University of Wisconsin–Madison

10.2.15: Twitter/Social Media with Catalina Toma

catalina tomaCatalina Toma from Communication Science shared her research in social media, and strategies and stories of using Twitter in class. Rather than focusing on the specific technology of Twitter, as we did in Shawn Peter’s Active Teaching Lab last spring, we focused more on the challenges of engaging students with social media.

Activity sheet • Notes

Catalina’s Twitter story


  • have students post highlights from the readings
  • private groups on Facebook
  • Students didn’t have to post to their public profile
  • have students develop their professional profile
  • Could be done in multiple social media platforms – maybe start with Google+, since all have access through UW
  • Provide careful structuring for your students for what you want them to do.
  • Consider using a hashtag to organize student tweets.
  • Consider using software (TweetBeam, TwitterFall) to get a live running list of tweets as they come in.
  • This is hard because it is a crossroads between personal and academic space for students.
  • Live in the space yourself before you have your students do it.
  • Participate in the space WITH your students.
  • Social media can be a way to connect your students to experts / authors of papers / the outside world.


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