Thing 4 – Using Blogs to Facilitate Learning

There are so many possibilities with regard to the use of blogging to facilitate the learning process. What is so neat about using blogs is you can use this technique as a “bridge” for students between the student and the subject. By using the tools that they already know and use you can connect them personally with the subject. Anne Davis, the author of this blog referenced: “Blogs help learners to see knowledge as interconnected as opposed to a set of discrete facts”. With the help of blogs, learning has morphed into a collaborative, discovery process. This author also points out that “blogging provides the possibility of connecting with experts on the topic students are writing.” It provides students with the ability to learn from authorities in the field that they are studying providing an expanded learning experience.

Another blog referenced two points that distinguish the usefulness of blogging in education. In this case the author, Bo Adams, uses a type of “micro” blogging with the social media network, Twitter. By publishing his blog through social media he was able to create a conversation about his thoughts on a topic with individuals that are 2nd and 3rd connections or even those he has never met. He mentions two points in the usefulness of this technique. The first is that blogging offers “encouragement and interaction from a wider, more authentic audience”. Bo states that he was able to receive engagement from a broad audience of people all over the world to engage with his post. This is something he points out that he wouldn’t have had otherwise in just an isolated classroom experience of local students. He also mentions that with this interactive learning there are “opportunities to engage in civil discourse to develop one’s thinking and understanding”. Using this type of social media engagement he is able to get into a civil discussion about the topic and consider other points of view and gain more understanding.

It is very interesting to explore the vast potential of expanding the learning process using Blogs especially with regard to the 2013 student. They have a whole new world to explore with learning at their very fingertips at any time of day. It is an exciting, Brave New World!

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