Tony Karrer's eLearning Blog on e-Learning Trends eLearning 2.0 Personal Learning Informal Learning eLearning Design Authoring Tools Rapid e-Learning Tools Blended e-Learning e-Learning Tools Learning Management Systems (LMS) e-Learning ROI and Metrics

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Twitter as Personal Learning and Work Tool

For people new to the concepts of social media and reviewing their tool set, is Twitter a good choice as a tool?

Introduction to Twitter for Learning

Here are some good initial starting points that discuss Twitter for Learning -

Twitter is Not for People New to Social Learning

Considering what I saw when I looked at following Twitter Learning Professionals - quickly I decided Twitter Mass Follow - Never Mind. My concern about twitter is that it will be too random for most people, especially those who have not established any relationships / understanding of the people they are following. Thus, my opinion is: Twitter is not a tool for people who are new to social media and the use of social media for personal learning and work.

There is one exception to this. If you are going to a conference or evening event where attendees will be using Twitter in a group fashion, then that's likely a good opportunity to try out the tool.

Twitter is Okay, But Not Primary

For a person who is already more into social media and what their experience might be take a quick look at Brett Miller's recent post 10 days of Twitter. I think his explanation of his experience coming onto twitter is pretty realistic, but he's also not new to social media.

There are certainly powerful examples in Twitter Collaboration Stories and Twitter for Learning.

Still, I would put Twitter as a social tool, a serendipity learning tool, a quick hit, general question tool. But it's still down on my list and you have to be careful not to allow it to waste time.
Other Posts in the Series


Anonymous said...

Good points. I think they hold true if you're looking at Twitter for any knowledge or business purpose. I'm just starting to really get my head around who I want to follow and what I personally want to tweet to make it really useful.

Anonymous said...

I think we need to be careful of these statements - "Twitter is not a tool for people who are new to social media and the use of social media for personal learning and work."

Confess that I'm also guilty of it too however we both know that how an individual interacts and uses an online tool for their learning is very personal. While I'm cautious to recommend Twitter as a tool for most new people I have seen newbies achieve incredible learning and connections using Twitter that they wouldn't have achieved through other sources.

What I now say when doing presentation is "my personal learning networks ranks Twitter in the top 5 tools for building your personal learning network. I don't necessarily agree that it is a good starting point but you make the decision yourself. That is why it's personal."

Here is my latest information on getting started with Twitter - the site has been very popular. I also wrote a post yesterday about how companies are using twitter for service support that has made me rethink this aspect also.

Anonymous said...

PS forgot to mention if you haven't realised co.mments service is still working even though it still displays the message shutting down on 11 January.

Sanjay said...

I decided to split my Twitter feed. I have a personal Twitter feed which I use for social conversations, putting out info on things I find interesting and a professional feed called @learningcouncil (run a community at I decided to save that feed for items specifically about learning/training/elearning. I'll include some social stuff (for example our community meets for happy hours or when I'm at a conference).

Brightkit makes it easy to do this. Will report back on results