Blogs all over the world are being used for very different reasons, from social commentary to making money. Blogging thus has become a vital source of business, information and social interaction. It has also begun to be used within the teaching system, enabling interaction on educational issues outside the normal classroom experience.
The blogging community is vast and varied, making it the perfect way to speak out and discuss topics you are interested in. Discuss particular political issues, hobbies, social debates and information particular to your course. Like online educational journals, blogs can be used for sources of information for you interest or course, with the added bonus that you can directly interact with author and other bloggers to debate and discuss the issue.
Blogging is becoming particularly valuable to shaping the way we learn in an educational setting. The debate element encourages outside of the box thinking and enables a student to articulate themselves in a debate. It is particularly useful for the shier student, who shies away from speaking out load in class, as it allows them to still interact, get across their opinion and debate the topic without feeling uncomfortable.
So what are the main pros of using a blog in an educational setting? It encourages class mates to share, discuss ideas and debate an idea. It essentially allows people to develop their own opinion and enables them to express themselves with not many limitations. It’s a great way for an individual to develop their sense of self, their beliefs and opinions, which is vital to confidence and self-esteem levels and in turn educational performance. Not only this, a blog allows for a great amount of autonomy, allowing the person to keep any information private.
Furthermore, a blog also creates a community in itself, enabling the sharing of information and the creation of friendships. It is a great way to boost teacher-student and student-student relationships by breaking down some of the barriers in the normal classroom setting.
There are a few cons of using a blog in an educational setting as the information may be at times unreliable or biased, simply because it is based on opinion rather than fact. This can be a problem as sometimes educational blogs are seen to be factual in nature, which in often more than not true due to the very medium. Regulation can also be another issue, as rude or undesirable comments may appear time to time. This problem does mean you often have to regulate comments, which can be somewhat time consuming.
A blog if monitored and used correctly for educational purposes can be an ideal platform for discussion and self-expression, as well as a place for community and friendships.