Welcome to Week 3

Welcome to Week 3

by Therese Weel -
Number of replies: 14

Welcome to week 3 of the Using Social Media in Education session presented by SCoPE and BC Campus.

For those of you who were busy with the holiday festivities in the US, here is a summary of the highlights from last week.

Last Week

  • Sandy Hirtz presented the group with an opportunity to participate in the Collaborative Book Project - and provided an online information session on Thursday. If you have a contribution, especially on the subject of social media, contact Sandy, she can give you more information on how to participate.

This Week

This week our discussions will focus on implementation and innovation when using social media in education. A live elluminate session with Brian Lamb will take place on Thursday.

Week 3 Theme: Implementation & Innovation
(Starting Monday Nov 26 - Wrapup Sunday Dec 2)
  • issues around use of social media in formal education
  • Privacy, ethics, administration
  • Patriot Act US hosting concerns
  • Innovations that resolve the above issues
  • Emerging trends and the future

Featuring a live presentation with Brian Lamb

Brian Lamb | Exploration, Implementation, and Innovation

  • Thurs November 29 10:00 AM Vancouver time (see world clock)
    Join Brian Lamb, Manager, Emerging Technologies and Digital Content with the Office of Learning Technology at University of British Columbia for this live session to SEE what the possibilities for using social media in education.
This session forms part of the 3-week Social Media in Education seminar organized in collaboration with BCcampus Online Communities.
In reply to Therese Weel

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by Cristina Costa -
Hi Therese and all,

These last two weeks I have been a lurker - but this week I intend to be more participative. Just to let you know that although you haven't heard that must from me - a part from my introduction post - I am following everything with much interest. You are doing a great job and I would like to thank all moderators, and participants too, for this opportunity.
Looking forward to week 3 discussion. :-)
In reply to Therese Weel

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by Deirdre Bonnycastle -
Here is a video of scientists talking about why open access is essential for the dissemination of scientific research. . It is the introduction to a new UTube site for Biomedical publishing. One of the best tools for the type of open access they are referring to, is social media.
In reply to Deirdre Bonnycastle

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by David Brear -
Deirdre, thanks for sharing this video clip. I feel we are entering a new age of information sharing. Today's generation through UTube, Facebook and MySpace and other social media tools are showing us the way.
In reply to David Brear

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by Cristina Costa -
Indeed David.
The paradigm of education and the way we access, share and provide information is definitely changing. The students' needs and requirements and the students' expectations are also changing. I really enjoyed watching the video, because this is the rounteI hope one day all school and education institutions will take.
In reply to Therese Weel

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by Tia Carr Williams -

Week Three Resources:

I have selected a first batch that demonstrates the integration of social media.

edu 2.0, meaning 'next generation education'.
Make teaching and learning more efficient and enjoyable.
Free web-based education site with comprehensive features for teachers, students and parents.
Anyone can teach and/or learn using the system, whether it's at school, at home, or on the move.http://www.edu20.org/


1) Sharing your story
Got a camera and some friends? Go have fun, and put the result on Viddler. Want some exposure for the movie you made at film school? Put it on Viddler—it gives you the opportunity to reach out to thousands of viewers online.

2) Making search results relevant
Since Viddler searches inside the content of videos, our users have a lot of flexibility when it comes to finding new material to watch. Search for any object, person, or place and the results will be staring you in the face with exactly what you wanted.

3) Bringing users together
Social networking is a big part of Viddler. Users can make friends and send messages to each other, but what really allows people to get their voice heard is timed commenting, which lets them discuss specific moments in a video, rather than just talking about the video as a whole.


Fourteen years ago The George Lucas Educational Foundation was created to celebrate and encourage innovation in schools. Since then we have discovered many creative educators, business leaders, parents, and others who were making positive changes not only from the top down but also from the bottom up. Since that time we have been telling their stories through our Web site, our documentary films, and Edutopia magazine.

Along the way, we listened and learned. Nothing is simple when strengthening and invigorating such a vast and complex institution as our educational system, but common ideas for improvement emerged. We've distilled those into this ten-point credo.

In the coming year, we will publish a series of essays that further explores each aspect of this agenda, with the hope that those on the frontlines of education can make them a part of their schools.

Engage: Project-Based Learning
Connect: Integrated Studies
Share: Cooperative Learning
Expand: Comprehensive Assessment
Coach: Intellectual and Emotional Guide
Learn: Teaching as Apprenticeship
Adopt: Technology
Reorganize: Resources
Involve: Parents
Include: Community Partners


The shape of things to come (already here in fact):



In reply to Therese Weel

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by Clint Lalonde -
This topic caught my attention since we are currently doing some research on the privacy implications of having our students sign up for accounts with hosted services.

