Social Media in Courses

"Being able to engage students and colleagues, impart relevant information, cultivate an online persona and use digital media are all skills that are essential for today’s educators."

  • "Having an active social media presence can benefit your teaching career because it shows colleagues a window into your personality, your engagement style, your academic interests, and your ability to adapt teaching practices and  to master new technologies." ("What Do Your Tweets Say About You as an Online Instructor")
  • The articles below walk you through some of the social-media options -- and related concerns and terms -- available to an instructor today.

1. "8 Things You Should Know Before Using Social Media in Your Course" (online article) includes practical and necessary advice for an instructor intending to use third-party services in course delivery.

2. "Alternative Social Media Tools for Teaching and Learning" (online article; part 1/4, click through for other parts) explores the value and possibilities of the following tools:

  • VoiceThread -- A web-based application that "lets people upload and share images, videos and documents and then have an online conversation about each other's posts through audio, video, or text comments"
  • Diigo -- A "social bookmarking tool" that "lets users bookmark Web pages from any browser or computer" and then "allows people to annotate and highlight Web pages to assist with research"
  • Scoop.it -- "[A]n online content curation and publishing tool that lets people search for Web resources related to topics of interest, post them on their personal Scoop.it page along with a note, and then publish their scooped content to a blog or other online media"
  • Instagram -- "[A]n online social network for sharing photos and videos"
  • Pinterest -- "[A] social bookmarking tool for online images ... a really powerful curation tool"
  • Feedly -- "[A]n online feed aggregator for blogs and other sites that use RSS or Atom Syndication"

3. "Classification of Social Media Platforms" (web page) provides a working definition as well as a brief explanation and examples of each of the following terms:

  • Social Networking
  • Microblogging
  • Blogging (Using Published Websites)
  • Photo Sharing
  • Video Sharing
  • Crowdsourcing
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