Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Education Research by "through the looking glass"

I have just completed a survey as part of a research project into "education bloggers" being conducted by the Open University - click here to access the research page at the "through the looking glass" site. It got me thinking about the reasons why I blog, so I've reproduced the surbvey questions and my responses here:

What do you blog about?
Almost anything (family, politics, sport, reviews, technology, travel, and motorcycles) I can think of, but my main focus is on Education Technology – especially the use of YouTube for education.

Are you paid to blog?
No – who would pay for my rantings?

What do you do professionally (other than blog)?
I am a Lecturer in Computing.

How long have you been blogging at this site?
Since November 2006.

Do you write in other platforms? (e.g. in a print magazine?)
Not very often – just the odd newspaper item.

Can you remember why you started blogging?
It was part of a Learning Technology class I was teaching – we were discussing the role of blogs in education and I decided to practice what I preach.

What keeps you blogging?
The freedom to say what I want. I post almost every day, and while I often have to really think hard about writing something new – I usually find something in the education blogosphere that I can comment on.

Do you have any idea of the size or character if your audience? How?
About 250 page views per day (via Blogger Analytics).

What’s your attitude to/ relationship with people who comment on your blog?
I do know that a lot of my page views are from family. But I also note that many of my students read my blog. Outside of these two groups I have almost no relationship with viewers.

Do you feel as if you fit into any particular community, network or genre of blogging? (e.g. schools, science, education, museums, technology)
While my blog is a personal one, I do feel part of the education community.

If so, what does that community give you?
I get a lot of ideas for class and on-line teaching from the many education bloggers that share their ideas. I don’t always agree with what they say – but it is a great way to share ideas. Sometimes the Community even comment on my blog!

What do you think are the advantages of blogging? What are its disadvantages/ limitations?
I think a blog like my own where I post about anything does not have any specific advantage. I can see great advantages for the use of blogging for a class (greater communication, collaboration, sharing). A limitation is that it is not for everybody – while students can participate by reading other’s posts, they may be unwilling to post themselves.

Do you tell people you know offline that you’re a blogger? (e.g. your grandmother, your boss)
All the time!

Is there anything else you want to tell me about I haven’t asked?
Nope – good luck with the research.

I will also post my answers on my own blog.

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