|“||Writing in a journal reminds you of your goals, and of your learning in life. It offers a place where you can hold a deliberate, thoughtful conversation with yourself.||”|
What is a learning journal?
A learning journal is a place where you can note down your thoughts, ideas and reflections as you work through the course. This can help you assess your learning progress and consolidate new insights, both for your own use and potentially for collaborating with others. You can also use your learning journal to write down your responses to various learning activities and challenges.
There are many different ways to create a learning journal – your choice will depend on your personal preferences.
Private learning journal
For responses and thoughts that you wish to keep private, options for your learning journal include:
- word processing software (such as Libre Office, Open Office, Google docs, or Word)
- paper notebook
- sketch pad
- presentation software
Learning journal blog
If you wish to share your ideas with others, and potentially receive their comments on them, a ‘blog’ (= web log) is an ideal platform for a learning journal. A blog is a website which enables individuals, groups, or organisations to easily publish content online. You may wish to look at this resource for a general introduction to blogging.
There are a several activities in the Critical media literacies and associated digital skills micro-course which encourage you to make entries in a learning journal blog. If you use a blog, the OERu technology platform will fetch links to your blog posts for inclusion in the course feed so you can connect with your learning peers. You will also control and retain access to the content you produce long after the course has finished.
Some OERu courses may require blog posts for assessment purposes, but this will be clearly identified in the respective learning challenges or assignment activities.
How do I set up a learning journal blog?
If you are new to digital technology, setting up your first blog can be daunting, however consult the instructions and your time investment will be rewarded.
There are three steps to setting up your learning journal blog:
- Create your personal learning blog site (or use an existing blog)
- Assign your learning blog url to the OERu courses you have registered for. (This is needed if you want your posts to appear in the course feed.)
- Add the course code (LiDA104) as a label or tag to individual blog posts. (This is needed if you want your posts to appear in the course feed.)
Which blog software should I use?
You can use any blog which has the capabilities to tag or label posts and generate a blog feed. Most OERu learners use WordPress or Blogger. If you would like to use an existing blog you have, we will harvest posts which are tagged or labelled using the course tag (LiDA104). However, you may prefer to set up a new dedicated learning journal blog for your OERu studies.
A blog can be open (visible to the world which is recommended for OERu courses) or semi-private (shareable with designated people, for example your assessor). There may be times when you don’t want your journal entry posts to be made public and in those cases we recommend that you set your blog entry to semi-private. Heres how you control the visibility in WordPress and Blogger (look halfway down the page.)
Steps to set up your learning journal blog
|Create a blog account|
|Configure your blog||Customise preferences (including settings for comments) and personalise the layout of your blog:|
|Assign your blog url to your course account||If you would like us to fetch links to your blog posts for inclusion in the course feed you will need to assign the url of your blog feed to your course account. We have a handy blog feed finder service to help you with this task.
|Tag your individual blog posts with the course code: LiDA104||The OERu blog feed scanner searches assigned blog websites for posts which are tagged or labeled with the relevant OERu course code. You need to add the course code as a “tag” or “label” so that the scanner can publish your post in the relevant course feed. If you don’t add a tag or label to your individual blog post, the scanner will not know which OERu course feed to publish a link to your post.
It’s very easy to add a tag or label to your blog post:
If you forget to add the course code to your blog post, you can go back and edit the original post to add the tag or label using the OERu course code. Our scanner runs approximately every 20 minutes, so your post may not appear immediately in the course feed.
- OERu support site
- LiDA101 learning challenge to establish a personal learning environment (provides more detailed instructions).
- Search Youtube for “How to” videos for your particular blog software.