One example we have been wrestling with is that, from my understanding of the law here in BC, a student's email address counts as personal information that institutions have an obligation to protect. Given that the vast majority of web based social tools require an email address to create an account, is it a breech to require students to use their email address to sign up for an account?

I've found some docs at SFU and UBC that are not specific to social tools, but advice on using web based survey tools. But some of the principles may be applicable to other web based tool. The UBC document specifically mentions email addresses...

"Email addresses are considered personal information, unless they are a business e-mail addresses, and cannot be disclosed to survey companies outside of Canada without the consent of the individuals."

Options we have been considering are to get the written consent of students before asking them to sign up for these tools and possibly hosting blogs and wikis internally. But there is administrative overhead to both of these. Plus, when we move beyond blogs and wikis to other tools, like del.icio.us or Google docs...well there is no way we can create and maintain tools like that in house. Nor would we want to create a walled garden when the whole point of these tools is transparency and potential collaboration with others.

I'm curious as to whether other institutions (particularly other BC based institutions) have defined institutional policies regarding using web based tools that require students to sign up for accounts and give up a piece of personal information.

Here are the links to the 2 documents regarding web tools from SFU and UBC.
SFU: http://www.sfu.ca/itservices/onlinetools/
UBC: http://www.webcommunications.ubc.ca/

In reply to Clint Lalonde

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by steve pallett -

If students used their college email addresses and college address (not sure about date of birth etc. though), then doesn't this make them 'business' email addresses and thus, not personal? No harm done...?

I think the biggest issue is the second one you mention - the overhead of mainatining blogs and wikis in-house, and the fact that different staff and students will have preferences for one type of public service over another, and usually always in preference to an in-house service.

Additionally, when students leave the college they have all that info still in their 'personal' wiki/blog etc. and don't have to worry about access to info held at the college. This may be crucial for portfolio purposes?


In reply to steve pallett

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by Cristina Costa -
Dear Steve,
I couldn't agree more with what you have just said. That is exactly the kind of speech I adopt when talking to my staff about it.

At Salford we use Blackboard and someone had this illuminated idea of purchasing the Learning Objects to go with it: blogs and wikis for a closed environment. What a joke! It is hardly ever used. It offers a bad structure, no scope for creativity or personalization and when the academic year finishes and teh Blackboard modules roll-over you can kiss your blog and wiki goodbye. And I still haven't complaint about the fact that having blogs and wikis within a closed VLE totally mines the initial, and fundamental, purpose of such activities as blogging and wikiing (is this verb already officially recognized as such? :-) ) which is related with their (learning) social aspect.
I just can't understand how people can even consider to have blogs and wikis which are doomed to be excluded from blogsphere and wikiland, and more important even, that don't offer students the chance of keeping the work they themselves have created and the links and bonds that were developed during that process.

The institutional system sometimes does get in the way!
And of course the same happens with e-portfolios, which in my opinion are the CV of the future.
Why can't the students keep them after they leave school and the academic world?
Wales has come with a great initiative, offering any citizen with a Welsh zip code the chance to create an e-portfolio for free and keep it.
I think the Ministries of Education out there, as well as other authorities in the field like the European Union, should be looking at the sustainability of the solutions we aim to provide to benefit the student experience.

Just my 2 cents!

In reply to Cristina Costa

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by Tia Carr Williams -

Fresh from the press..a great article about social media optimisation and the benefits.

P2P and Human Happines

By Michel Bauwens, michelsub2003@yahoo.com, http://p2pfoundation.net

The emergence of distributed networks, defined by capacity of agents to freely determine their actions and relations, and of the internet and the social web in particular, have created a new set of technological affordances creating a broad range of open knowledge and open design communities functioning according to a ‘peer to peer’ social logic. These communities have set in motion a new set of social processes for the creation of value, which we could summarize as peer production (the ability to produce in common), peer governance (the capacity to self-organize) and peer property (the capacity to make common production universally available).  The social web has created the possibility to create complex social services, and ‘productive systems’, through the global coordination and scaling of small group processes  of mass participation, moving them from the periphery of social life to its very center.

The aim of this paper is to describe the characteristics of this new social process, and to see how they are specifically related to the issue of human happiness.

In reply to Cristina Costa

Re: Welcome to Week 3 - sustainable solutions

by steve pallett -

I graduated from University of Salford! (many moons ago...)

At the Uni of Ballarat (Australia) we're in the process of getting to grips with social networking technologies and what some of the legal implications may be. It seems that many (olderthoughtful?) academics are keen on the 'walled garden' and 'sage on the stage' approach, whereas students are already using more peer-to-peer technologies, and prefer the 'guide on the side' approach. Is the customer always right?

In the end I guess it is up to the academics to decide what mix of technologies to use and how to use them, but we can't progress without some sort of legal guideleines and long-term strategy, otherwise we're doomed...

The Welsh idea sounds good; definitely a step in the right direction.


