What is Diigo?
Diigo is an online bookmarking tool which allows you to archive, highlight and annotate online materials for both your own scholarship or that of your students, and can facilitate collaboration on webtexts created by you or your students.
Diigo’s three buzzwords are annotate, archive, and organize. And when it comes to online research materials, boy do they mean it. You can archive any online materials you’ve found on your Diigo page. Then, highlight materials you’ve archived and add sticky notes to the annotations. These notes and annotations will stay on the page when you revisit and are part of your online archive. You can also bookmark pages, where you have the ability to upload the page and capture a snapshot—giving you a direct picture of what you can find on the webtext you left. You can archive other file formats as well, so you don’t have to worry about losing materials. You can also add tags to your bookmarks, so that they are easy to find. The list feature allows you to share and organize your bookmarks for yourself and others—publish a slideshow or report for others. The search function can also help you find materials you might have archived earlier but don’t remember location. Your data is saved both onsite and off, to protect it from changes or broken links.
Build a personal learning network to share work and facilitate conversation between you and your colleagues. You can keep things private or share publicly what you have bookmarked via tags, widgets, or RSS feeds.
Link up with other users, find other researchers, or create a classroom Diigo repository for all gathered research.
What is Twitter?
Twitter is an online social networking application which functions as a micro-blogger. Twitter subscribers send “tweets” (short, 140 character messages) to their “followers” (individuals subscribing to their networks).
Tweeting can be used by students outside or inside of the class to ask questions, post observations, and interact with both instructors and students. The short messages are perfect for quick snapshots of activity and allow the entire class to interact with material both inside and outside the academy as they go about their daily life.
What is NING?
Much like Facebook, NING is a social networking site that enables you to design your own page, post photos, links, videos, blog, and comment on other people’s pages. Unlike Facebook, however, NING allows you to create your own social networks that are completely secured from external users. What does this mean? It means that we can create sites for English 111 and 112 at Miami University that can be used and viewed ONLY by our students.
Each student will be responsible for appropriately maintaining his/her NING page, as well as a blog which functions as a digital journal. The cool thing? You’ll be able to view pages and blogs by, as well as communicate with, students in classes other than your own, if they belong to your NING page! This enables us to create a community of writers and critical thinkers that extends beyond a singular classroom.
Besides blogs and pages, NING has the capability to post links and videos. Feel free to access episodes of television shows, films, and other online resources, making them available to others.
Each student can be responsible for maintaining a NING page. They can design their own page “theme,” add (appropriate!) photos, and introduce themselves using the textbox next to their photos. You can also have them blog frequently, post their own items, and read and respond to other students’ blogs. You can also create assignments in/with NING.
You can also send e-mails via NING to class members as well as other NING linked instructors, and you can comment on people’s walls (exactly like Facebook).
NING also has a discussion forum where you will be able to read a thread of posts by everyone within the network. The forums can also be used to post questions and/or ideas/feelers about certain assignments and or papers. NING’s forum may be a great research tool for you.
NING has administrator capabilities which allow the instructor to set the limits of NING interaction for the course. There are several different apps and uses.