Applications like Flipboard, Zite, RSS5000, and Taptu aggregate content from personal social media networks and other sources, presenting the information in a snappy magazine-style format complete with headlines, images, column formatting, and multimedia. Users set up sections, like those in a newspaper, and each section provides content from Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, or other social media account or pulls data from an RSS feed or a website. As students contribute their own text, photos, videos, and related links to the network, the emerging content can engage classmates and encourage participation in the conversation. These products change who has control of content and raise new questions about copyright. Although implementation of these products in academic settings remains in the early stages, we can expect similar content-delivery products on smart phones and laptops.
The "7 Things You Should Know About..." series from the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI) provides concise information on emerging learning technologies. Each brief focuses on a single technology and describes what it is, where it is going, and why it matters to teaching and learning. Use these briefs for a no-jargon, quick overview of a topic and share them with time-pressed colleagues.
In addition to the "7 Things You Should Know About…" briefs, you may find other ELI resources useful in addressing teaching, learning, and technology issues at your institution. To learn more, please visit the ELI Resources page.