Twitter & Distance Learning By Doug Strahler GDIT 711: Distance Learning Global Leadership
Overview• Distance Learning & Twitter• Benefits of Twitter as a Distance Education Tool• Twitter Chat• Final Thoughts & Reflections
Distance Learning• “Defined as Internet-based learning that delivers content and enables communication between instructor and students, online teaching and learning is rooted in the transaction of distance education and advanced computer and communications technology.” (Cleveland-Innes & Garrison, 2010, p.2)
Twitter• “Twitter is a real-time information network that connects you to the latest stories, ideas, opinions and news about what you find interesting.”• Micro-blogging• Tweet: 140-character message – Text – Links – Photos/Video/Audio
Twitter Symbols• @ - Username – Individuals username on Twitter – @profstrahler• # - Hashtag – Category of a tweet – #DistanceEducation
The Twitter Effect
If it is having such an impact on majorworld events, why not leverage the power of Twitter for distance education?
Distance Learning & Twitter• Delivers content/real-time information network• Enables communication (between instructor and student)
Benefits of Twitter as a Distance Education Tool• Connects community• Meet new people• Learning & Sharing of knowledge• Public Discussion beyond the classroom walls (no time limit)• Review/key concepts tool• Formal/Informal Setting• Synchronous/Asynchronous• Global Outreach• Professional networking & development• Active Learning Environment• Transactional Distance
Barriers to Adoption• Resistance to join• Social Media Policies (K-12)• Information overload• Global perspective: Twitter is banned in some countries (i.e. China)
Do you see any other benefits or barriers to using Twitter in Education?
Getting Started with Twitter• Create an account at Twitter.com• Start following professionals/friends (@profstrahler)• Start posting and sharing informationStill have questions? Visit the website I posted in the online discussion board!
Where are the Twitter Groups & Chats? • Twibes is an online directory of different Twitter users and groups, and helps you find people with the same interest as you (Education) • “Follow” them
What is a Twitter Chat?• It is an online discussion that occurs through Twitter with the use of a hashtag – Specific date/time • Set time limit, but doesn’t mean the discussion has to end – Moderator or facilitator to ask questions – Open to anyone to join – Hashtag categorizes tweets for the conversation
Twitter Chat Case Study• Slippery Rock University Social Media course – #srusmchat• Students are responsible for organizing, planning, promoting and executing a 1-hour long Twitter chat on the topic discussed that week
TweetChat: A Tool for Following a Twitter Hashtag • TweetChat helps put your blinders on to the Twitter-sphere while you monitor and chat about one topic. • Enter the hashtag you want to follow and click Go to follow!
Final Thoughts & Reflections• Twitter is a utility to distance education.• Using Twitter to enhance the learning experience in GDIT711 – Post news stories related to Distance Education – Post reactions/reflection on class discussions – Hold a 30-minute Twitter chat – #GDIT711
References & ResourcesCheck out my webpage for a list of references with links for this presentation! www.profstrahler.com