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Twitter for academic writing

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Twitter for academic writing

  1. 1. Twitter for Academic Writing<br />Daniel Craig<br />Sangmyung University<br />dan@danielcraig.com<br />@seouldaddy<br />
  2. 2. Backchannel<br />I encourage you to use Twitter to discuss this presentation and ask questions. <br />If you have any questions during the presentation, send a Twitter message with the keyword #ETAK2011. <br />I will answer those questions at the end of the presentation<br />
  3. 3. What is Twitter?<br />Twitter is a microblog.<br /><ul><li>Asynchronous like a traditional blog
  4. 4. Semi-synchronous like chat/SMS
  5. 5. Limited limit (140) like SMS</li></ul>Twitter is social.<br /><ul><li>Users can “follow” or have “followers”
  6. 6. Join groups (# tags)
  7. 7. View real-time updates from those they follow or groups
  8. 8. Share links, pictures, audio, & video</li></li></ul><li>Useful for Education?<br />Concerns<br /><ul><li>Shallow communication
  9. 9. Too little text (140 characters)
  10. 10. Non-standard language</li></ul>Benefits<br /><ul><li>Access to authentic audience and input
  11. 11. Increased interaction outside of class
  12. 12. Community building
  13. 13. Opportunities for writing</li></ul>Some Uses<br /><ul><li>Twitter can be many different things to many different people.
  14. 14. Individualization of instruction
  15. 15. Voice of historical and literal figures
  16. 16. Independent & collaborative storytelling and reporting
  17. 17. 33 interesting ways to use Twitter in the classroom (http://www.ideastoinspire.co.uk/twitter.htm)</li></li></ul><li>Language Education<br />Linguistic, Cultural, & Social Objectives<br />Linguistic<br /><ul><li>Useful for a focus on vocabulary, expressions, idioms, grammar topics, and a variety of other language objectives.</li></ul>Cultural<br /><ul><li>Access to native speakers of the L2 and insight into their routines, opinions, media, and general interests.
  18. 18. Formation, growth, and nurturing of distributed social networks.</li></ul>Social<br /><ul><li>Formation, growth, and nurturing of distributed social networks.</li></li></ul><li>Linguistic<br />Output Hypothesis (Swain, 1985) - Noticing, hypothesis testing, and metalinguistic reflection are part of our acquisition of language.<br />Twitter supports this by:<br /><ul><li>Providing opportunities for output
  19. 19. Personal learning networks (PLN) can provide feedback on experimental language.
  20. 20. Interaction promotes negotiation of meaning and reflection of successes/failures.</li></ul>Any implementation of Twitter should provide clear pathways to utilize these functions.<br />
  21. 21. Cultural<br />Need for language teachers to focus on cultures in which a language is used (Kramsch, 1995)<br />Need for authentic contexts and tasks (Gilmore, 2007)<br />Facilitated by Read/Write technologies<br /><ul><li>Technologies that facilitate interaction online
  22. 22. Blogs, Wikis, Social Networks, Microblogs, etc…</li></ul>Twitter is a platform for engagement.<br /><ul><li>Little expectation of privacy, expectation of engagement.
  23. 23. Not uncommon to be contact by complete strangers.</li></ul>Instructional design should include a focus on building and engaging networks.<br />
  24. 24. Social<br />Students need more than a couple hours a week to reach advanced proficiency (Thomas & Collier, 2002)<br /><ul><li>Twitter extends learning outside the classroom.
  25. 25. Twitter can provide extracurricular language practice.</li></ul>Sharing of ideas and media with class members<br /><ul><li>Lead to greater social presence (Gunawardena, 1995)
  26. 26. Relationships can be strengthened through more frequent and less constrained interactions in online spaces such as Twitter.</li></ul>Teachers must engage learners online and encourage two-way communication, not only with the teacher but with classmates as well.<br />
  27. 27. Barriers to Use<br />Diffusion of Innovation (Rogers, 1962)<br /><ul><li>Innovator, Early Adopter, Early Majority, Late Majority, & Laggard
  28. 28. Twitter is at Early Majority; In Korea, this is Early Adopter
  29. 29. Teachers need provide modeling, training, & time for uptake.</li></ul>New Lexis<br /><ul><li>Twitter-specific language: @, DM, RT, #, and tweet.
  30. 30. Ancillary technologies: Twitter clients, URL shorteners, archiving services, and photo/video sharing services.
  31. 31. Abbreviations, acronyms, slang, idioms, and such</li></ul>Privacy Considerations<br /><ul><li>Changes in what is considered “private”
  32. 32. Teachers must consider issues of privacy when designing and implementing instruction.</li></li></ul><li>MethodsDesign-based Research<br />Design-based Research (the Design-Based Research Collective)<br /><ul><li>Studying and refining learning environments and design principles (Reeves, 2000)
  33. 33. Focus on iterative evaluation of methodology and design theory.</li></ul>5 Characteristics<br />Focused both on design of learning environments and instructional theory.<br />Continuous cycles of design, enactment, analysis, and redesign.<br />Research must lead to sharable theories.<br />Research must account for how designs function in authentic settings.<br />Methods of documentation should be able to connect processes to outcomes. <br />
  34. 34. MethodsData Collection<br />3 semesters of advanced writing courses in an English Education program<br /><ul><li>5 courses
  35. 35. 3 implementations
