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BLOGGING FOR
RESEARCHERS
D R H E L E N D I X O N
H T T P S : / / S O C I A L M E D I A Q U B . WO R D P R E S S . C O M /
TODAY WE WILL DISCUSS
How blogging can help you as a researcher
Different approaches to blogging
Blogging tips and best practice
Continue the conversation online @SocialMediaQUB
#QUBlogging
INTRODUCTIONS
What is
blogging?
HOW CAN
BLOGGING
HELP YOU AS A
RESEARCHER?
ACTIVITY 1: REASONS FOR BLOGGING
Refine your
writing skills
Reach a
broader
audience
Enhance your
online profile
Network
with other
researchers
Engage with
non-academic
community
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
REFINE YOUR WRITING SKILLS
Writing for a blog can help you develop your non-academic writing
style and to clarify your ideas.
Blog posts can evolve into conference papers or journal articles
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
REACH A BROADER AUDIENCE
Blogging is a variation
of open access
publishing, allowing you
to contribute to the
global knowledge pool.
It can also increase
citations and
downloads of your
publications
(altmetrics) @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
ENHANCE YOUR ONLINE PROFILE
Blogging allows you to establish
your reputation as an expert
while you are waiting to have
publications accepted
Online communication skills are
an important part of your career
development
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
NETWORK WITH OTHER
RESEARCHERS
“many bloggers are
talking together in
a kind of giant,
global virtual
common room”
http://www.theguardian.com/higher-education-
network/blog/2013/dec/02/why-do-academics-blog-research
PatThomson and Inger Mewburn
ENGAGE WITH THE
NON-ACADEMIC COMMUNITY
Blogging can bridge the divide between
academia and the public and help raise
awareness of your research findings
BLOGGING OPTIONS
• Blog owner writes most or all posts
• https://sunfishresearch.wordpress.com/
• https://wasimahmed1.wordpress.com/Solo
• 2-10 authors generate most content
• http://blogs.qub.ac.uk/qubio/
Collaborative
• Central editorial team collate posts from different authors
• http://blogs.qub.ac.uk/compromiseafterconflict/
• http://qpol.qub.ac.uk/
• http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/impactofsocialsciences/
Multi-Author
https://medium.com/advice-and-help-in-authoring-a-phd-or-non-fiction/shorter-better-faster-free-fb74bddaec03#.dqdobqxnf
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
TYPES OF BLOG
Reflective practice
Academic life commentary
Research commentary
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
MAKING BLOGGING WORK
Read other
blogs
Define your
audience
Plan your
content
Find your
voice
Promote
your blog
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
READ OTHER BLOGS
Research blogging:
http://researchblogging.org/
The higher education blogs
network:
http://www.theguardian.com/highe
r-education-
network/blog/2012/oct/05/the-
higher-education-blogs-network
ACTIVITY 2: EVALUATING A BLOG
• Search for a blog relevant to your research area
• Evaluate it by answering the following questions:
– What type of blog is it – solo, collaborative or multi-author?
– What is the purpose of the blog?
– Who is the intended audience?
– Is it easy to navigate around the blog?
– Are the theme and visuals appropriate?
– What do you like/dislike most about the blog?
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
DEFINE YOUR AUDIENCE
YOU
General
public
Academic
community
Industry
professionals
Why would
I want to
read your
blog?
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
ACTIVITY 3: WHERE TO BLOG?
Take a look at the following blogging options and decide which one
would be best suited for your blog:
• Queen’s blogs - (blogs.qub.ac.uk) based on WordPress
• WordPress - easy-to-use free blogging site that includes analytics
• Medium - story editor that focuses on ideas and networks
• Blogger - (blogspot) free weblog publishing tool from Google
• Sunsed - low-cost blogging platform which includes analytics and
SEO
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
PLAN YOUR CONTENT
Note down ideas and create a
schedule around events you are
attending or other activities
that you can write about
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
ACTIVITY 4: GETTING STARTED!
• Think of a name for your blog
– This will become your domain name so keep it short and quirky!
