Blogs

Blogs (short for 'weblogs') are often used by individuals as a kind of public diary or for commentary on current events. Many are politically-oriented for this reason. Often written with short articles of a single paragraph or half a page, blogs are usually updated frequently, sometimes even several times per day. Viewers of blogs can surf in the usual fashion to that webpage, but many receive the blog update in a 'subscription' format.

Known as RSS (short for 'real simple syndication'), the subscription service is free and automated from all blog-hosting websites. Users simply click the RSS button and request that future blog entries be delivered to them via RSS. Most users do not ask RSS to be delivered as an email to them; instead, they frequently check a webpage that lists all at once multiple RSS 'feeds' from different sites, and thus provides an at-a-glance view of many recent posts.

RSS reader sample

Instructors may wish to use blogs to provide an additional way to communicate with students who are used to visiting an RSS Reader. Strategies for using a blog for instructional purpose include:

  • providing Internet links to current events of relevance to course content
  • posing timely questions about the reading material in the course
  • offering provocative or controversial questions for discussion (students can comment with a single click on each blog post, and engage each other in dialogue in this fashion)

Blogs can be created for free at multiple sites, including http://www.blogger.com (also known as BlogSpot), WordPress, and http://www.typepad.com.

 

Faculty Spotlight View Other Award Winners

Susan Quelly
College of Nursing Susan  Quelly There are many people who are experts in their specific profession or discipline. Some of these people impart knowledge and wisdom while facilitating others to critically think, learn, and achieve great intellectual, psychomotor, and/or emotional growth…we call these people “teachers.” It is no different...

Christopher Parkinson
College of Sciences Christopher   Parkinson As a hyperactive, quickly bored child, I presented a sizable challenge to my teachers. Conventional teaching methods did not work with me, but if given a problem to solve, I spent many hours and tried many strategies in my attempts to figure it out. My reluctance to use conventional learning styles then became an ...

Bruce M. Wilson
College of Sciences Bruce M. Wilson I see teaching as a multi-faceted endeavor where the role of the teacher is to provide students with excellent training in Political Science, to equip them with the skills to succeed in their careers, and to become lifelong learners. In my classes, I emphasize critical-thinking and writing skills and expose studen...