top of page

My Assignments

During my tenure at Northwest Missouri State University, I taught a core course for all Digital Media students called Introduction to Web Publishing. The course changed nearly every semester because it fundamentally was an SEO course, and Google is constantly improving its ranking algorithms! But the basic focus of the course never changed as we always focused on strategies for successful websites. 

In Intro to Web Publishing, students were challenged with three in-depth website analysis papers, which collectively gave them a very impressive understanding of a specific site's standing as it relates to SEO elements. Examples of those assignments are linked below.

I also taught all of the advertising courses in the School of Communication and Mass Media. Over the years, I created a number of new courses to align with industry needs. Examples from some of the bigger assignments are linked below. 

Intro to Web Publishing Assignments

Website Traffic & Popularity

Allows students to deeply learn one website and a competing site to analyze for an entire semester. Focuses on traffic metrics and backlink analysis. Relies on a variety of free web-based data sources.

Traffic & Analysis Assignment Page

Traffic & Popularity Assignment Support Page

UX / Usability Field Test

Uses Steve Krug’s usability testing script. Requires students to conduct two in-person tests, with options for remote testing. A key area is improved using sketch or wireframe.

UX & Usability Assignment Page

UX & Usability Assignment Support Page

SEO / Keyword Research

Uses SpyFu, thanks to that excellent course providing each student free access for 120 days. Also incorporates Google Trends.

SEO Keyword Research Assignment Page

SEO Keyword Research Assignment Support Page

Intro to Advertising Assignments

First Job in Advertising

Provides an opportunity for students to dive into the entire landscape of potential careers.

See the assignment here. (Scribd link)

Super Bowl Analysis

Looks at recent Super Bowl advertising.

See the assignment here.  (Scribd link)

Social & Ethical Analysis

Allows students an opportunity to think through social and ethical aspects of advertising.


Introduction to the Advertising Process

Very deep dive into a specific company, its products and an identified target audience. This becomes the first part of the larger media plan assignment.

See the assignment here.  (Scribd link)

Media Plan

Building from the previous assignments, students must spend a specified amount of money in 3 to 4 different media types. Requires approximately four weeks of in-class coverage.

Media Plan Assignment Page

Media Plan Assignment Support Page

Individual media-buying support pages: 

How to buy Spotify ads. —

How to buy magazine ads

How to buy Facebook/Instagram ads. — 

How to buy radio ads. — 

How to buy TV ads. — 

How to buy Google ads. — 

How to buy Outdoor ads. — 

Media Plan Excel Spreadsheet.

Creative Concepting

Students choose one of 3-4 standard creative templates to communicate a specified message objective. Usually the client is the same as the media plan for deeper knowledge and understanding.

See assignment here(Scribd link)

Advertising Campaigns Assignments

Ad Creative Concepts Collection

Students collect a variety of good advertisements and categorize them according to each ad’s cretive approach, such as: analogy, puffery, borrowed interest, competitive, etc.

See assignment here.  (Scribd link)


An exercise in studying an existing advertising campaign and expanding on more iterations that fit that campaign’s message and tone.

See the assignment here.  (Scribd link)

Magazine Concepts & Pricing

Message concepts are creating and aligned with specific magazine advertisement sizes and placements. Students concept both the message and the medium, and price their concepts.

See the assignment here.

Example Excel pricing sheet here.

(Scribd links)

Newspaper Concepts & Pricing

Students integrate newspaper’s huge canvas into their message concepts and price the concept using the Wall Street Journal’s extensive media kit information.

See assignment here.

Example Excel pricing sheet here.

(Scribd links)

Outdoor Concepts & Pricing

Outdoor concepts can be anything from a basic billboard to street messages to ambient concepts. Students price as much as they can using Lamar’s online inventory database.

See the assignment here.  (Scribd link)

Final Assignment

The final campaign is a capstone project, allowing students to concept and build a campaign with 5 different media elements.

See the assignment here.  (Scribd link)

Advertising Case Studies Assignments

Brand Response to Racial Injustice

A quantitative analysis of brand reactions to the murder of George Floyd during the summer of 2020. Students used Airtable as the basis for inputting and analyzing results.

See the assignment here.  (Scribd link)

Creative Objectives & Methods

Assessment of 8-10 different, common message objectives and methods, aligned to textbook coverage.

See assignment here.  (Scribd link)

Apple Ad Campaigns

Students studied three decades of Apple advertising, focusing on the company’s innovative product introduction advertisements and events.

See the assignment here.  (Scribd link)

Threaded Discussion Topics

About every other week, students participate in a virtual discussion focused on a current event. Topics include: analysis of Adweek and AdAge reports; analyzing specific magazine media kits; researching famous art directors; studying “best of” lists; and concepting ad messages.

bottom of page