Blogs

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Write your first Blog Entry[edit]

Once you have created your blogging site, write your first blog entry. This can cover anything you feel is appropriate, but a few suggestions as to topics are listed below:

  • Reasons for choosing the blogging software you opted for
  • Initial thoughts on the use of blogs for assessment

You may find it useful to read the Tips how to write better blog texts from Sue Waters

Link in to your peers blogs using RSS RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is an important tool in the Web 2.0 arena. Further details on RSS (including the set up and creation of an RSS Feed reader) are available from the RSS page. In order to keep up to date with the blogs of other participants, link them to your RSS Feed Reader. As before, choose whichever tool you feel would be most appropriate for you. As part of this course, you and your peer will be asked to identify and informally interview an educator who is involved in the use of blogs in education. The interviewee can come from whichever country and organisation you and your peer find interesting. Examples of educational blogs and bloggers are proved below:

Interesting Blogs Commentary - Will Richardson's expression is worth thinking aout: By its very nature, assigned blogging in schools cannot be blogging. It's contrived. No matter how much we want to spout off about the wonders of audience and readership, students who are asked to blog are blogging for an audience of one, the teacher. When the semester ends, "students drop blogging like wet cement." Richardson wants to teach students to write with passion, but he notes: I can't let them do it passionately due to the inherent censorship that a high school served Weblog carries with it. Is assessement disturbing learning with blogging? Could it be vice versa and how? Things you really need to learn is not so positive towards assessement: "Your school will try to teach you facts, which you'll need to pass the test but which are otherwise useless. In passing you may learn some useful skills, like literacy, which you should cultivate." What kind of assessment we need in education?

The incorporation of diaries and journals as learning and assessment vehicles into programmes of study within higher education has enabled the further growth of reflection, creative writing, critical thinking and meta-cognitive processes of students' learning. However, there is currently little research that aims to compare how different types of diary are used and for what specific learning and teaching purposes, so, with this in mind, a study was carried out to investigate digital diary use within a group of undergraduates, to some of whom the authors allocated Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs), which they used to contribute to a blog (digital diaries), and to some of whom hard-backed format (paper diaries) were given. This paper is the first of two from this study. The findings indicated that whilst students found both forms of diary acceptable and convenient, differences emerged in the way that the diaries were being used on a day-to-day basis, both in the frequency of entry and in the length of entries made. Throughout the study, the digital diaries were used more frequently, although the entries were often brief and incomplete. Conversely, students completing the paper diaries made significantly fewer entries in total, but those that were made were longer and more discursive in nature. Further, it was found that the paper diaries possessed positive qualities related to handling and attractiveness that promoted more prolonged use, whilst the negative qualities of the digital diaries were linked to technical limitations. The implications of this work are considered in relation to more general notions of using dynamic devices to encourage students to engage in reflexive criticism. (Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education)

Assignment[edit]

What kind of assessment is supported and promoted in the use of Blogs and Blogging software?


Further Resources and Links[edit]

YouTube Video from CommonCraft on Blogs in Plain English

Educational blogging

Using blogs for Formative Assessement and Interactive Teaching

article at wikipedia

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