tfws13 twitter assignments

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 professional interests.

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

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 #tfws13 hashtag to all “live tweets.”

There is no required number of tweets to “live-tweet,” but I suggest around 3 tweet s per reading so we can start to have an exciting 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 #wesch), 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.

When to Start
Begin live-tweeting the readings and your work during week the assignment is handed out and continue through 3/8 (module 1) 4/11 (module 2) or 5/7 (module 3).

Engaging with your Future Professional Community

Twitter is an excellent medium for expanding your professional community, and to engage with people in your future field. Future employers are going to expect you to know how use Twitter for professional purposes so this is an opportunity to start doing that.

The following is to be started on Monday, 2/18 (module 1) Monday, 3/25 (module 2), Monday, 4/22 (module 3):

  • You are required to tweet at least 3 times per day. This is in addition to your “live-tweets.”
    • 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.
  • begin following people in your professional field. To help fine people, use: Twitter Search, Listorious, Twellow, Google, and by seeing who people follow. You can also check out these two posts: Top 100 Edu Tweeters and 100 Professors You Should Follow and Learn from on Twitter. There is no required number of people to follow, but if you are using Twitter effectively, by the end of the module I suspect you will be following upwards of 75 people (or a 75 more than you currently follow).
  • those who are pursuing careers in Education, you might start by following Jon Becker, Assistant professor of educational leadership at Virginia Commonwealth University, and Suzanne Tiedemann, Art Teacher in South Brunswick NJ. Look through their list of followers and who they are following. Follow people and organizations and go from there.

Required Blog Post due by 2/22 (module 1), 3/29 (module 2),  4/26 (module 3):
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 be in addition to your 2 weekly required posts.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *