Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Using Twitter in Teaching & Learning

I've been using twitter for over 3 years now, and have found it a great way to find/share information and engage with others with similar interests (whether that's eLearning topics or my beloved Everton FC). I had already posted my thoughts on Twitter some 2 years ago - many of which haven't changed. The one thing I wanted to explore was using Twitter within teaching, and luckily that now I'm in the position to implement this myself, the twitter 'movement' is at it's largest yet, with over 100 million users worldwide.

I've seen and read about others using twitter within their teaching and really think it can help bring students together to communicate. Bill Wolfe's post on 'Using Twitter in the Graduate Classroom' does a good job at highlighting some US-based work. He talks about the use of twitter as a back-channel and alludes to the development of a 'community' of learners - exactly what I hope to achieve.

I'm also interested to see how many of my students are part of this growing 100 million figure; if they welcome the use of twitter for their studies; and if they continue to use it with their colleagues beyond learning.

To start with, I've introduced a hashtag  - what twitter uses to record posts about a specific topic/idea, and I've used the Twitter Widgits to quickly show any 'tweets' with the course hashtag (#MM5362) directly in my Moodle area. I'm also building a twitter 'List' to display student aliases so they can each follow each other and build that community.

If you are aware of any research in this area or are interested in using Twitter in your teaching, feel free to get in touch - you can even follow me on Twitter
Follow reedyreedles on Twitter

For those not too familiar with Twitter, I leave you with this introduction:

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This work by Peter Reed is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.

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