60 seconds on the web….

So how many social interactions do YOU do on the web in an average day?

Take the Poll!

<a href=”http://tiny99.com/969228“>Source</a>

A-Z of Internet Tools and Techniques: Letter G

So here we are with Letter G of the tools and techniques which you can use to get the most out of the Internet.

G stands for….

Google

Okay, so I’m not a big fan of Google, yet I use it lots! When doing academic research there are alternatives that I rely on (see other posts) but for general surfing  I often use Google. Used with caution, with a well thought out search strategy it can be useful!

However it is not just a search engine!

There are many options available

 

Bibliography Scott, Elspeth. (2009). All kinds of e-verything. School Librarian. 57

Research and Referencing for all Year 12 Students

During October I ran a series of workshops for all our Year 12 students entitled “Research & Referencing“. This was part of a series of sessions looking at Study Skills in general, from Time Management and Skimming and Scanning (the latter I created an activity for).

My session was in two parts.

Research

Firstly we discussed the students favourite first ports of call – Wikipedia and Google. Many are aware of the downsides, lack of authority, reliability, volume of hits etc, but very few knew about the alternatives, – they do now!

Screenshot of the Oliver Homepage

Screenshot of the Oliver Homepage

I demonstrated the Oliver Homepage (our OPAC system) and showed them a quick search which found both books and (reliable & educational) websites. I also showed our links to our local library service and the British Library, from which they can, for a small fee, get their hands on out of print books that may be really useful for their studies.

I then demonstrated that from the Oliver Homepage they could gain access to the databases that the MRC subscribes to. The key ones for P16 studies being Britannica Encyclopedia; NewsBank and InfoTrac. I gave a brief demonstration for each of these and encouraged them to give them a try as their teachers will be expecting them to use a wider variety of sources than just Google and Wikipedia. The internal links within Britannica to other journal articles and the Webs Best Bits are invaluable on their own and makes a great starting point for research. Plus no-one will ever know if they use the Primary version to get a really simple definition to help them! With all of these you can save, print and email results – which is a great way of checking with your teacher that you are on the right track.

The second part of the session looked at:

Referencing

I installed Plato onto our VLE back in 2008 and use this fabulous resource when teaching reference skills. I showed a few videos to introduce the concept of Plagiarism or cheating, then asked them to discuss/ answer 5 ‘Plagiarism’ questions with a partner before showing a series of clips about common plagiarism mistakes.

Collusion, Copying, Paraphrasing, and incorrect Citation.

The two most contentious of these were collusion, “but our teacher tells us to work together” and paraphrasing “doesn’t everyone do this?” and led to some interesting conversations with students (Great!).

I shared examples of good practice, and then some video clips I put together (with the aid of Plato) to demonstrate how to reference a book, journal and website. Interesting to find out that some weren’t familiar with the word ‘journal’, and that the date of access is required for websites. I advised them that before they started researching online, they create a Word document and put todays date at the top, all they then need to do is paste in any useful URLs to keep a record.

Another look at the 5 ‘plagiarism’ questions showed that some had changed their minds and answers. When going through the answers the question that sparked the biggest debate was about the copyright symbol not being essential for the ‘work’ (photo, article,video etc) to be protected. During one session we also had a discussion about using Creative Commons.

So I sent them off into the big bad wide world of research and information overload, with a reminder that at any point over the next two years they can come back and ask for a reminder “about that newspaper database you showed us….”, or for guidance about references.

I can only hope that this has helped solve the problem of when I have worked with Year 13 groups who complain that they “should have been shown this at the start of Year 12”. Well this year they have been!

A-Z of Internet Tools and Techniques: Letter F

So here we are with Letter F of the tools and techniques which you can use to get the most out of the Internet.

F stands for….

Flickr

Flickr is an image hosting and video hosting website, and online community that was created in 2004 and acquired by Yahoo! in 2005.

In addition to being a popular website for users to share and embed personal photographs. In 2011 Yahoo reported in  that Flickr had a total of 51 million registered members and 80 million unique visitors. Photos can be accessed easily but you need to register (for free) and sign up for an account to load up your own photos.

