- “Educational Uses of Pod and Videocasts” on LeLute’s Weblog
- “Learning in Dense, Distributed, Social Networks” on web technology in small doses
- “Relevance, Permanence, Social Discourse and Filtering . . . or . . . “If I Were a Middle School Teacher” on Ventures
- “Social Network Learnings, Post # I” on Yvette Arts
In previous posts, I’ve disclosed that Diigo is my primary social bookmarking tool and that I use Diigo because of its annotation features. Still, I don’t annotate web pages very often. So far, I’ve mainly used social bookmarking tools to collect information on web-based tools so that I can find information when I need to share it with a student. I use annotation features when I am reading articles (and occasionally blogs) as part of my research or for a course assignment. For me, online annotation is the digital version of margin notes on a paper document
The assignment to annotate a classmate’s post didn’t seem like a very authentic task. Why was I making the annotation? My classmate’s already show up in my Google Reader, so there bookmarking the post felt redundant. I try to comment on classmate’s posts when appropriate (and when time permits), so making digital margin notes also seemed redundant. I haven’t made Diigo a required tool in my online course, but this assignment has got me wondering how I would use Diigo if I were to require it.
I may use Diigo to replace the Ning network that I am using in the course this semester. I’ve used Ning mainly as a location for students to post profiles that provide me with a little background about them as individuals. I’ve also used Ning as a forum to host class discussions. I could accomplish the same goals by requiring students to create a Diigo account and join a Diigo group for the course. I’d also gain the ability to share lists or resources with students. I have a couple of ideas for Diigo assignments.
- Students read and/or view an assigned web-based resource and make annotations guided by a set of reading questions/activities. After making their own annotations, they will look to see their classmates’ annotations before participating in a discussion related to the readings. I wonder how being able to see classmates’ thoughts as they read the same material might impact understanding of each others’ points of view during a class discussion.
- Students create their own resource lists as they work on their projects. For example, a student working on creating an educational podcast may gather links to the examples that inspired her, the tools she used, and the guides and “how-tos” that helped her through the process. The student would then share the resource list with the other class members.
- Students could have a discussion on tagging and evaluate the group’s use of tags.
These are just a few ideas of how I might use Diigo in my class next semester. Any other suggestions?
As I was using Diigo, I noticed that the annotation tools didn’t work consistently. I experienced some problems.
- Diigo would only allow me to save private comments, even though I was trying to make public comments.
- None of my comments would save.
These problems arose inconsistently. I was able to resolve the problem by making sure that the page I was trying to annotate was not loading from the cache. I noticed several of my classmates commented on difficulties using the annotation tools in Diigo. Maybe checking to see if the page is loading fresh or from a cache might help resolve some of their problems as well.