Improving one’s Twitter skills


I just added a Twitter widget to the blackboard shell for one of my courses. Easy. But how to get students (and me), actually incorporating Twitter into their learning activities? This is partly, of course, about mastering the technology. Twitter is very complex, and I think that complexity stems from the fact that you don’t necessarily get instant feedback when you do something – use a hashtag, for example. So you have to take stuff on faith.

The other part is attitudinal, of course. How do we make these styles of communicating part of our daily life? We’ve got to feel there is some incentive – and in a course that’s got to go beyond marks, if you really want students to learn something.

Available now: a guide to using Twitter in university research, teaching, and impact activities | Impact of Social Sciences.

from the London School of Economics. This guide also includes the basics of tweeting. It’s a bit light on Twitter plugins to help you run, say, a private group. Of the best way to read your feed. That info would certainly help beginners. Nevertheless, a good start.

Of Don Power’s 3 ways to use Twitter for courses, I’m most interested in ‘sparking discussion’:

“It actually gets the students incorporated into the class” says Alex Teagle, a sophomore at the University of Texas and one of the students participating in the Twitter-enabled history class. Fellow classmate Dave Shallert says that in a class of 90 students, “trying to pipe up and be heard can be a little intimidating,” but in Dr. Rankin’s class “all you have to do is send a tweet from your phone and your opinion is up there for everyone to read,” he added.

Here’s some detailed tips that I’ll have to chew over in coming weeks from the Social Learning Centre.

Have Twitter, but not many followers?

Good tips by Danielle Leitch and a great infographic by Dan Zarrella of Hubspot, of which a taster follows: