Dr. Tony Karrer is the Chief Technical Officer of TechEmpower and is considered an expert in the field of e-learning. He has stated that “Twitter is not a tool for people who are new to social media and the use of social media for personal learning and work”.
I tend to agree with Dr Karrer. As a novice user of Twitter, I often feel bombarded with information and begin to assume that supposed experts in the social media (or any other) field are always correct. There is almost too much information available and I tend to take these “experts” at face value often without researching their credibility. Sometimes I am simply overwhelmed by the sheer volume and have not yet learned to filter out what I do not need.
Further, I’m not confident in my Twitter skills and tend to sit and watch the rest of world try to shape my opinions. While I understand that Twitter is not meant to be interactive, I don’t feel I have the credentials to “tweet” or respond to a comment. Hopefully, this is something I will learn with time.
Quite often, I have friends who tweet about what they did at school or work, had for dinner, and the latest personal news. I don’t believe this is the best format in which to share personal details. While I applaud their learning and use of new social media outlets, it seems most of their activity would be best suited for Facebook. Facebook is more about my own personal community of friends and family and what is happening specifically to them. While not truly interactive, Facebook is very simple to respond to and make comments.
I do believe Twitter has great potential as an e-learning tool in certain circumstances. For instance, learners could be coached on this tool and access training when there is minimal information to be conveyed and it is presented in a clear concise format. Again, learners must be aware of the expectation of when and how they should use Twitter. If designed for a particular learning group, Twitter could be an effective addition to a trainer’s bag of tricks. As with any other use of social media, the choice of medium depends on the goals of the writer. What is it to be communicated to your learner and the expected response?
Hart, J. (2012) Top 100 Tools for Learning. Center for Learning and Performance Technologies. Retrieved from: http://c4lpt.co.uk/top-100-tools-2012/
Karrer, T. September 12, 2012. Training Magazine Network Now Bringing You eLearning. Learning E-Learning Technology. Retrieved from: http://elearningtech.blogspot.com
Kuhlmann, T. August 4, 2009. Three Practical Ideas for using Twitter in E-learning. The Rapid E-Learning Blog. Retrieved from: http://www.articulate.com/rapid-elearning/three-practical-ideas-for-using-twitter-in-e-learning/