Samu Communications | Samu: Free Communications Training
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Samu: Free Communications Training

 

What skills are needed to work in communications? There is no easy answer to that, the jobs are constantly evolving. So much so that enrolling in a three year course now will inevitably mean that the contents of the curriculum will have either dated or have been too narrow for the industry once you’ve graduated. Then there are the course fees to contend with for years to come.

So as an alternative I have explored what free training is available. I have tried to provide links to courses from well known sources, whose contents are relevant, most of which are available on demand. If you want a career in communications then undertaking such courses will begin to equip you with a set of useful skills and background knowledge.

 

Fundamentals

Applied research skills are the basis for any work in the communications sector.

Finding information in business and management OU

Power Searching with Google Google, via YouTube

 

With this basic set of research skills you can begin to add more skills and knowledge. First a disclaimer, none of these courses are endorsed by Samu, and we have no associations with the providers. And so being a critical reader is a good place to start.

How to be a critical reader OU Open Learning

The Media Industries

To get an overview of the sector.

Introduction to Mass Media Saylor Academy

Media Industries and Systems MIT

Many people in the UK approach PR having been trained in journalism, which is a fine place to start.

 Introduction to Journalism (Starts 7 September, Strathclyde University)

Understanding media: The celebrity in the text OU Open Learning

Community Journalism: Digital and Social Media Cardiff University

BBC Academy Useful resources

Storytelling for change +Acumen (Started Aug 5th but well worth watching out for new courses)

Traditional print journalism is changing and an appreciation of some of these pressures is useful.

Communicating in Cyberspace MIT

Communicating With Data MIT

Cross Cultural Communication OU Open Learning

There are distinctions between journalism and a PR person as a communicator. A journalist is required to tell a story, as they, or their editor, deem fitting.  A PR person is in the business of relationship management, which includes having consideration for marketing needs, customer relations, internal communications and the management roles.

Products, services and branding OU Open Learning

Facilitating group discussions OU Open Learning

With this sort of skill set, then having an understanding of self promotion techniques is useful, for clients as well as yourself, before applying to an agency.

Personal Branding OU Open Learning

Business organisations and their environments: Culture OU Open learning

Or if you are more ambitious, and want to start your own entity, then this course is also fundamental.

Creating an ethical organisation OU Open Learning

Make Your Own Headlines OU Open Learning

 

Marketing

As the role of PR and marketing continue to blur, then a reasonable understanding of marketing is becoming essential. This short list should provide a reasonable start.

Campaigns and organisations OU Open Learning

Social Marketing OU

Strategic Marketing Measurement MIT

Services Marketing Selling the invisible OU Open Learning

Marketing in the 21st Century OU Open Learning

 

Design and Visuals

Having an appreciation of design and the impact visual imagery has on communications is essential. Even if you have someone else ‘do the graphics’, knowing the design language and what a photo journalist seeks in conveying a story, will only improve your collaborative efforts.

Documentary Photography and Photo Journalism: Still Images of A World In Motion MIT

Photoshop Training and Tutorials OU Open Learning

Introduction to Graphic Design on Canva OU Open Learning

Social Visualization MIT

 

Strategy, Management, Governance

Communications are best delivered as part of a strategy. To get an appreciation of management needs it is important to consider how they may have approached their communications.

Introducing a framework for strategy OU

Marketing communications as a strategic function OU

Influences on corporate governance OU

Communication for Managers MIT

Advanced Managerial Communication MIT

Ethical Practice: Professionalism, Social Responsibility, and the Purpose of the Corporation MIT

Communications and Information Policy MIT