Content Creation: Web-based Tools


The following is a sample assignment created for my ED 653: Instructional Design class. The assignment is intended to be a final project for a freshman level writing intensive course titled “Writing Across the Curriculum.” For the final project students are being asked to create a PSA (public service announcement) about a topic of interest and a written reflection on the rhetorical choices made during the creation of the PSA.

After conducting research about a topic related to social justice, students will identify one problem they see. For example, a student researching food insecurity among children in the United States might choose to do a PSA about the practice of “lunch-shaming.”

In their PSA, they will strive to raise awareness about the problem and will also propose one or more solutions.


A PSA is bascially a persuasive online narrative presentation.  For our purposes you should think of it as a way in which you synthesize your research from the semester and use it to do the following:

  1. Explain the problem you identified
  2. Propose one or more solutions to the problem
  3. Explain why you believe your solutions to be plausible

You will craft your argument using the classical rhetorical techniques of ethos, pathos, and logos. You will need to incorporate evidence from your sources to support your arguments.

For your presentation software, you will have a few options from which to choose. Please be forewarned that you must select one of these options. All of these options have FREE versions. You do NOT have to pay for anything to use them. Please not also that you will likely have to spend some time learning how to use them. Be sure that you budget this into your work schedule.

Software Options

  1. Adobe Spark
  2. Powtoon
  3. Focusky
  4. Pixton
  5. Screencastify (needs to be used in conjunction with another presentation program)

Presentation Length: Approximately 5 minutes

Special Notes: Your presentation must include both video and audio components. If you select to use one of the cartoon creation programs, like Pixton, you can overlay the audio using Screencastify. You will be asked to submit a scene list for the first Peer Review and a script for the second Peer Review.

Written Reflection

After you have completed your PSA, you will then compose a written reflection in which you will explain the rhetorical choices made during the creation of the PSA. Some possible questions to consider are:

  1. Who was your intended audience? What were their needs?
  2. Why did you use those particular rhetorical strategies?
  3. Why did you use that particular software?
  4. Why did you make the choices you made about the visuals used in the PSA?
  5. Why did you design the script/narration in the way you did?

Length: 500 words minimum


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