Monday, May 23, 2011


Session 4

¨A weblog, or simply a blog, is basically a journal that is available on the web. The activity of updating a blog is “blogging” and someone who keeps a blog is a “blogger”. Blogs are typically updated daily using software that allows people with little or no technical background to update and maintain the blog.  Postings on a blog are mostly arranged in chronological order with the most recent additions
featured most prominently.¨
In simple terms, a blog is a website, where you write material on an ongoing basis. New 
items show up at the top, so your visitors can read what's new. Then they may or may not comment on it, or link to it or email you.
Blogs in education:
There is no limit for the use of blogs for instructional and academic purposes:
Instructors can use blogs for:
• Content-related blogs as a professional practice 
• Networking and personal knowledge sharing 
• Instructional tips for students 
• Course announcements and readings 
• Annotated links 
• Knowledge management 
And the pptions for students are ilimited: 
• Reflective or writing journals 
• Knowledge management 
• Assignment submission and review 
• Dialogue for group work 
• E-portfolios 
• Share course-related resources
Features of a Blog-Based Class 
There are several options for designing and choosing a blogging service.  The facilitator, in this case, must have clear what is the purpose and also what is required from the blog. The university of Montclair, explains the following as a list of features which could make a successful blog-based class: 
• It must be possible for a teacher to create as many “class blogs” as deemed 
necessary to organize class materials. For example, it must be possible for a 
teacher to create a blog for class notes and another for posting group feedback. 
• The class blogs must be viewable by all students. Furthermore, only the teacher should have administrative privileges to modify these blogs. 
• All students must have their own individual blog for posting assignments. Only two people, the teacher and the student, can view the student’s individual blog. 
Students can edit their own writing and the teacher can add comments to the 
student’s submissions. However, students cannot edit the teacher’s comments. 
• For the sake of organization, it must be simple for the teacher to change between students’ blogs. 
• The blogging service must provide server space on the Internet to store class and student blogs. 
• The blogging service must be free. 

   Blog titles and URLs shall communicate the purpose of the blog. For example, a blog of class notes should be titled “class notes. 
• Creation of class blogs should be done before the first class and assigned relevant blog can be kept solely for giving group feedback to the class. In this way students can easily find pertinent information. Other possible class blogs are student assignment instructions, vocabulary, and answers to past assignments. 
• By creating separate class blogs, information can be efficiently organized. For
example, one class blog can be solely for keeping lecture-based material.

• The teacher-created class blogs can be used as an example when introducing the concept of blogs to the students.
• The creation of all the student blogs can be done on the first day of class. • After introducing the class and the class blogs, give students a non-blog related activity and have them come up to the teacher computer one at a time to create their student blog.

As you can see, blogging is useful at different fields, personal, academic and bussiness.  It makes you feel closer to people elsewhere, exchange ideas, build knowledge and also learn from other cultures.  Our main concern in this subject is how Blogs can be used in Teaching English as a Foreign Language at different levels.  Teachers can be use blogs for desigining relevant projects for the class, for posting general and specific information about the course, organizing and assigning activities, publishing the course syllabus and the evaluation plan in a specific number of pages, normally Blogger provides you with the possibility of using up to 10 pages.

In case you do not know how to start blogging please feel free to click and follow the tutorial.  Hope you have fun and use it for academic and personal purposes.  Enjoy it!