For the past two years I have been given the oppurtunity to explore numerous Web 2.0 platforms in the sharing of information and interaction with my peers. There is no escaping the fact that the traditional notion of the studio/classroom as the main learning environment is changing and schools and colleges must adapt. Web 2.0 platforms will allow education to go far beyond the classroom, geographical boundaries need no longer exist, Information can be accessed and shared with ease. Some of the platforms which I have explored included Blogs ( Blogger, wordpress), Moodle, Voicethreads, Wikis, Screencast-o- matic, Websites ( Google sites, wordpress, Wix, Squarespace), Google hangouts, Skype, Picassa and Flikr as well as social networking sites such as Google plus, facebook and twitter.
Below I have highlighted the platforms which I felt to be most effective and which I will continue to use in my own work as an educator.
Click on Images to access relevant site.
Working with Web 2.0 Technologies
A blog is an online platform site which allows the author/s to enter infotmation using text or other image based media.These 'posts' are generally place in chronological order with the most recent post placed first. The addition of tags can allow posts to be filed together. Within an educational environment blogs can act as a visual diary in which to record and give critical analysis of ones work and research.In a digital age where video and sound are as relevant to the art and design students work as 2D imagery this platform allows students to showcase and discuss work explored in numerous formats.Current students of mine use blogs for this very reason.This being the third year that they are required to have a blog it is provong to be a very successful platform allowing lecturers to overview the students work outside of tutorials, while getting the student to consider their work in text as well as imagery. This helps them verbalise their ideas with more clarity and ease.
A VoiceThread is a slide show that holds images, texts and video with audio commentary over the presentation. Viewers can navigate the slides and leave either audio, text or video comments if they wish to do so. The use of multimedia slideshows is common place in seminars on art and design topics as the allow for clear presentation of imagery supported by key text.With the addition of commentary, such as a voicethread allows, presentations can be shared with students online.The obvious implication would be that students may not need to be present at a lecture/seminar, however such a format would allow students, having been in attendance, to review a presentation at their own pace and make any additional notes. I intend on using voicethread following some upcoming seminars I am giving, placing the voicethreads on Moodle where students can easily access and review the presentation.
A website is a group of web pages placed together online, and is probably one of the best know online platforms. Websites can contain images, written text, audio and video amongest other media and are generally created with a more formal appoach then platforms such a blog. Often used for commercial purposes the creation of websites by students would encourage them to take a more professional approach to the online display of their work or product. Websites can often be easier to navigate then a blog when sharing particular images or info as clear headings can be used and so could also be employed by the teacher/ lecturer as a platform for communicating information with a class.
Wikis are sites in which a number of users can access and are able to modify, add or delete content, be it text or imagery. As was my experience with using Wiki during my Masters Wikis can work well as a group or community website, allowing all members to contribute to the same online document.This format will be very useful for group projects, allowing students to learn how to work together in an online, cyber environment. Something that is becoming more and more relevant in the work 'place'.
It is worth noting that with all four platforms viewership can be open or restricted, a factor that I feel can be important in
an eduactional environment.