ENTERING THE BLOGOSPHERE: FACULTY PERSPECTIVES ON STUDENT BLOGGING IN THE FIELD
Faculty, while advising students throughout the blogging assignment, significantly improved their own abilities in understanding and utilizing technical applications (Blogger, SketchBook, electronic geologic map apps, etc.). Additionally, faculty gained an increased understanding of student perspectives of the field experience as well as further insight on the strengths and weaknesses of student writing. Mitigation of misconceptions by college administration and non-geology colleagues regarding the advantages and realities of field study can assist in obtaining financial support for field experiences. Student blogging provides an accessible record of student learning in the field and allows for real-time connection to those following the blog online.
Several challenges of blogging in the field setting became evident upon application (internet connection issues, lengthy field days delaying posting to blog, technical and field experience levels, etc.), but addressing and adjusting for these challenges prior to future implementation of the blogging project will potentially improve success for both faculty and students.