“Why do you find Twitter useful as an academic?”

This was the question I asked earlier this morning on Twitter. I was preparing a workshop on twitter for academics and was a little nervous about my content. The basic point of the workshop was to convince participants about the value of using twitter as an academic. The quality and quantity of responses was in itself one of the best arguments I could make for the value of Twitter. The very fact of being able to crowd source broad questions in this way is one of the most striking advantages which stem from engaging regularly with Twitter as an academic.
  • Quick answers to questions on things like .. where do I find this tool or that tool ..  (@rjhogue)
  • We discuss concepts (@Annlytical)
  • There are people who are practicing what I’m researching academically and give me a reality check (@Annlytical)
  • Twitter is brilliant for keeping up with things, networking, finding new ideas, people’s blogs and publications (@BenGuilbaud)
  • meeting new people (in all disciplines), academic support, public engagement, increased visibility, filtered news (@Martin_Eve)
  • What Martin said. I think you already saw this but it’s the Prezi I made for grad students http://bit.ly/uK05VM (@qui_oui)
  • Also, I’ve found Twitter useful for augmenting F2F academic conferences, extending the conversations (@JessieNYC)
  • Twitter is incredibly useful 2 me as an academic 4 many reasons, perhaps chiefly curating the ideal academic dept  (@JessieNYC)
  • Twitter’s unique advantage is that very quickly allows me to spread word of my work to non-academic audiences (@elebelfiore)
  • Keeps me up-to-the-minute with news in my field ie; policy issues, and connects me to conferences/other academics (@DonnaBramwell)
  • connects me to other delegates at conferences, allows me to interact with students in lectures, keeps me uptodate (@timpaa)
  • We trade references for research (@annlytical)
  • great source of information & resources wouldn’t have found otherwise (@nicklebygirl)
  • Twitter makes it possible for me to engage with global community even though I now live in Australia & am #altac (@katrinafee)
  • a PhD can be very isolated so I think twitter is a great way to meet people who can help and give advice (@CET47)
  • you can get very interesting literature advices or other sources you have not noticed yet (@Journey210)
  • Academic uses of twitter – links to blog posts, shared sense of community, shameless self-promotion…! (@KatieMcGettigan)
  • to invite community members to events and lectures on campus (@MegFrauts)
  • twitter is the best way to keep up to date with my subject, find useful resources and connect with others (@LGSMU)
  • Twitter makes it possible to follow conferences globally and get in touch with other academics for quick Q&A sessions (@Greg0rE)
  • joining twitter has helped remove the isolation of study through engagement with #phdchat – synch & asynchronous (@JaneDavis13)
  • twitter allows me to familiarize w current trends & edu tools for my students (tumblr & prezi are examples) (@DisModern)
  • it allows me to keep up to date with advancements in my field. I can also dicuss these things with the experts with ease (@CallumCohen)
  • keeps you in touch w development in your field n wider (@lace675468)

4 responses to ““Why do you find Twitter useful as an academic?””

  1. Twitter also makes a great Short Messaging Service at overseas conferences.

    Twitter saved me a fortune at CSUN12 International Technology and Persons with Disabilities Conference in San Diego earlier this year. DMs and posts were free through wifi, far preferable to eye-watering mobile roaming charges. Simple “where are you?” and “meet at 10 in lobby” type messages allowed me to keep up on formal and informal events, find co-workers for preparation meetings for panels and so on. In this sense, twitter a valuable tool for immediate, co-located and temporary international networks, as well as those more meaningful exchanges in knowledge mentioned above.

    Perhaps more importantly, Twitter could be accessed by the vast majority of conference delegates. EasyChirp.com offers a web-accessible alternative to the Twitter.com website that was used by many blind and VI colleagues and delegates at CSUN. This aspect of twitter’s accessibility is essential to me as an academic wanting to engage with my field and peers. Few other services have this capacity.

  2. (Missed the original Tweet…)
    I find Twitter useful for keeping up-to-date on data releases (e.g. Census Bureau, Pew Research Ctr., etc…) and for ideas on current/relevant content I can use to keep my lectures fresh.

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