Monday, April 30, 2012

Questions Of The Day: Blogging As Academic Activity Edition

In The Chronicle of Higher Education, Martin Weller writes,
In terms of intellectual fulfillment, creativity, networking, impact, productivity, and overall benefit to my scholarly life, blogging wins hands down. I have written books, produced online courses, led research efforts, and directed a number of university projects. While these have all been fulfilling, blogging tops the list because of its room for experimentation and potential to connect to timely intelligent debate. That keeps blogging at the top of the heap.
I can't come close to matching Weller's achievements, but I do enjoy publishing my ramblings.  Later, Weller asks a two important questions:
So blogging works for me, but it might not work for you. Maybe you're more of a YouTube person, or a podcaster, or maybe your skill really lies in acting as a filter and a curator, using a tool such as Scoop.it, which allows you to curate and share resources on a particular topic. Or maybe you're the trusted source for finding the valuable research in your field. It's clear, though, that our academic ecosystem is a more complex one now. This raises two difficult questions for academics who are expected to do research: First, do these new types of activity count as scholarship? And, if so, how do we recognize and reward them?
College professors, K-12 teachers, and students all have to perform research and report the results of their research; therefore,finding the correct way to reward and recognize the new ways that the results are reported becomes a central question.  How does one grade a YouTube talk or using OneNote to collect and organize information?  How does one deal with parents who are angry that one isn't doing what the parents expect?  How does the tech match up with new state imposed evaluation schemes?

I've got no answers but the questions need to be asked as schools continue to seek to integrate digital technology into their curricula.

2 comments:

caheidelberger said...

One step to integrating digital technology: fixing our servers so that blogspot.com domains aren't reblocked every time someone upgrades the in-house filter software. Rather inconvenient, especially when I use Blogger to post my lesson plans and homework!

caheidelberger said...

I've never really caught fire about integrating blogging into my professional activities. I did blog about my research and classes at DSU, but then as now, my off-duty blog provides my greatest online satisfaction.