Blogs and wikis

  • Online methods of publication are growing in popularity. Posting findings regularly to a blog or wiki is a great way to develop the habit of research dissemination, and can provide instant access to a wide audience. Blog hit counters track the impact of student work, while peer review takes the form of well-researched comments from fellow bloggers.

    Some modules at Oxford Brookes already incorporate blogging. For example, second year publishing students blog on the “Publishing in the Digital Age” module. Students peer review each other’s blog posts. The blogs use full Harvard referencing (unusual for this medium, but essential for academic work). Students are assessed on the critical analysis of each other's work in comments, requiring a lot of independent research.

    Students studying Japanese also publish their research outcomes to the web. This publication takes the form of the Japanese Grammar Wiki – a public reference guide to the Japanese language, built by students and refined by those who take a year studying abroad. Work on this wiki also includes peer review and collaboration on the creation of a glossary for beginners.

    There are many opportunities for further incorporating online publication into the curriculum. Drama students for instance will soon get to publish reviews of theatre performances via a blog, encouraging visits to the theatre and active discussion. In the future these blogs could engage people in Oxford with performances in their local area.