This week we are supposed to write a blog post related to connected learning procedure for our GEDI (Graduate Education Development Institute) class. I think about blogging as a learning tool and I’d like to share my idea that how the new social media such as Facebook and Instagram cause a deterioration of knowledge and learning on web. I want to write about my own experience when I was in college in Iran. Back to early of 2000, people started using the internet in Iran gradually and when I entered to college in 2003 young people are the main users of the internet in Iran. At that time writing a blog was very popular among youth and Persian was one of the active languages in blogging space. There was not any other social network and media platform at that time in Iran and people try to connect with each other through blogging. This is a very amazing phenomenon in a society like Iran. Bloggers learned from each other, they became friends virtually and then went out to a coffee shop or park to be familiar better in real world. This phenomenon had a great effect on Iran among youth. Writing a blog helped people to learn more: people had to read more to write better and have more audiences. Even those people who wrote some emotional stuff also need to be up-to-date. In contrast to other media such as Facebook, blogging needs deep thinking, writing effectively and properly with correct dictation and grammar. However, Facebook has much more informal platform: people are connected to each other informally and in a shallow way. On Facebook, you share your feeling or photos and sometimes your idea but the platform is not suited for dialogue. However, on a blog, a blogger thinks about an idea and shares it with his/her audiences and the audiences share their ideas and opinions through comments. This platform is much more suited for dialogue and learning. When I compare the atmosphere of Farsi blogs and Farsi Facebook, it is completely obvious for me how shallow is Facebook and how deeply learning happens in blogs. I think we need to come back to a social network such as blogs as a useful tool for connected learning: It gives us a structure to think deeply, write correctly and reply to our friend in a mutual respectful situation and thus we will have a society which individuals are connected to each other through a learning platform.
Learning Process through blogging
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6 Responses to Learning Process through blogging
Thanks for sharing. It’s great to see how connected learning was happening in Iran back in 2003. I always like to hear about the benefits of using technology to enhance social interactions to improve learning.
I also will like to share some of my experiences with social media in the learning environment. I have used social media (blogging, twitter, facebook, instagram, snapchat, google+) for several academic purposes, mostly teaching and recruiting students for my department (Engineering Education). In my experience I have found that different social media platforms serve different purposes, and I have found value in all of them.
For example, even when I agree with you on how shallow Facebook can be, when I was teaching industrial engineering courses back in Venezuela, if I was not on Facebook I was not connecting with my students. Facebook was the only social network that they were constantly using, and for me at that time it was very valuable. I used not only to connect and get to know more my students, but I also used it to overcome some of the issues you are mentioning. For example, I remember one class that we took some time to see their Facebook profiles and I was able to show them how potential employers could find information about them that probably was not the best.
I think beyond getting to know them better it was a great mentoring experience. Ultimately I believe as instructors we need to catch up with the social network platforms that our students are using to be able to talk on their same “language”
Again thanks for sharing.
It is nice to read your experiences and your ideas. I understand your point and I truly agree with that. My point related to Iran, is Facebook unfortunately dominate all social media atmosphere and these days few people write blogs frequently and we don’t have those phenomenon our society has experienced a decade ago. Fortunately, telegram is new app which become very popular in Iran recently ( and it can be used much easily because it is not filtered yet while facebook is filtered and it is hard to use it if you are inside Iran). The telegram groups (not channels) give a good tool to users to communicate and talk with each other and this is very good option because people can share their ideas and talk with each other more effectively compare to Facebook.
Thank you both for sharing your experiences with social media. It is always interesting to see how different people can have such unique experiences with the same platforms. Having said that, I would also like to share my own experiences with social media. Like Atiyeh, I have found Facebook to be more of a place to share social experiences and thoughts than academic ones. It is definitely less formal. However, I have had similar experiences with blogs. I have found just as many blogs ranting about a person’s experiences with his/her significant other and recitations of their previous night’s drinking escapades as I have thoughts on life and knowledge. To me, this highlights one of the problems with this idea of “being connected” and that is that I feel we are actually more disconnected than ever. Yes, we are able to discuss ideas and thoughts (social or otherwise) with people all over the world opening up a larger forum for discussion. However, I feel that this is taking away a lot of the importance of person-to-person contact. Blogs and Facebook are allowing us to read about things others are doing or thinking but the lack of physical interaction, I think, is detrimental. Again, just my opinion, but I think we are in danger of creating a society that can type out a conversation and post it somewhere, but that doesn’t feel comfortable being able to walk into a room with other people and interact.
Thank you very much slc2003 for your comments.
My first sentence totally verify your comment. you share your idea with me and it gives me a good sense that someone read my post and tell his/her idea but even I don’t know your name! I need to call you slc2003 and it is uncomfortable.
Your comment is true from ontological point of view. Our life is going to be emptied from real social interaction while it is full of virtual ones. and in my view, it makes human beings to be alone. I mean we all are alone in this world but the modern life and technology reminds us this bitter reality on daily basis that “we are alone.” In this sense, pre-modern people lived psychologically healthier.
I agree with you that Blogging can be more of less more reflective than social media like facebook and twitter. But I would suggest to treat them as different things. How we evaluate things depends on what we expect from them, doesn’t it? We cannot expect a football player to perform like a soccer player, can we? Maybe facebook is precisely designed for the purpose of “shallow” communication as you said, and it perfectly serves some people’s needs. Of course, I am not against “deep” communication and it certainly should be respected, but there is no reason to urge everybody to perform such kind of communication. Maybe most people just want to carry out some time saving communication on facebook, and if they like each other, they will find other ways to carry out “deep” communication. Just keep in mind multiple choice is good.
Thank you so much for this Atiyeh! I’ve heard from others that the early years of blogging were especially empowering and important in Iran, and I’m glad you brought that to our attention. The point you make about apps, and Facebook in particular is also worth stressing. There is much to be said for the open web – one that is not confined within the walls of a particular interface or app. This came across my radar a couple of days ago and makes this argument more compellingly than I can here: http://scripting.com/liveblog/users/davewiner/2016/01/20/0900.html