Welcome to the first part of Moving to UOW‘s annotated bibliography!
Faces of UOW is a Facebook and Tumblr page that is designed to express the past and present feelings and goals of students who attend the university. It is platform for individuals who are featured to not only feel confident but also to show relatable people to those who are thinking of attending the University of Wollongong.
Faces of UOW is not a conventional means of promotion for the university. Most advertising consists of handpicked students who are high achievers or fit the look of the ‘everyday’ University of Wollongong student. This Facebook page illustrates the struggles of university students both from an educational viewpoint and a personal one. My DA aims to show not only a real UOW student, but also show that feeling scared or alone because of moving away from home is stressful. I think for any user based page or site it is important for people to have the option to submit their own story, not only to get across their idea or point in an organised way but also give a broader view of university students.
Humans of New York is a Facebook and Instagram page that mainly focuses on the lives of those who live or are visitng New York. The page’s creator, Brandon Stanton, also travels to different countries – majority being war-torn nations – and discusses problems with refugees or with those who are attempting to seek asylum.
It is a good basis for my Moving to UOW page as it is similar in nature. However, although it does rely on user contribution to a certain degree, Stanton goes out onto the streets in New York to openly find those who would like to contribute rather than wait for people for stories or photos. Although Moving to UOW is aimed at a smaller demographic than Humans of New York, I think it is important to have a page that talks about local people and other users can recognise and support students that are featured.
A previous BCM digital artifact, Pop-Up is a series of YouTube videos designed to gauge student opinions about a range of different topics. This can be from light-hearted discussions to in-depth conversations about life, social issues and loss (see above). Pop-Up, like Faces of UOW and Humans of New York, is reliant on user contribution and when executed successfully can become a popular and well-known site.
However, spontaneously approaching people for an opinion can be daunting as people may be nervous or struggling to think of ideas to respond with. Moving to UOW enables the user to contribute and formulate an answer without feeling any pressures or nervousness in a face-to-face setting.
This Reach Out Australia page discusses the possible issues or problems that can arise from moving away to study at uni. It gives readers advice on how to cope with moving away as well as contact numbers for those who are really struggling and how to make safe decisions when you have moved to a new place with little to no support systems.
Although it is helpful for those who are struggling or are considering moving, I found that it lacked a ‘real person’ perspective and could be interpreted as hypothetical. Moving to UOW aims to show prospective and current students the experiences of those who have actually made the move and how they have dealt with the problems they have faced. Although the digital artifact does not provide psychological advice, it does provide
Shannon Harris (better known as Shaanxo on YouTube) is a make-up artist/beauty vlogger/everyday blogger who discusses her career and lifestyle on a series of social media platforms such as YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. She has amassed a huge cult following online and has over two million subscribers as well as hundreds of thousands of views per video.
One of the reasons Shaanxo was part of my inspiration for Moving to UOW was because of her willingness to open up about experiences and discuss the hardships she has faced in her life. This was the main aim of my DA was to talk about experiences and adversities faced because of a big lifestyle change. Unlike Harris’s vlogs, it was vital for Moving to UOW to be focused solely on user contribution and I believed that YouTube could not offer me the same focus that Facebook could.