BbWorld13 Breakout Session – Micro-blogging to Increase Engagement

Sprang from: Implementing Twitter into classes as a teaching tool.

Use hashtag #teachwithtwitter to share best practices.

Use of twitter came about from challenge of increasing retention.  What does engagement mean?  Connecting all institutional constituents to the activities of learning, discovery and the academic topics of study.

Twitter allowed use of social media in classes and beyond, tied to institutional mission, programmatic learning outcomes, & class objectives.  Connect to thought leaders in the industry to apply what they are doing to academic work.

Tell students to BYOD to class.  “If I find you on Facebook, “I get to post your status”.

276 students, 13 hasthtags and 10 professors.

Twitter is:

  • a great way to have students do research
  • a great way to connect with thought leaders in industry
  • a great way to engage students and faculty
  • a great way to affirm student knowledge  (retweets, favorites etc..)

Students felt more connected.

Twitter is not:

  • A way for instructors to STALK students
  • A home work reminder tool!

Follow every major leader, mover/shaker in your field.  Prompts prof to prompt students to look at questions they should be thinking about!

Engagement uptick:

Building relationships via tweets and re-tweets.  Students that may not interact in face-to-face environment may feel more comfortable in the twittersphere.  Gain insight into your students through micro-blogging.

Affirming students by:

  • Followers
  • Retweets/Mentions
  • Favorited
  • Direct response/reply
  • Start a hashtag trend!

Bonus Results:  Creating Twitter pages for professional/business uses

In Blackboard – Use Twitter widget to display twitter feed!

Resources: will shorten URLs  (also tracks clicks)
HootSuite, TweetDeck  (HootSuite allows you to schedule tweets – making them relevant to when your followers are reading their feeds)Twitonomy – Metrics on Tweets

Lessons Learned

  • Will continue to do this
  • More training for everyone (hashtag/mention use)
  • Help students understand Twitter (be clear on assignment layout)
  • Don’t assume all Gen Y students are tech savvy
  • Students were afraid of doing it “wrong” based on “multiple choice” mentality
  • Better Balance of quantifiable pieces with softer side

Twitter Assignment 1: Hashtag, you’re it!

  • Current event searches

Twitter Assingment 2: Follow you, Follow me

  • Making Connections to industry Leaders (make a professional account)

Twitter Assignment 3: Tweet That, Tweety Bird

  • Sharing ideas with others