Remember to look for photographs that are licensed for use under Creative Commons so you can safely and legally use them.

Check out my previous post on Creative Commons!

Bibliography Scott, Elspeth. (2009). All kinds of e-verything. School Librarian. 57

A-Z of Internet Tools and Techniques: Letter E

So here we are with Letter E of the tools and techniques which you can use to get the most out of the Internet.

E stands for….

EDUCAUSE?

“EDUCAUSE is a nonprofit association whose mission is to advance higher education by promoting the intelligent use of information technology.”

You can subscribe to this service but the website has free access to a range of useful resources such as information about initiatives in learning and using technologies, such as cloud computing.

The “7 Things You Should Know About…” series is definitely worth a look! As they provide information on new technologies. Each gives a brief focus on a single technology and describes what it is, where it is going, and why it matters to teaching and learning.

Bibliography Scott, Elspeth. (2009). All kinds of e-verything. School Librarian. 57

A-Z of Internet Tools and Techniques: Letter D

So here we are with Letter D of the tools and techniques which you can use to get the most out of the Internet.

D stands for….

Distant learners

Distant learners are commonly found in further and higher education and farely rare in schools. However the introduction and prolification of VLE’s (Virtual Learning Environments) and personalised learning are making the concept more common.

VLEs are online platforms for delivering learning resources via the web, allowing students at home or at college and distance learners to make use of the same materials. VLEs include tools for communication, assessment, course management and recording results. Using a Virtual Learning Environment, educators can create online courses with rich interaction.

Make the most of the TDAc VLE, use your class site, check your homework tasks and remember to use the Oliver Homepage when doing research or planning assignements.

Bibliography Scott, Elspeth. (2009). All kinds of e-verything. School Librarian. 57

A-Z of Internet tools and techniques: Letter C

ClickerSo here we are with Letter C of the tools and techniques which you can use to get the most out of the Internet.

C stands for….

Clickers

What are Clickers?

Clickers are a simple remote personal responce system which look at bit like a TV remote control unit, and work in the same way.Clickers use infrared or radio frequency technology to transmit and record student responses to questions. A small, portable receiving station is placed in front of the class to collect and record student resonses. If the teacher wants each clicker can be linked to an indivudual studdent which allows for a unique and identifiable signal and response.

Clickers creates an environment for active participation by all students and provides immediate feedback about any areas of confusion over the content being taught.

For more information click HERE!

Bibliography

Scott, Elspeth. (2009). All kinds of e-verything. School Librarian. 57

A-Z of Internet tools and techniques: Letter B

So here we are with Letter B of the tools and techniques which you can use to get the most out of the Internet.

B stands for….

Bluetooth

“Bluetooth gives wireless communication between devices on an opt-in basis and can be used to transfer information easily.” It is an open wireless technology for communicating over short distances between devices.

So you can have bluetooth mobile phone headsets; headphones; mice; keyboards; printers; speakers; and even games consoles use this technology.

If you have an older PC that does not have Bluetooth embedded then you can get a Bluetooth adapter that will let the PC communicate with other Bluetooth devices. Most recent laptops come with a built-in Bluetooth, if this is missing you will need to get an external gadget, these are called dongles.

Bluetooth Bibliography Scott, Elspeth. (2009). All kinds of e-verything. School Librarian. 57

A-Z of internet tools and techniques: Letter A

Over the next few weeks I’ll be sharing an A-Z of tools and techniques which you can use to get the most out of the Internet.

Starting with the letter A! (Where else?)

A = Audacity http://audacity.sourceforge.net/

This is a free open source sound recorder and editor with which you can easily create and edit audio files. I use it when adding a clip of music or chatter to an MRC Podcast.

You could use it to present your work in an audio way rather than more word based documents. Or you could record yourself or add sounds/music to your presentations.

It is simple to use – have a look and if you need any help just pop to the MRC and we’ll do our best.

Audacity image

Bibliography

Scott, Elspeth. (2009). All kinds of e-verything. School Librarian. 57