In reply to steve pallett

Re: Welcome to Week 3 - sustainable solutions

by Cristina Costa -
Hi Steve,
what a coincidence! The world is getting smaller and smaller....or better, it is getting closer and closer! :)

Here in Salford it is my experience that the learning technology adopters are not so much related with the age factor, but with the wiling to innovate and the courage to leave the comfort zone. I have talked to many young academics who don't even want to hear about it. They are pleased with the fact that they are knowledgeable and think students should feel very lucky to have expertise knowledge being transmitted to them. And although expertise is needed, the way it is being transferred to the less experts (the students) is not the best way. Although many speak about the "digital natives", and that everyone want to learn in an active way, it is not so, simply because many students are not used to that kind of approach. What we are creating is a easy and fast society where everything is taken for granted, instead of a society of values where hard work and initiative are praised. Students are getting all the information for "free". They are pleased with the reading lists they are given by the lecturers, and many won't even bother to take it further and try to deep their own knowledge through different means and ways, simply because they are used to be fed and not to look for their own food (for thought).
On the other hand, I also have older academic staff to going the different direction and wanting to try this new approach, which is great. I have encountered a little bit of everything in this my new experience here in Salford.

Yesterday, I started a Blogs and wiki session with PGR students and also invited academic staff to join in. Not many showed up, but some did. As part of the sesson we had two PGR students from the Open University who have created research blogs to get in touch with a wider community and also to reflect about what they are doing. One of the things they remarked was that having blogs in blogger what a better solution than the one the institution offers, because they know that there is a good chance that once they finish their academic experience the blog will still be online for others to see and for them to go back to their knowledge base and learning progress record.
One of the speakers even remarked that the institution deletes one's blog after students leave the university and that is like throwing the students' notes in the bin, as they were worth nothing".
That tells a lot and that observation is a lesson we must learn, and fast: listen to the students. They are entitled to express their opinion and to make their needs and expectations known. After all, if there were no students, there wouldn't be universities and school, and that is something we tend to forget. We focus on what is best for the institution and the academic staff, and usually tend to forget the aspirations of our clients: the students. As we also forget to inspire them with new and innovative learning approaches and opportunities!
I totally agree that new legal, and more flexible guidelines must be decided very soon!
In reply to steve pallett

Re: Welcome to Week 3

by Clint Lalonde -
The distinction of it being a business email address comes from an advisory paper written by UBC. I'm not sure that stipulation occurs in the provincial legislation we are governed by. Which is why I'm looking for a bit of clarity. Perhaps my question is a bit too location specific.

As for the public vs. walled garden issue, I couldn't agree more. The point of social tools is to be social and extend beyond the scope of the institution. I also love the idea of students being able to take the information with them when they leave. But before we can jump headfirst into this world, we really need feel comfortable that we as an institution, are doing what is required by the law in our province/country.

As Sylvia has pointed out, issues regarding where data is stored is also a concern. Our lawyers have pointed us to section 30 and 33 of the British Columbia Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, which might be of interest to some of you reading this in BC.

In reply to Therese Weel

US patriot act - hosting concerns

by Sylvia Currie -
The sub-heading under our Week 3 topics that really caught my attention was the US patriot act and hosting concerns.

I'm been skimming articles to get up to speed with this:
What does this all mean for us who plan to use social media in education?

In reply to Sylvia Currie

Re: US patriot act - hosting concerns

by Tia Carr Williams -


Its very alarming. Here are some commentaries on this:



The Patriot Act,
Terrorism & the Bill of Rights

By Alan Shapiro


To the Teacher:

The Patriot Act is a hotly debated law very few have read and about which there is a good deal of ignorance and misunderstanding. Many questions have been raised about the new law. Among them: Does it violate the Bill of Rights and the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution? And if it does, should the gravity of the terrorist threat require such extra-constitutional measures?

The opening exercise offers students an opportunity to learn something about the Patriot Act and to grapple with some of its controversial provisions. Two readings and the questions that follow aim to explore those and other provisions and a values conflict. Most Americans value the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. Most Americans also want to combat terrorist threats effectively. Can the latter be done without damage to the Bill of Rights and the Constitution?



American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, “USA Patriot Act

Issues for Campuses,”


American Bar Association, “USA Patriot Act: The Good, the Bad, and the Sunset,” John



American Civil Liberties Union, “Freedom under Fire: Dissent in Post-9/11 America,”


“Insatiable Appetite: The Government’s Demand for New and Unnecessary Powers after

September 11.”

“Unpatriotic Acts: The FBI’s Power to Rifle through your Records and Personal

belongings without telling you.”

American Libraries Association,


Congressional Research Service, The Library of Congress,


Council on Law in Higher Education,


Electronic Privacy Information Center,


Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act,

FERPA@Ed.Gov and


USA Patriot Act,