Had an interesting conversation with a 2nd year student today. We were discussing the use of TodaysMeet and whether it was useful. This student had some interesting points worth considering.

As someone who prefers to take notes on the iPad, this students felt it was, at times, challenging to jump from a note-taking app to TodaysMeet. There were times when parts of the TodaysMeet conversation were being missed as the student flipped back and forward from tweeting to note-taking.. This led to an interesting discussion about trying not to take notes in the ‘traditional’ sense but using TodaysMeet to note down the main points – or working as a group to have one person tweet whilst another takes notes.

At this point, the student made the point that unless there was a way to only view only your own tweets instead of the whole conversation, students would be very reluctant to embrace this new note-taking paradigm.  A very fair point. I certainly wouldn’t want to scroll through 20 PDF pages of conversation to find where my own thoughts and notes were hidden.

So what is the alternative?

One suggestion made was to have all students create a new, professional and bespoke twitter account to be used only for my classes at University. Students could follow each other (and me) but add no one else. That way the tweets would still be self-contained. Once everyone had signed up, the settings could be changed to private. Students could then easily read their own posts or read the whole conversation.

It’s a sensible idea with a couple of slight issues.

  1. If a student already has a Twitter account linked to their University email address, they cannot create another one;
    As I already have a Twitter account linked to the university (@agpate), I would be stuck too.
  2. All students would have to have a username which was relatively easy to find and all students would have to follow all other students.
    Something like “UoGMAPEStudent12345678” would probably do the trick but it’s a bit cumbersome.
  3. I cannot save a Twitter ‘conversation’ as easily as I can on TodaysMeet.
    Well, I can but it really isn’t pretty. There’s tweetdownload.net but it’s ugly as sin.
  4. Students could DM (Direct Message) each other which could reduce the input (and impact) in the main conversation.

On reflection, I think I’m going to stick with TodaysMeet for this term. At the beginning of next term we could switch to Twitter and see how that works out. TodaysMeet and Twitter could then be compared in more depth. Something to consider anyway.

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