Lakehead PSA

In my Media and Digital Literacy class, we were asked to make a Public Service Announcement (PSA) to promote Lakehead University Orillia. A PSA is something that is made for the public eye to raise awareness of something. PSAs are everywhere surrounding us, from television commercials, radio advertisements, to features in magazines and beyond. They can range drastically in topic depending on the purpose of the PSA.

There are 5 P’s in advertising that should be taken into account when creating media pieces, including a PSA. These 5 P’s are product, purchaser, persuasive, pitch, presented.

  • Product: What is the product or service being broadcasted?
  • Purchaser: Who is the targeted audience or possible purchaser?
  • Persuasive: How is the advertisement persuasive?
  • Pitch: Where is the pitch being broadcasted (film, internet, television, print, etc.)
  • Presented: How is the service/product being presented?

Each of these P’s is important to remember when creating media because you want to make sure your work is effective and accomplishes the purpose of it. For our PSA our product was a promotional video for Lakehead University Orillia. The purchaser/intended audience was future students/prospects of Lakehead University. Our PSA is persuasive because it promotes the beauty of the city of Orillia and really shows how much fun it is to go to the Orillia Campus of Lakehead University. The pitch/PSA will be broadcasted online. The produce is being presented sort of as a documentary as to some of the reasons why Lakehead University in Orillia is so great. We have all had so many great experiences at this school and I would not want to change any part of it!

I personally chose to come to Lakehead University because it was a nice small school. Growing up in a very small town can make cities feel extremely large and there are way more people than I am used to being around. The very small class sizes made the school experience very positive as we were known by our professors by our names and not our student numbers (which is common at much larger post-secondary institutions). The small school creates a very warm and friendly vibe that is lovely to be a part of. Lakehead University in Orillia is also pretty close to where I grew up which made commuting a possibility for me. The city of Orillia itself is so beautiful and has many great amenities, which only adds positivity to being a student at Lakehead Orillia!

Creating a PSA was a very positive and fun experience. This is a great experience for me to take into my teaching career as it requires very little resources and can be easily done with a variety of ages in classrooms. PSAs can be created for such a wide range of topics that can be incorporated into education. Students can create PSAs to be shared on their school’s announcements, the local radio station, newspaper, or even just within their classroom. When students create a PSA it is likely that they are completing a task that is cross-curricular. For example, if a group of students create a PSA on global warming, they are covering topics in Science (the PSA’s content) as well as creating a piece of media which brings it into the Language Arts: Media Literacy curriculum. This is something that can easily be done by a supply teacher, as many classrooms have at least a few iPads that students can use in small groups. Students may also have their own devices, depending on the grade. Students can use the iPads / devices to film and edit their videos. They can also use them for research, if necessary, or they could use an assignment they have already completed and turn it into a PSA. This is a great activity that will want to complete as they can be creative and allows them an opportunity to get up and move around.

A great resource for planning a PSA can be found at EduGains. Although the resource is for a grade nine class, the foundation of a PSA is there and can be applied to elementary aged students. This resource is from Scholastic and provides a lesson plan and template for students to complete in order to help them plan out their PSA.

PSA’s can be used for SO many things! If you could choose anything in the world, what would you do a PSA on? Where would you broadcast it?


MDL4000: Helen DeWaard, 5 P’s of Advertising


One thought on “Lakehead PSA

  1. Thanks for sharing the PSA production experience and adding the direct connections to how this can work in your teaching practice. You are so right when you say there are lots of ways to integrate this type of media and digital literacy task into any subject or topic. You can certainly build the necessary skills over time, during a school year, depending on the age of the students. You’ve added some links and resources to build connections to other options and ways of doing the work of creating PSAs. Have you found information on the process of teaching the steps to PSA production in the classroom? There are lots of factors to consider and issues that will need to be addressed. It’s just the beginning, but what a great way to kick it off!
    Helen DW.

    Liked by 1 person

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