• In one sentence, outline the mission statement for your blog
– This can later be developed into your first blog post summarising the focus
of your blog
• Post your answers on the Blogging for researchers padlet:
http://padlet.com/HelenDixon/blogging
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
• Include a photo and a short ‘bio’ detailing your current position, research
interests and any publications
• Include links to your journal articles, other blog posts, online profiles
FIND YOUR VOICE
• Interesting ideas
• Lessons learned
• Mistakes made
Do your
research
• Don’t use jargon
• Be concise
Make it
interesting • Use anecdotes
or quotes
• Include visuals
Tell a story
WHAT MAKES A GOOD BLOG POST?
A catchy heading
A high impact introduction –
fascinating fact, startling statistic or
quirky quote
Get to the point
early – limit to 3
aspects
Simple exhibits –
images, charts,
diagrams, tables
Tell a story or
be topical
A strong finish
that leaves a
lasting impression
ACTIVITY 5: TURNING AN IDEA INTO A
BLOG POST
Choose one of the following questions
• What have you learned as an academic?
• What is the most interesting part of your work?
• What is the key finding from your research so far?
Think of a title and 3 key points that your blog post would make
Identify possible visuals that your blog post could include
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
BLOG POSTS VS JOURNAL ARTICLES
Blog post Journal article
Length 700 -1000 words 7000-10000 words
Style Informal Formal
Target audience Academic, professional or public Mainly academic
Frequency Weekly – Monthly Yearly
Content Colour images, tables, charts,
diagrams, videos
Black and white tables, charts and
diagrams
Accessibility Open access – unlimited audience Subscription – limited audience
JOURNAL ARTICLE TO BLOG POST
Literaturereview
One or two
lines at start of
post
summarising
main theories
should be
enough
Methodologysection
Briefly describe
innovative
methods
Assume
audience will
understand
established
methods
Findings
What did your
research
discover or
conclude?
Include any key
statistics
Discussion
What is your
main finding or
conclusion?
What happens
next?
https://medium.com/advice-and-help-in-authoring-a-phd-or-non-fiction/how-to-write-a-blogpost-from-your-journal-article-6511a3837caa#.u764cclin
PROMOTE YOUR BLOG
Share on
social media
Use relevant
keywords (SEO)
Invite readers
to subscribe
Tell people
about it
Add a link on
your website
Include a link in
your email signature
SEO FOR BLOGS
Links Titles Headings
URLs Images Excerpts
https://dailypost.wordpress.com/2016/03/10/six-seo-factors-you-should-know/
MEASURING SUCCESS
It’s not just about metrics
ISSUES TO CONSIDER
Time commitment
Publishing unfinished work
Journals want previously
unpublished research
Self-plagiarising
Negative comments
Reputational risk to you and the
University
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
BLOGGING TIPS
Plan first few posts in advance
Adopt an informal style – avoid jargon
How would you describe your research to a friend?
Use short sentences and paragraphs
Use bullet points and lists
Include images and video if relevant
Use hyperlinks rather than a list of references
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
“Be brief, be vivid, and be connected.”
CoreyTomsons
https://thoughtcapital.wordpress.com/2007/03/11/how-to-write-an-academic-blog/
3 ESSENTIAL RULES FOR
WRITING A GOOD BLOG
IF YOU BLOG, TWITTER CAN HELP!
“see how people retweet you—their re-phrasings and summaries
can often show you a better way of capturing what your post says”
Prof Patrick Dunleavy (LSE) @Write4Research
DOING IT RIGHT!
Discuss your ideas with your colleagues
Read the University’s Social Media Policy
Respect copyright and link to or cite sources
Moderate all comments
Respond to comments and Tweets
Remain professional at all times!
USEFUL RESOURCES
• Social Media support (policies and guides):
http://go.qub.ac.uk/socialmedia
• Social Media QUB blog: https://socialmediaqub.wordpress.com/
• Guide to setting up a WordPress blog: https://learn.wordpress.com/
• Blogger: How to start a blog: https://youtu.be/bU4gXHkejMo
• How to write a good research blog post:
http://scienceofblogging.com/how-to-write-a-good-research-blog-post/
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
SOME LITERATURE
• Kjellberg, Sara. I am a blogging researcher: Motivations for blogging in a scholarly context. First
Monday, [S.l.], jul. 2010. ISSN 13960466.
http://firstmonday.org/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/2962/2580
• Riesch, Hauke, and Jonathan Mendel. "Science blogging: Networks, boundaries and
limitations." Science as Culture 23.1 (2014): 51-72.
http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09505431.2013.801420
• Shema H, Bar-Ilan J,Thelwall M (2012) Research Blogs and the Discussion of Scholarly
Information. PLoS ONE 7(5): e35869. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0035869
http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0035869
@SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging

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Blogging for researchers

  • 1. BLOGGING FOR RESEARCHERS D R H E L E N D I X O N H T T P S : / / S O C I A L M E D I A Q U B . WO R D P R E S S . C O M /
  • 2. TODAY WE WILL DISCUSS How blogging can help you as a researcher Different approaches to blogging Blogging tips and best practice Continue the conversation online @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 4. HOW CAN BLOGGING HELP YOU AS A RESEARCHER?
