Duke University is now offering TikTok classes for influencers.
The university’s full-credit course titled “Building Global Audiences” trains undergrads on how to optimize their social media presence and online brands. The course, taught by professor Aaron Dinin, has helped students gain 145,000 followers and 80 million views collectively.
The University of Southern California’s Annenberg School and the University of Virginia are now offering comparable programs. Capitalizing off of an online brand is now so popular that the National Collegiate Athletic Association permits athletes to profit from their name and image.
Convincing Duke University to offer such classes wasn’t an easy feat for Professor Dinin.
“There’s a sense from older generations that being an influencer is this superficial Gen Z type of thing,” Dinin said. “But the reality is that these media platforms are just the way the world is. There’s a lot of entrepreneurial opportunity and a lot of reach.”
Students compare analytics, create goals, and discuss why posts and strategies perform well or don’t perform well within the class. Students can film TikTok videos during class and are assigned TikTok trends as homework.