Edublogs webinar overview – Social Media With Students?


This Fine Focus session was really a spin-off from last week’s Serendipity session where we touched on using Twitter with students but didn’t really have time to explore the issues. This was a great session with lots of whiteboard activity and as usual the session was recorded.

The Session

Although the session title refers to “social media” this is such a massive topic that I focussed on social networking with students and chose what are probably the two most well known and widely different from one another social networks – Twitter and Facebook. I then added in GooglePlus because although this is very new I suspect it will ultimately be extensively used with students because of the way circles can be used.

We started with some polling to find out where everyone was “coming from” on using social networks with students. Next we set the scene with a brief look at some recent items on social netwroks with students including two short videos. This led on the the quesion of whether we should use this type of tool with students – the poll result was a resounding “Yes” and we quickly filled a whiteboard with the positives and negatives.

The next considerations were the contexts and circumstances in which we might use social networking with our students. This was followed by sharing how (if we currently do) we use one or more of these with students. We finished with a poll on whether we now felt it was more likely that we would use these with students. There is also a slide with live links for the videos and some other items of interest for social networking with students.


This session worked well – it followed a similar pattern to most of the other discussion type topics that I facilitate in Fine Focus sessions. As is often the case I felt that I talked too much, however everyone seemed to enjoy the session. The use of video was something I don’t do often – although I have recently been showing colleagues how to incorporate it via the multimedia window. It worked fairly well although the videos did not play for one participant despite being mp4 and so likely to be playable by the majority of people. This is one of the reasons that I tend to avoid video the other is bandwidth and download time issues. Even though both videos were small files they still took considerable time to download to participants after they joined the room, so it isn’t a good idea to play videos very early in the session. However I will be trying to include more video because I feel it is something I need to become more familiar with.

Next Webinar

Our next session is an Edublogs “Serendipity” session on Thursday September 15that 23:00 GMT/UTC (Afternoon/Evening USA) or Friday September 16th at 7am West Aus, mid morning Eastern States Aus depending on your timezone (check yours here) – in the usual Elluminate room. This is one of our fortnightly unconference sessions where we invite you to bring along your “hot topics” and “burning issues” for our poll on the topic

6 thoughts on “Edublogs webinar overview – Social Media With Students?

  1. Another great session. I’m still working through things with that parent I mentioned, but I think there’s light at the end of the tunnel. I think Twitter will work out in the end, which is more important to me than the cell phone use, so I’ll take what I can get. Thank you again for hosting a great webinar!

    • Thank you Tracy – sorry for the slow reply! Sometimes I guess too much knowledge can be almost as bad as too little – especially for someone who spends time dealing with the negatives in the online world for others. It can perhaps make one overly conscious of the risks.

  2. Hi Jo, yes i’ve used FB as you know, I haven’t tried twitter yet but wonder if you would need a hashtag, to collate the group, and then probably sts would get the spelling wrong, or forget it, then their comments would get lost in my twitter stream but maybe not in each others. (as they would follow less ppl)
    G+ could be a goer, have to experiment a bit first.
    Off topic:why is each recording so fuzzy? It doesn’t do it justice at all, esp when I tried it on the overhead & loud speakers (a play back to sts on their sess last month) (‘E-stuff’)
    I liked the use of the multi-media you played Jo, nice touch, keep at it. It gives the sess another voice and also one that you can base opinions on. (Esp if a politician is promoting SM) and in this case, it answered the question about can you use twitter with very young sts)-yes, they already are!
    Loved you comment,”We’re a social species so if we make learning social, it’s going to work better”
    Yay..for serendipitous learning!
    Thanks Jo & pedant Phil!

    • I think you might need some way to track the group. I have a VocEd list for VocEd people and then I use a Tweetdeck column to follow tweets from that specific group. Using a list on your class name might be a solution – assuming that anyone following a list can then search/create a column for it.

      Sorry the playback quality was not very good – I have asked a few others and they seem to have found it OK. I sometimes find that when I playback a recording I need to tweak the playback volume a bit throughout because I get a bit of distortion if it is too loud.

      Thank you for the comment about the mm – I am making a determined effort to try and use more! Please feel free to “nag” me if I don’t 🙂

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  4. Jo — as it turned out, I’ve been shut down for cell phones AND twitter use. I’m still shaking my head. Very frustrated, but onward and upward.

    Jane — I agree with Jo about creating a class hashtag. Depending on your subject area, there may already be some in existence that you can use to have your students connect with their peers around the world. (French students use #parlons, for example). For further monitoring, is great — it will give all kinds of different stats as well as an archive of tweets from whatever hashtag you choose.

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