  36. 36. 2 revisions</li></ul>Documentation<br /><ul><li>course documents (syllabi, assignments, instruction)
  37. 37. Surveys of students’ perceptions of Twitterand its use
  38. 38. Personal communications: face-to-face, email, and Twitter</li></li></ul><li>Design Theory<br />Constructivist Principles (Vygotsky, 1978)<br /><ul><li>Knowledge develops in a very personal way through situated activity.
  39. 39. Students were encouraged to build knowledge through interactions with the teacher, peers, and outsiders.</li></ul>Experiential Learning (Kolb, 1984)<br /><ul><li>Learning is best conceived as a process, not in terms of outcomes
  40. 40. Learning is a continuous process grounded in experience
  41. 41. The process of learning requires the resolution of conflicts between dialectically opposed modes of adaptation to the world.
  42. 42. Learning is a holistic process of adaptation to the world
  43. 43. Learning involves transactions between the person and the environment
  44. 44. Learning is the process of creating knowledge</li></li></ul><li>Design Theory II<br />Communities of Practice (Lave & Wenger, 1991)<br /><ul><li>Situated in social practice
  45. 45. Twitter is a meta-community in which exists nearly innumerable communities.</li></ul>Output Hypothesis (Swain, 1985)<br /><ul><li>Role of output in acquisition: Noticing, hypothesis testing, and metalinguistic reflection are part of our acquisition of language.</li></ul>Gagne’s 9 Instructional Events (1997)<br /><ul><li>Events 6-9: eliciting performance, providing feedback, assessing performance, and enhancing retention and transfer.</li></li></ul><li>Instructional Processes & Activities<br />Categories:<br />Instruction, <br />Production, <br />Feedback, <br />Community-building, <br />Resources Distribution<br />
  46. 46. Instruction<br />Semester 1:<br /><ul><li>Little direct instruction, no training, many problems using technology
  47. 47. Reports of confusion with the interface and lexis
  48. 48. Ad hoc instruction was conducted mid-semester
  49. 49. Perception was, Twitter was difficult to use</li></ul>Semester 2:<br /><ul><li>Instituted “Twitter Paper”, direct instruction on use of technology, lexis, and writing resources
  50. 50. Twitter clients were still not described in detail.
  51. 51. Perception was still that Twitter was difficult to use.</li></ul>Semester 3:<br /><ul><li>Included demonstrations of 2 Web-based clients.
  52. 52. Connections between lexicon and features made explicit.
  53. 53. More use of phones and alternative clients, comfortable.</li></li></ul><li>Production<br />Semester 1:<br /><ul><li>No specific assignments, very few postings, little interaction.
  54. 54. Postings were words or short phrases.</li></ul>Semester 2:<br /><ul><li>Assignments that complemented instruction.
  55. 55. “Daily Tweets” regular postings, with some interaction.
  56. 56. Only did the minimum, quality still low.</li></ul>Semester 3:<br /><ul><li>More complex and creative assignments necessary.
  57. 57. More higher-order cognitive skills should be required</li></li></ul><li>Feedback<br />Semester 1:<br /><ul><li>Little produced, little feedback. Some feedback from teacher, little from students or the greater network.</li></ul>Semester 2:<br /><ul><li>Greater level of interaction, yet quite simplistic student-student.
  58. 58. Increase teacher feedback and engagement led to more overall interaction.
  59. 59. Few people in their networks.</li></ul>Semester 3:<br /><ul><li>Increase in social interactions, but little related to writing.
  60. 60. Even more feedback from teacher, but more is still needed.
  61. 61. Must increase use of Twitter networks.</li></li></ul><li>Community-Building<br />Semester 1:<br /><ul><li>No requirement for building a network, thus most students only added the teacher.
  62. 62. Little interaction, thus little community.</li></ul>Semester 2:<br /><ul><li>Required to follow at least 50 people (inc, 30 classmates), few actually did so.
  63. 63. More interaction with classmates, better sense of community.
  64. 64. Complained about seeing too many posts from 50 people.</li></ul>Semester 3:<br /><ul><li>Knowledge of and comfort with Twitter led to many more interactions between students and extended network.
  65. 65. Students asked class questions and met socially.
  66. 66. Still difficult for students to follow 50 people.</li></li></ul><li>Resource Distribution<br />Semester 1:<br /><ul><li>Teacher contributed writing and content resources.
  67. 67. Students did not contribute resources.</li></ul>Semester 2:<br /><ul><li>Teacher provided resources.
  68. 68. Some exchange of links to writing and content resources by students.</li></ul>Semester 3:<br /><ul><li>Increased sharing of research, content, and writing resources.
  69. 69. More of an emphasis on sharing is necessary, including the sharing of media for both class and social reasons.</li></li></ul><li>EAP Twitter Model<br />
  70. 70. Conclusion<br />The use of Twitter for education has real potential. The ability to form large networks of like-minded people enables learners to both produce authentic messages for the network and to receive feedback from the network. This makes writing an authentic task in an authentic context. It also provides a support network that can follow learners long after completion of the class.<br />
  71. 71. Questions/Comments?<br />Thank you!<br />Any Questions?<br />Daniel Craig<br />Sangmyung University<br />http://danielcraig.posterous.com<br />dan@danielcraig.com<br />@seouldaddy<br />
  72. 72. Backchannel<br />

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