Twitter – a Powerful Communication Tool for Educators
To date, Twitter has been in a holding pattern for me. I know I was not alone when I told myself I had no need for another networking site and “At first glance, Twitter [didn’t] appear to hold much value.” The networking tool first interested me years ago, when the buzz primarily revolved in and around business professionals. When students started getting on board, I stepped away from the application entirely. I will forever be a true advocate of keeping personal and professional lives separate. And so Twitter was left in the bag of tools, unopened. However, the article, “How Twitter can be used as a powerful educational tool” by authors Alan November and Brian Mull, identifies what I feel is a vital key to making Twitter a productive tool for communication and collaboration. Not only do the authors clarify the mystery of the hashtag, they also share what I consider the key component in making this tool fundamentally useful. “If you’re interested in a topic, but you don’t know of a hashtag that will be helpful with your research, simply do a search in Twitter using a keyword rather than a hashtag. Then, scan the results to see what hashtags people are using when they are discussing that particular topic.” Finally some meaning to the hashtag process! With the help of this article, I can now understand how Twitter can bring “authentic experiences to our students”. Guess it’s time to open that bag of tools and join the global education community on Twitter. Sweet Tweets!