I’m a big fan of hashtags on Twitter.
A judicious tag:
- can be a useful way to highlight key content in a linked story
- can facilitate searches across multiple tweets, including those of people you do not regularly follow
- are integral to the use of Storify to aggregate and capture tweets on a particular theme, such as commentary on a conference (and I know that’s a contentious habit in its own right)
Care needs to be employed, however, in the choice of hashtag. This issue was brought into sharp relief in April 2013 with the death of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. The hashtag #nowthatchersdead using only lower case letters was misconstrued by fans of songstress Cher as an indication that their idol had died – see story here. (There was another unfortunate misunderstanding regarding a tag used to advertise the launch of a new album by Britain’s Got Talent winner Susan Boyle, but I’m not going to unpack that one here.)
For these reasons I like to employ appropriate capitalisation within hashtags; it doesn’t add to the overall length of the tweet, but reduces the likelihood that the meaning will be mistaken.
Chris is @cjrw on Twitter.
The second phase of my November tour has taken me to Naples, for the UNESCO Chair in Bioethics 9th World Conference on Bioethics, Medical Ethics and Health Law. I hope to find time to reflect more fully on the conference in the next few days.
In the meantime, I’ve provided a link to the slides from my presentation on the work we’ve been doing over the past six years, in which second year Medical Biochemists (and Medics) produce short videos about different aspects of biomedical ethics.
I have mentioned the Headline Bioethics project here previously, including links to a poster I presented at the Leicester Teaching and Learning event (January 2013) and again at the Higher Education Academy STEM conference (April 2013).
A paper giving more details about the task was published last week in the journal Bioscience Education. The abstract states:
An exercise is described in which second year undergraduate bioscientists write a reflective commentary on the ethical implications of a recent biological/biomedical news story of their own choosing. As well as being of more real-world relevance than writing in a traditional essay format, the commentaries also have potential utility in helping the broader community understand the issues raised by the reported innovations. By making the best examples available online, the task therefore has the additional benefit of allowing the students to be genuine producers of resources.
This is not, incidentally, to be confused with the other activity I’ve been doing with a different cohort of second year students in which they produce short films about bioethics (the paper on that subject is forthcoming).
Following on from last week’s post about our Headline Bioethics project, here is a poster about the assignment and repurposing which I presented at the University of Leicester Learning and Teaching conference on January 10th. The poster is shown here, with a pdf version avialable via this link.
Headline Bioethics Commentaries are a new series of student-authored articles reflecting on bioethical aspects of news stories
Over at our sister site BioethicsBytes I’ve started to release a new series of articles under the title Headline Bioethics Commentaries. The first couple are already up, and I’ll be adding some more over the next few days.
I mention this here because I wanted to expand a bit on the pedagogic thinking behind this new strand, but this “show your workings” post is more applicable on Journal of the Left-handed Biochemist than over at the bioethics site proper.
The Headline Bioethics Commentaries start out as assessed pieces in a second year Research Skills module (a core unit, currently taken by about 150 students). I contribute a sizeable slice of bioethics teaching to the module and we needed an assignment to go with this chunk of the course. Right from the outset (in 2009), I wanted to break the “write an essay on…” mould and to ask the students to carry out a task that would have real-world applicability, to produce material that would potentially be useful to other people rather than languishing in a leverarch folder. Continue reading
At the Higher Education Academy STEM Conference in April 2012 I gave a presentation about our Careers After Biological Science project at the University of Leicester. The focus of the talk was the pivotal role played by social media in recruiting speakers for careers talks, archiving various resources associated with those careers, and advertising their existence to a broader audience.
Slides from the talk are available below (or, in the event that they haven’t loaded properly, via this link )