Evolution – The Blogging Scholar

It began with a Blog...
It began with a Blog…

The final session of the University of Wyoming Evolution Conference was again with Dr. Deb Beck. She presented on the “Blogging Scholar.” It was a look at her adventures to become a globally known blogger and sharer of research.

Beck explained it is not enough to just put your work in journals. You have to also share it with the world through other media. Not only does Beck blog, but she is also active with Pinterest and Twitter. She shared a collection of articles related to public scholarship. However, the blog, Laramie Board Learning Project, is the focal point for Dr. Beck’s sharing.

This Laramie Board Learning Project began as a class assignment orchestrated by Dr. Christi Boggs. The purpose was to share research results; Beck used it to contribute to nonprofit boards.

Beck has earned a global reach with her blog, and while many people comment on her blog postings, most conversation actually occurs in Twitter.  She stressed the importance of using Twitter as part of being a public scholar. While you can share your work in a variety of ways, Twitter is a powerful tool for getting the word out. She also recommended becoming members of online communities, and actively participating in discussions.

To begin using Twitter and other social media sites, start with a listening post, and then expand to contributing.  The connections you make are the key for getting your word out. She reflected her amazement on how easily and quickly you could establish connections with leaders in the field. Famous people such as speakers and writers are very willing to interact with you. Connections also lead to other opportunities; she noted an number of speaking and writing collaborations as a result of connections made.

Twitter chats are great ways to learn. Twitter chats are also a key method for establishing connections and sharing ideas. Twitter lists are a great way to focus on topics or specific groups of people. Hashtags great way to filter conference or classroom proceedings. Paper.li is another great way to collect and share Twitter feeds. Here are the Paper.lis that Dr. Beck runs:

Beck shared other ideas for helping to get the word out. For example, her blog has a Facebook page. This helps get the word out to a different audience. Pinterest is also a good place to put your posts; there are lots of educators on Pinterest. Beck also uses a wiki to support her blog. She also recommends posting to SlideShare and Google+. It is important to know where your audience is and how to reach them.

Again, this was another highly informative presentation by someone who has broke the code on get a message out. I am glad I attended. Shame there was not a recording of the presentation.