May's 8th of the Month saw the focus on Social media and in particular Twitter and Google Communities with a little information on LinkedIn too.
Introduced by Mark De Groot, the first presentation saw our own Rebecca Sellers (@) stepping into present about Twitter in Teaching and Learning taking the place of Michelle Mellis (@) who couldn't present due to unforeseen circumstances.
|Rebecca Sellers presenting. Photo by Lyn Edwards|
The talk focused around the basic tools that Twitter has including hashtags and favoriting. Next was the ways it could be used to engage with students in teaching and learning but also with the wider community. Some of the suggestions included setting a hashtag up for module to share resources and questions. Also setting up a tweet chat with an external guest to allow students to engage with industry, without having to schedule class time and does not require travel from the external.
There were a lot of questions from the audience about appropriateness and privacy particular within area where confidentiality might be important. The view of the speaker was that you should do what was right for your specific situation. This may include keeping the account private so that each follower had to be granted permission to see the Twitter feed or using a generic one so it could not be linked to an individual.
Michelle was interviewed prior to session about her use of Twitter. Here is her video.
Next up was the Sarah Roe and Mark Flisher from AET talking about their use of Google + Communities to support their students and encourage collaboration and critiquing of others work. They used the Community in 2 modules and found the ability to keep it private from others made the students feel safer and more willing to engage. It was also used as a discussion area if students had an issue with a piece of work they could post a question and wither the member of staff would reply or one of the other students would offer an answer. The answers were visible to everyone so that everyone received the same information.
|Sarah Roe and Mark Flisher presenting. Photo by Lyn Edwards.|
Here are Mark and Sarah talking about why they use Google+ Communities.
The session concluded with a brief discussion around the use of LinkedIn to keep in contact with alumni and provide a source of potential guest and external speakers to give students an industry perspective.
The high numbers attending and the audience engagement shows there is a big appetite o using social media in a learning and teaching environment. We will look to enhance and expand the number of sessions in this area in the coming year.