Blogging and Forums

Blogging and Forums

Thanks for all your replies last week.

Am still reading theoretical papers concerning blogging in the university context and have a meeting with our Moodle expert on Thursday to see just what possibilities are open to our students via our on-line learning platform (ENT – Environnement Numérique de Travail)

Annick Rivens Mompean makes the difference between a blog ‘as a personal space which others can enter to make comments’ and a forum ‘a common space in which each one can write’. As well as the opposition between personal and common space the question of individual text ownership is pertinent or, as Rivens Mompean puts it the ‘sense of authorship’. The forum is set up by the teacher as part of a pre-defined course (even if they can be added as the course is underway in response to student needs or requests) whereas the blog emanates from the students (individuals or groups?)…

Donna M. Alexander’s paper that Melanie recommended makes for fascinating reading. Particularly useful I think is the notion of code-switching that she defines (paraphrasing (?) Katherine D. Harris) as students’ ability to move ‘fluidly from one mode of communication to another given that their natural habitat as writers, readers, and learners is now a diverse home to many platforms for narrative-making and sharing’. Here, is the conclusion that she draws:

« Katherine D. Harris notes, as I have, the challenges that first and second year students face when trying “to articulate their ideas in complex, sophisticated writing”, and sees the benefits of, instead, inviting them to blog, tweet and make digital and material objects. When we ask them to play, experiment and code-switch, the spotlight on such lofty and daunting articulations is dimmed. This does not mean that we are dumbing down when we ask students to produce something shorter, less traditional, or less formal. In fact, I believe the pressure of writing in public, and the lack of a formal template against which they can model an assignment introduces new challenges.”

To change the subject, for those of you who use corpora, you might be interested in the new 14 billion word iWeb corpus, which was just released. It looks pretty amazing, overwhelming even.

And here’s the link for the writing festival that will be taking place in Montpellier at the end of the week and during which I will be running a plurilingual writing workshop with the poet, Stéphane Page.

Laura has followed me on bloglovin’ and now I am ‘Claiming My Blog’ whatever that implies: Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Have a good week everyone,

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