Creatively facilitating reflection and learning using word clouds and social media: Evaluating the usefulness of Twitter

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


The use of social media are becoming increasingly popular in higher education, (Arrigoni and Alvaro et al. 2016). An opportunity to take advantage of this to feedback succinctly arose in a postgraduate course.
Aim and objectives
1. To evaluate the usefulness of an exercise to facilitate learning gain
2. Ascertain what role Twitter played in communicating that learning gain back
A narrative arts based educational method was used to structure this evaluation (Barone and Eisner, (1997). Having first obtained ethical approval; students participated in a focus group. Nine (n=9) students took part and the focus group was facilitated using Evoke cards. Output was thematically analysed using Newell and Burnard’s, (2011), approach.
Two main categories with three themes apiece emerged from the data. These were:
1. The What Learn Exercise, (WLE)
a. Providing scaffolding
b. Contractual obligation?
c. Takes time to mature
2. Use of Twitter
a. Motivating and fun
b. How effective is it really?
c. Have I got time for this?
• Providing scaffolding nurtures reflective skills
• Twitter works best as part of a wider suite of tools
• Twitter, like all tools needs to be used appropriately to work
Arrigoni C. Alvaro R. Vellone E. and Vanzetta M. (2016). Social media and nurse education: An integrative review of the literature. Journal of Mass Communication and Journalism. 6.1.
Barone T. and Eisner E. (1997). Arts based educational research. In M. Jaeger (Ed.), Complementary methods for research in education. 2nd Ed. (pp. 36 116). Washington, DC: American Educational Research Association

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationALTNI Annual Event 2019
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 29 May 2019
EventALTNI Annual Event 2019: learning technology through participation, collaboration, critical perspectives and openness - QUB Peter Froggatt Centre, Belfast, United Kingdom
Duration: 29 May 201929 May 2019


ConferenceALTNI Annual Event 2019
Abbreviated titleALTNI2019
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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