As part of my work with the LSE Careers Service I co-facilitated a Webinar about Linkedin for job-hunting students. It was the first time we had offered a webinar and the first time we had run a session specifically on Linkedin. The feedback was very positive:
“A really useful talk and a great way to communicate with the careers service. Thank you”
- 9 out of 12 said they would make more use of Linkedin as a result of attending the webinar
- All 12 participants want the Careers Service to run more sessions as webinars
The webinar covered 4 topics:
- What is Linkedin? Why use it?
- Your Profile – Get Noticed
- Get Connected
- Researching & Getting More Connected
We tried to minimise the chalk-&-talk by building in some interaction: stopping regularly for questions and using the built-in question tools. It is very easy for the mind (& fingers!) to wander off in a Webinar so you need strategies for dealing with this!
A report into “the impact on higher education of students’ widespread use of Web 2.0 technologies”, Higher Education in a Web2.0 World was published last week.
Both staff and students, according to the report, are struggling to see how social web technologies can be applied to learning. It also highlights that face-to-face teaching really matters to students and I’m pretty certain this is true of teachers too!
However, the report suggests that there is a digital divide between students and teaching staff in terms of more general usage of social technologies. While this is undoubtedly true to a certain extent, there is also a danger of overstating it. It’s like the digital native – digital immigrant labelling, it just isn’t that simple. Many students don’t engage with digital technologies and many teachers do.
Anyway, there is a need, as the report indicates, for staff to:
- be technically proficient, i.e. capable of using social web technologies
- make effective use of these technologies for teaching/learning (effective e-pedagogies)
- keep up-to-date with ongoing developments as web-based ‘resources’ continue to grow
The report goes on to suggest that students could help with this. There is some mileage in this, particularly for 1). But in terms of e-pedagogies it seems more likely that for a while to come students will continue to look to teachers for this?
I’ve just finished reading Are digital natives a myth or reality?: Students’ use of technologies for learning (PDF) by Anoush Margaryan & Alison Littlejohn.
I’ve written before about my scepticism of the whole ‘digital natives’ idea: a new generation of students who having grown up with ICT, “have sophisticated technology skills and a whole new set of cognitive capacities”. The findings of this study show that:
…many young students are far from being the epitomic global, connected, socially-networked technologically-fluent digital native who has little patience for passive and linear forms of learning…
…The majority of students use a limited range of technologies for formal and informal learning as well as
socialising. These are mainly established ICTs – institutional VLE, Google and Wikipedia and mobile phones…
…As students look to their lecturers for clues as to how to use technology tools for learning, many lecturers are unaware of the potential of these tools, since they themselves are not using emergent technologies for their own learning and work…
I was slightly suprised to read that poor access to technology, in both classrooms & at home was still an issue for staff and students. Further barriers to staff use of technology included the old chestnut time, as well as a reluctance to change and issues around IT Skills. Interestingly not solely a lack of skills but, for some, a belief that quite advanced IT skills are needed to incorporate technology into teaching.