tfws12 module twitter assignment

About the Assignment

Blogging is when people publish their ideas for a (mostly) unknown audience in posts of any length. Twittering (or micro-blogging) is when people publish their ideas in a much shorter format to a known audience. The Twitter tweet (the name of each post) is 140 characters long. Just as with blogging, one cannot fully grasp the medium without engaging with it. So, we are going to engage it over the course of the semester as use it, first, as a way to engage our readings outside of class and, second, connect to people who are in fields or have a general interest in areas relating to our research project. These connections will lead us to learning more about our topic from more diverse means than we could have ever thought. It will also provide us with the opportunity to interview someone associated with our research topic (a requirement of the assignment).

So, to get this project under way, we are going to complete the following:

General Twitter Assignments

  • choose 1 person in your professional field outside of class and compose 1 blog post in which you analyze the list of people who they follow; what does their follower list say about them and their interests? (This will count as one of your 2 weekly required posts.)
  • You are required to tweet at least 3 times per day through 2/24 (for Module 1), 3/30 (for Module 2), and 5/4 for Module 3. This is in addition to your “live-tweets”—see below.
  • Of those 3 tweets per day, 1 must be an @reply to or an RT of someone in your professional field. Twitter only works if you begin replying to people. That is, the only way to truly build a professional community is to actively engage with members of that community. As directed above, start following people in your field and begin having conversations with them. Tweets are not blow-horns; the goal is not to shout stuff out into the void. Rather, the goal is to have conversations that are meaningful in a variety of different ways. So, in your tweets, be sure to regularly @reply to people and RT tweets, as well.

Live-Tweeting Readings and Assignments

(This portion of the assignment is stolen and modified from Mark Sample at George Mason University, who stole it from Zach Whalen at the University of Mary Washington.)

Reading and working on assignments are often perceived as a solitary experiences but in our networked society it need not be. In order to help us all engage with the texts and our activities outside of class, and create a collective experience of our workings, I would like you to “live tweet” as you read and work on assignments, posting to Twitter whatever comes to your mind as you read the texts and work on the assignments. By “whatever comes to your mind” I mean things that are about the text and/or what you are working on. Try to limit tweets like, “This article is boring. #yawn,” as such tweets will make to look foolish and show little thought about the text itself. You should @reply to other class members frequently so that we can begin discussions about the texts and what you’re working on outside of the classroom and then continue those discussions when we meet in the classroom. Add the #tfws12 hashtag to all “live tweets.”

There is no required number of tweets to “live-tweet”; but the more you tweet the more engaged the class can and will become in a dialogue outside the class. Do, however, be sure to make it clear which reading or assignment you’re tweeting about. This can be done in the content of the tweet or by using a hashtag for an author’s name (such as #jenkins), and so on. This is important because we want to be sure we know which text you’re tweeting about.

You may also find it fun and worthwhile to live-tweet class meetings. Though, be careful not pay so much attention to Twitter that you are missing out on discussions.

Begin live-tweeting readings immediately and continuing through 2/24 (module 1), 3/30 (module 2), which is the first week into your next module (live tweet those readings), and 5/4 for module 3.

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