Blogging Across the Disciplines: Integrating Technology

September 30, 2007

As the use of web logs (blogs) becomes increasingly popular, many faculty members have incorporated them into college courses to engage students in discussing course materials, to foster a sense of community, and to enhance learning. This study, conducted at a business institution, introduces blogs as a tool to help students prepare for meaningful classroom discussion. The authors assigned a similar blogging exercise in three different courses—expository writing, e-commerce, and government–in order to introduce students to the use of blogs in their disciplines. This study finds that by completing the required readings and then posting discussion questions and reflections on topics of interest to which their classmates can respond–essentially beginning the conversation prior to the class session–students become more engaged in the course material. This exercise requires students not only to read the required course materials but to engage with them critically in order to move beyond a superficial understanding of the materials. By using the same assignment and assessment tool in three different courses, the authors argue that blogs can be effective in enhancing class discussion across the disciplines.

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