Thursday, May 26, 2011

Microblogging won't make you seasick

From 1999 through 2003, I both taught computers and was the IT Coordinator at an international school in Bangkok. Those were early days for that particular school as far as technology and we were challenged by the range of issues small, young school in Southeast Asia would face - from non-standard hardware running pirated software to one dial-up connection shared by a computer lab of 25 computer. Those problems were eventually overcome through persistence in seeking resources and getting admin on board for changes.

But there was another probem. The dreaded problem that makes electronic learning tools both a blessing and a curse. "The WOW factor!" Back then, and unfortuantely still today, many students find the dazzling swishes, swirls and color schemes of powerpoint a more satisfying use of their time than really working on content. Now we have tools like and and can do powerpoint in a new and better way, easier to embed movies, non-linear content, more file types, etc... but learners are still learners and sometimes that prezi zooming can make you seasick.

This is why twitter, microblogging to be more formal, is so appealing. There is no worrying about "The WOW factor" with microblogging. What counts is the idea. Short, sweet, maybe even pithy if you have a great personality, but no enduring swirling, flashing or motion sickness.

Microblogging also has the power to open the conversation up among two or more people from even across the world. It's a great way to get students to sharpen their meaningful statement skills without realizing it.

So enjoy EDUCAUSE's "7 things you should know about microblogging" and think today about how you can use this powerful tool to enhance learning.


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