Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Wikis, blogs, and podcasts

What's all this buzz about "Web 2.0"? This catch phrase is already becoming "so yesterday", but the main thing to know is that the next phase of communication tools on the web are now giving educators a chance to take advantage of their teaching potential. For example, this blog you're reading has been set up as a way for me to be able to teach you search tips even though we may never meet each other.

In case you have just come back from a trip to the moon, here are some quick definitions:

WIKI - a website that houses documents that can be shared and edited by those with password access

BLOG - a website that has archived postings that allow for readers to comment on the content

PODCAST - an archived online audio or video broadcast

Subscribing to a blog/podcast's RSS feed allows you to keep up with newly added material. There's also a quick way to subscribe to a blog/podcast in a Firefox browser.

A 2006 article details ways medical educators have been using these collaborative tools:

Boulos, MN, Maramba, I, & Wheeler, S. (2006). Wikis, blogs and podcasts: a new generation of Web-based tools for virtual collaborative clinical practice and education. BMC medical education, 6, 41-.

Stay tuned... I'll be posting links to interesting wikis, blogs, and podcasts relating to medical education. For starters, there is a Medical Education blog created by University of Saskatchewan faculty.

Be sure to check out the UCSF Library's webpage focusing on medical information blogs.


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