  • 5. ACTIVITY 1: REASONS FOR BLOGGING Refine your writing skills Reach a broader audience Enhance your online profile Network with other researchers Engage with non-academic community @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 6. REFINE YOUR WRITING SKILLS Writing for a blog can help you develop your non-academic writing style and to clarify your ideas. Blog posts can evolve into conference papers or journal articles @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 7. REACH A BROADER AUDIENCE Blogging is a variation of open access publishing, allowing you to contribute to the global knowledge pool. It can also increase citations and downloads of your publications (altmetrics) @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 8. ENHANCE YOUR ONLINE PROFILE Blogging allows you to establish your reputation as an expert while you are waiting to have publications accepted Online communication skills are an important part of your career development @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 9. NETWORK WITH OTHER RESEARCHERS “many bloggers are talking together in a kind of giant, global virtual common room” http://www.theguardian.com/higher-education- network/blog/2013/dec/02/why-do-academics-blog-research PatThomson and Inger Mewburn
  • 10. ENGAGE WITH THE NON-ACADEMIC COMMUNITY Blogging can bridge the divide between academia and the public and help raise awareness of your research findings
  • 11. BLOGGING OPTIONS • Blog owner writes most or all posts • https://sunfishresearch.wordpress.com/ • https://wasimahmed1.wordpress.com/Solo • 2-10 authors generate most content • http://blogs.qub.ac.uk/qubio/ Collaborative • Central editorial team collate posts from different authors • http://blogs.qub.ac.uk/compromiseafterconflict/ • http://qpol.qub.ac.uk/ • http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/impactofsocialsciences/ Multi-Author https://medium.com/advice-and-help-in-authoring-a-phd-or-non-fiction/shorter-better-faster-free-fb74bddaec03#.dqdobqxnf @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 12. TYPES OF BLOG Reflective practice Academic life commentary Research commentary @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 13. MAKING BLOGGING WORK Read other blogs Define your audience Plan your content Find your voice Promote your blog @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 14. READ OTHER BLOGS Research blogging: http://researchblogging.org/ The higher education blogs network: http://www.theguardian.com/highe r-education- network/blog/2012/oct/05/the- higher-education-blogs-network
  • 15. ACTIVITY 2: EVALUATING A BLOG • Search for a blog relevant to your research area • Evaluate it by answering the following questions: – What type of blog is it – solo, collaborative or multi-author? – What is the purpose of the blog? – Who is the intended audience? – Is it easy to navigate around the blog? – Are the theme and visuals appropriate? – What do you like/dislike most about the blog? @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 16. DEFINE YOUR AUDIENCE YOU General public Academic community Industry professionals Why would I want to read your blog? @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 17. ACTIVITY 3: WHERE TO BLOG? Take a look at the following blogging options and decide which one would be best suited for your blog: • Queen’s blogs - (blogs.qub.ac.uk) based on WordPress • WordPress - easy-to-use free blogging site that includes analytics • Medium - story editor that focuses on ideas and networks • Blogger - (blogspot) free weblog publishing tool from Google • Sunsed - low-cost blogging platform which includes analytics and SEO @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 18. PLAN YOUR CONTENT Note down ideas and create a schedule around events you are attending or other activities that you can write about @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 19. ACTIVITY 4: GETTING STARTED! • Think of a name for your blog – This will become your domain name so keep it short and quirky! • In one sentence, outline the mission statement for your blog – This can later be developed into your first blog post summarising the focus of your blog • Post your answers on the Blogging for researchers padlet: http://padlet.com/HelenDixon/blogging @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 20. • Include a photo and a short ‘bio’ detailing your current position, research interests and any publications • Include links to your journal articles, other blog posts, online profiles
