A Blog About Educational Blogging

This is a Blog about the uses of Blogs and Wikis in education, with each entry detailing a means of employing them into a higher education curriculum. The faculty and graduate students at Bowling Green State University are the target audiences of these posts.

Monday, November 14, 2005

As always, the BGSU Center for Teaching, Learning, and Technology strives to assist instructors in being the very best educators they can be. You can find more information about what websites offer free blog domains, what rubrics exist for grading student blog reports, and many, many more ways to enrich your curriculum at our official CTLT blog:

http://facultydevelopmentbgsu.blogspot.com/

We are located at 201 Univerisity Hall, and our phone number is 419-372-6898. We're CTLT, and we're here to help!

So have I convinced you that blogs and wikis are worth incoporating into your next class at BGSU? If not...do you know what? THESE SUGGESTIONS ARE ONLY THE BEGINNING! Feel free to invent your own uses: blogs and wikis are flexible tools that can be used for whatever task you can think of to use them!

A big selling point for the use of blogs and wikis in education is that they can save a lot of valuable face-to-face classtime by having students discuss course concepts or complete their collaborative work outside of class. Quite simply, you can get more accomplished in your course if you incoporate blogs!

Blogs and Wikis are an ACTIVE mode of learning, as oppossed to sitting in a lecture and PASSIVELY taking in some of what the professor says. They require active participation in the learning experience.

Do you need still more reasons on why you should be using Blogs and Wikis? Because you're reading one right now, and isn't this a fun way to learn? Customization is easy with features like bright colors and hyperlinks like this one right here. Your students are already reading them outside of class about other topics, so why aren't you taking advantage of this easy-to-use means of getting the message or concepts you're trying to get across to your students, too?

Students may be asked to write their own blogs as part of their course grade. For instance, students could read a chunk of a book and post two paragraphs of their thoughts on the reading. Successive assignments would warrant periodic postings, and during a semester a full-fledged blog for each student will take form. Alternatively, a single wiki or blog could be used to allow all students to post in a single place so that they could read each other students' thoughts and discuss them with further posts.

Some instructors are using blogs to organize class seminars and to provide summaries of readings. These are known as “Group blogs” —that is, individual blogs authored by a group of people. Wikis are another great means of accomplishing this, and instead of each student having their own separate site, all students can post their own thoughts in the same place.

Blogs are an excellent means of organizing in-class discussions. Students get to know each other better by visiting and reading blogs from other students. They discover, in a non-threatening way, their similarities and differences. The student who usually talks very loud in the classroom and the student who is very timid have the same writing space to voice their opinion. So save some of your valuable classtime and carry out some of your discussions online!

First, teachers use blogs to replace the standard class Web page. Instructors can post class times and rules, assignment notifications, suggested readings, and exercises. It's just as easy to create a blog as a web page, so why not try it instead?