Top Learning and Teaching Tools: Part 1
In September 2013, the Centre for Learning & Performance Technologies released a list of the Top 100 Tools for Learning. The list is the result of a survey of more than 500 learning professionals in 48 countries. You can click on each item in the list to see comments from the survey participants and how they use the tool in teaching and learning. Today, I thought I’d share with you how I use the top 5 tools both professionally and personally.
- Twitter: The NTC has a Twitter account (@nnlmntc) that we use to send out news about our classes, changes to PubMed, TOXNET, and other NLM databases, share teaching or presentation tips and tricks, and ask questions of our followers. We follow health sciences libraries, health care agencies, government agencies, and teaching or training organizations to learn about new developments and what they’re sharing. Twitter can be a great way to learn about new resources or generate ideas. I also use Twitter personally. I find great information and conversation from following other librarians and non-librarians. I find it’s a great way to keep up with topics that interest me. There’s even a hashtag for medical librarians – #medlibs.
- Google Drive/Docs: The NTC does not use Google Docs formally, as we have other shared, collaborative spaces. However, we have heard from participants in our classes that have used it in their teaching. You can create a form or survey to have students respond to during a class or as an evaluation at the end of the class. You can also use it as a collaborative space for students to share ideas or questions.
- YouTube: While most folks have enjoyed watching a silly or amazing video on YouTube, how many of us have used it in teaching or learning? I frequently use YouTube both in my work and at home to figure out how to do things either with technology or around the house. The NTC has a YouTube channel where we aggregate the various tutorials we have created for our classes so they can be viewed at any time. We know many users prefer to learn from a video, so we plan to expand the video offerings here. What about you? Do you post videos on how to accomplish common tasks at your library, or videos to answer FAQs? Do you have a video tour of your library?
- Google Search: This one’s really evident, right? We know it’s not the be-all and end-all of searching, but tor everything from “who was that guy in that movie?” to “What’s the weather in Chicago?” Google search can come in handy. But what about as a teaching or learning tool? Some librarians in our classes have mentioned that they like to have students compare results in Google to search results in more specialized databases to see what the advantages or disadvantages of each might be. For your own learning, you can also set up a search alert for topics you’re interested in.
- PowerPoint: The NTC regularly uses PowerPoint to create presentations for our classes. We collaborate with NLM regularly and this is an easy-to-use tool that both organizations have access to. It’s a simple way to share images with an audience, and it can be used to create some interactive elements as well.
I invite you also to let us know on Facebook or Twitter (@nnlmntc) how you use these tools so we can learn from you as well. I’ll return next week with some additional tools and how we use them.