  • 21. FIND YOUR VOICE • Interesting ideas • Lessons learned • Mistakes made Do your research • Don’t use jargon • Be concise Make it interesting • Use anecdotes or quotes • Include visuals Tell a story
  • 22. WHAT MAKES A GOOD BLOG POST? A catchy heading A high impact introduction – fascinating fact, startling statistic or quirky quote Get to the point early – limit to 3 aspects Simple exhibits – images, charts, diagrams, tables Tell a story or be topical A strong finish that leaves a lasting impression
  • 23. ACTIVITY 5: TURNING AN IDEA INTO A BLOG POST Choose one of the following questions • What have you learned as an academic? • What is the most interesting part of your work? • What is the key finding from your research so far? Think of a title and 3 key points that your blog post would make Identify possible visuals that your blog post could include @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 24. BLOG POSTS VS JOURNAL ARTICLES Blog post Journal article Length 700 -1000 words 7000-10000 words Style Informal Formal Target audience Academic, professional or public Mainly academic Frequency Weekly – Monthly Yearly Content Colour images, tables, charts, diagrams, videos Black and white tables, charts and diagrams Accessibility Open access – unlimited audience Subscription – limited audience
  • 25. JOURNAL ARTICLE TO BLOG POST Literaturereview One or two lines at start of post summarising main theories should be enough Methodologysection Briefly describe innovative methods Assume audience will understand established methods Findings What did your research discover or conclude? Include any key statistics Discussion What is your main finding or conclusion? What happens next? https://medium.com/advice-and-help-in-authoring-a-phd-or-non-fiction/how-to-write-a-blogpost-from-your-journal-article-6511a3837caa#.u764cclin
  • 26. PROMOTE YOUR BLOG Share on social media Use relevant keywords (SEO) Invite readers to subscribe Tell people about it Add a link on your website Include a link in your email signature
  • 27. SEO FOR BLOGS Links Titles Headings URLs Images Excerpts https://dailypost.wordpress.com/2016/03/10/six-seo-factors-you-should-know/
  • 28. MEASURING SUCCESS It’s not just about metrics
  • 29. ISSUES TO CONSIDER Time commitment Publishing unfinished work Journals want previously unpublished research Self-plagiarising Negative comments Reputational risk to you and the University @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 30. BLOGGING TIPS Plan first few posts in advance Adopt an informal style – avoid jargon How would you describe your research to a friend? Use short sentences and paragraphs Use bullet points and lists Include images and video if relevant Use hyperlinks rather than a list of references @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 31. “Be brief, be vivid, and be connected.” CoreyTomsons https://thoughtcapital.wordpress.com/2007/03/11/how-to-write-an-academic-blog/ 3 ESSENTIAL RULES FOR WRITING A GOOD BLOG
  • 32. IF YOU BLOG, TWITTER CAN HELP! “see how people retweet you—their re-phrasings and summaries can often show you a better way of capturing what your post says” Prof Patrick Dunleavy (LSE) @Write4Research
  • 33. DOING IT RIGHT! Discuss your ideas with your colleagues Read the University’s Social Media Policy Respect copyright and link to or cite sources Moderate all comments Respond to comments and Tweets Remain professional at all times!
  • 34. USEFUL RESOURCES • Social Media support (policies and guides): http://go.qub.ac.uk/socialmedia • Social Media QUB blog: https://socialmediaqub.wordpress.com/ • Guide to setting up a WordPress blog: https://learn.wordpress.com/ • Blogger: How to start a blog: https://youtu.be/bU4gXHkejMo • How to write a good research blog post: http://scienceofblogging.com/how-to-write-a-good-research-blog-post/ @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging
  • 35. SOME LITERATURE • Kjellberg, Sara. I am a blogging researcher: Motivations for blogging in a scholarly context. First Monday, [S.l.], jul. 2010. ISSN 13960466. http://firstmonday.org/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/2962/2580 • Riesch, Hauke, and Jonathan Mendel. "Science blogging: Networks, boundaries and limitations." Science as Culture 23.1 (2014): 51-72. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09505431.2013.801420 • Shema H, Bar-Ilan J,Thelwall M (2012) Research Blogs and the Discussion of Scholarly Information. PLoS ONE 7(5): e35869. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0035869 http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0035869 @SocialMediaQUB #QUBlogging