I am now finishing up my certificate in online teaching from the University of Wisconsin @ Stout. It is a great opportunity to learn more about how I can incorporate technology into my on campus classroom and my online classes in the future.
I read the following article for an assignment:
Billiot, Theresa (2011) In One Online Class, Twitter Brings Students Together. The Chronicle of Higher Education, Retrieved September 30 from http://chronicle.com/article/In-One-Online-Class-Twitter/129120/
This is a summary of her article and my thoughts.
Theresa Belliot, an assistant professor of marketing at Fort Hays State Univeristy, wrote an article that really interests me. She wanted to find a way for her online students to become more connected to her. She felt that in many ways she was not connecting with them. She decided to push the discussion boards that came with her course management system provided by the university away and use Twitter instead. Belliot was surprised to find out that her online students did not have the experience that she assumed they had for using Twitter. She, like many of us, thought the students knew more because of their constant use of Facebook and Youtube.
The students were required to respond with just one tweet and no more than 140 characters. Belliot’s students were marketing students. She was teaching her students how to be modern day marketing gurus by having them interact with her on campus students. She had her on campus and online students form teams and required them to “create social media campaigns” for the social causes that interested them. She found that Twitter is an interactive way which helped to “improve the academic work of all of my students”.
There were some students who realized their lack of participation was more obvious because they were posting in a public forum. Her conclusion is that using Twitter in the classroom helped make the learning process more “personal”, it allows for “real time discussion”, and creates a very good sense of community.