TAR UC students get unconventional to help peers become more Google-savvy

Google-infused course assignments with offbeat edu-tainment videos

Inspired by the unconventional stylings and humour of local YouTube creators, students from Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TAR UC) took a dive into offbeat content creation. From creating a #MagnetChallenge that celebrates YouTube as a social tool, to producing a drama that shares the benefits of the Google Keep app, these TAR UC students pulled out all the stops to teach their peers how to be more Google-savvy.

For the past three months, Google worked with the Faculty of Communication And Creative Industries (FCCI) of TAR UC to offer up a challenge for second year Public Relations students undertaking a Bachelor’s Degree to run an online awareness campaign called Cool Tools 4 Skool, which officially kicked-off in a Google workshop on June 8, 2018.

As part of their coursework, five teams of students were required to work on the campaign from the ground up to educate their peers on useful Google tools in order to help their campus lives. Each group of students were asked to create two videos and manage online engagements to promote assigned Google apps in the following themes: 1) Plan Your Time Better 2) Ace Your Assignment 3) Socialize More 4) Be a Better Teamplayer! and 5) Manage My Mobile.

The students had a total of 12 weeks to complete their assignment, out of which, they had seven weeks to research, plan and create their content, and an additional two and a half weeks for uploading content and managing feedback, with the rest of the time spent on digital campaign analysis and reporting.

“When conducting lessons and in guiding the students, we placed great emphasis on realistic planning and project management, while trying to ensure that they are able to learn the practical elements of an online PR campaign,” said Lim Siz Siz, Program Leader for Public Relations in the Department of Communication, FCCI, TAR UC.

“We also made sure our students came away from lessons with increased digital literacy, as they were encouraged to use digital tools, like Google Forms, to conduct surveys for their research, and Google Classroom, to communicate and collaborate at every stage of the project,” she continued.

While the project had significant implications on the students’ grades, Google Malaysia gave the students creative liberties in their content planning and creation, thus resulting in ideas that were zany and creative.

Students took inspiration from a variety of pop culture trends. Elements from the video games PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS (PUBG), Mario and Streetfighter, and common Asian horror films tropes made appearances in the students’ videos as they tried to balance educational and entertainment elements, while raising awareness for their assigned apps in a way that would engage their target audiences.

The student life can be a battlefield. The students featured elements from the wildly popular PUBG game to help draw in audiences.

“At Google we’ve always felt that being useful is great, but being useful and fun is even better. The amazingly entertaining and educational content that the students have produced for this coursework and campaign has truly embodied the hard-to-pin-down ‘Googleyness’ side of Google; bravo to each and every one of them,” said Zeffri Yusof, Head of Communications and Public Affairs at Google Malaysia.

Overall, the students achieved 91,400 impressions on YouTube and Facebook. In the end, the team that was assigned to promote “Socialize More” was found to have had the best overall performance.

“What they have achieved together in terms of organic reach all within 3 plus weeks is no mean feat and exceptionally impressive for a student campaign,” Zeffri added.

Team with the best overall performance. The “Socialize More” team won the opportunity to visit Google Malaysia for their consistent and quality work in research, planning, creating and evaluating their videos, YouTube Magnet Challenge X International Friendship Day and Preserve your friendship!

While all the student participants received Google certificates for their work, the winning team will be treated to an exclusive visit to the Google Malaysia office soon. In hopes of helping the digital ecosystem by nurturing the pool of digital-savvy talent in Malaysia, Google collaborated with these students with the intention to increase digital literacy among students and produce more well-rounded fresh graduates amongst the student participants, while meaningfully impacting the students to get the most out of their time at college.

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