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Presentation for ALT Uses of Twitter in Higher Education workshop on 4th May 2010.

Presentation for ALT Uses of Twitter in Higher Education workshop on 4th May 2010.
http://www.alt.ac.uk/workshop_detail.php?e=349

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  • Dr Alan J. Cann, Department of Biology, Adrian Building, University of Leicester, University Road, Leicester LE1 7RH, UK.
  • Incentives can be offered to network participants through institutional recognition and reward schemes, but the input of key individuals should be recognized by small scale financial payments. Professionalization of the online support role distinguishes it from online interactions which are purely social. If we want participants to behave in a professional manner, we must treat them as professionals.
  • http://twitter.com/AJCann - join the conversation!

Twitter @ UoLxxx Twitter @ UoLxxx Presentation Transcript

  • Twitter @ #UoLxxx A.J. Cann Biological Sciences University of Leicester
  • Why Leicester?
    • Active research community
    • Social media in education
  •  
  • Small World Networks for Peer Support
  • Social but professional www.flickr.com/photos/tfrancis/1288762325/
  • newsletter.alt.ac.uk/xrctg5ovlfkimsphpsy77s
  • Network diagrams with AGNA
  • Summary
    • Using Twitter helped:
    • Develop peer support among students with activity rising just prior to assessment deadlines or during revision for exams.
    • Develop personal learning networks - students used the network when they were preparing assessed work or revising for tests, often in situations when they were physically isolated from their peers.
    • Students to arrange social and academic meetings.
    • Collect data for measuring the student experience using a wide range of free and increasingly sophisticated online analysis tools.
  • Microblogging
  • Friendfolios
    • tinyurl.com/friendfolio
    • Students dislike e-portfolios.
    • Friendfeed is much more palatable to students, based on the Facebook paradigm and the attraction of continuous partial attention via status updates.
    • Training:
    • FriendFeed is like Facebook for <insert degree here>
    • In one term, 134 students produced 5,376 entries, ranging from a single word to several hundred words, 8,151 comments, 5,232 &quot;likes&quot;, and wrote 199,853 words (an average of 1,491 each, not including private messages) words on topics including shared links, housekeeping and deeply personal reflections.
    • Friendfeed engages users through intermittent variable rewards in the form of reflective status updates from &quot;friends&quot;.
  • Social Scaffolding For Reflection And Peer Support Joanne Badge, School of Biological Sciences, University of Leicester; Neil Saunders, CSIRO Mathematics, Informatics and Statistics, NSW 1670, Australia; Alan Cann, Department of Biology, University of Leicester. e-mail: [email_address] Reflection is an essential aspect of learning, allowing students to progress through identification of learning strengths and needs. This has most commonly involved construction of reflective portfolios and personal development plans (PDP). Building reflective e-portfolios is rarely popular with students and does not always succeed (Driessen et al, 2005). Our own recent experience with reflective e-portfolios has illustrated some of the difficulties. We revised a first year undergraduate key skills module, leading to the construction of a personal learning environment (PLE) and reflective e-portfolio. Evidence shows that &quot;big box&quot; tools tend to be rejected by students in favour of social sites - a &quot;mashup PLE&quot; (JISC, 2008). Students were initially encouraged to construct reflective e-portfolios based on wikis. Our observation, and that of others (Driessen et al, 2005), is that students tend to dislike e-portfolios. To promote engagement, students were given assessment criteria and deadlines. Feedback indicated that students did not enjoy reflection because they perceived it to be &quot;not relevant&quot; to their degree. Only 1% of the e-portfolios created were updated after end of the module. Consequently, we introduced changes for the second cohort of students, using a cloud-based solution using social network scaffolding for reflection and feedback. Friendfeed (www.friendfeed.com) is much more palatable to students, based on the Facebook paradigm and the attraction of continuous partial attention via status updates. In one term, 134 students whose accounts we were able to analyze produced 5,376 entries, ranging from a single word to several hundred words, 8,151 comments, 5,232 &quot;likes&quot;, and wrote 199,853 words (an average of 1,491 each, not including private messages) words on topics including shared links, housekeeping and deeply personal reflections. Do social network status updates provide sufficient scaffolding to encourage deep reflection on learning? Friendfeed is ideally suited to this task and has the benefit of engaging users through intermittent variable rewards in the form of reflective status updates from &quot;friends&quot; (Baker et al, 2002). Through the use of &quot;Friendfolios&quot;, a highly cost-efficient cloud computing solution, we have been able to make reflection &quot;sticky&quot; and even popular. References: Baker, A.C., Jensen, P.J., and Kolb, D.A. 2002. Conversational Learning: An Experiential Approach to Knowledge Creation. Quorum Books. Driessen, E.W., van Tartwijk, J., Overeem, K., Vermunt, J.D. and van der Vleuten, C.P.P. 2005. Conditions for successful reflective use of portfolios in undergraduate medical education. Medical Education 39: 1230-1235. JISC. Effective Practice with e-Portfolios. 2008. http://www.jisc.ac.uk/whatwedo/programmes/elearning/eportfolios/effectivepracticeeportfolios
  • Networks analysis with Gephi
  • conversation
    • microbiologybytes.com/AJC
    • www. citeulike . org/user/AJCann/tag/twitter
    • delicious. com/AJCann/twitter
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