UGC – into the curriculum not only benefits students but also has a wider impact. Students frequently share their projects with friends, family, and the broader community, enhancing the school's visibility. This sharing cultivates a culture of creativity and knowledge dissemination.

Showcasing student achievements and creativity

Educational institutions can request permission from students to share their projects on various communication channels. This organic promotion serves as a testament to the quality of education provided, and enhances the institution's image, including among prospective students. Responsible sharing ensures students and parents are comfortable with school projects being shared, emphasizing the celebration of their achievements.

Conclusion on UGC in education: It enriches the curriculum and strengthens communication

Student producing UGC with a video camera in an education setting

Integrating student-created content into the school curriculum is a win-win for both students and educational institutions. It promotes active engagement, fosters creativity, and cultivates essential skills for the future. Additionally, by enabling students to share their content creations within their communities as UGC, the institution's visibility and reputation are organically elevated. This dual impact not only enriches the learning environment but also instills a sense of pride and achievement among students.

As we progress, the potentially symbiotic relationship between student projects, the curriculum, and external communications can play an integral part in shaping a more engaging and effective educational landscape, appealing to both educators and marketers in the sector.

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