Northern Regional | Opening Doors…Empowering Students

A great line-up of technology-related workshops made it difficult to choose which workshop to attend. There were a number of sessions about wikis, some about podcasting and moodle. During the Rap session the key question was:

What is the difference between Wikis and Blogs? 

Tatiana Roganova, the TELLIG coordinator, suggested that this question be discussed on our TELLIG listserv.

Here’s  the reply by Elizabeth Hanson-Smith. To learn more, join our listserv.


Hi Tatiana–
Sorry I missed the session–I really was supposed to be there, but had a bum knee and couldn’t walk for 2 days (it’s fine now).

I see the two–blogs and wikis–as very different and having different pedagogical purposes, though both are easily editable and can support all kinds of media nowadays.

Since blogs are created in reverse chronology they are good for journal-keeping or developing an electronic portfolio that demonstrates growth over time. I like them for free writing or for developing a project. The media capabilities are great for PBL. Here’s an example from Rita Zeinstejer’s international exchange. She uses PodOmatic, a podcasting blog, to hold student writing, audio and video, and photos:
Blogs become Web 2.0 when you have students make and exchange comments on the blog.

Wikis are great for peer editing of compositions, and for archiving material–either that created by a student, or student groups, or the teacher for a course. It’s basically a quick Web page, but the power comes from the ability to organize material by content (or alpha-sorted) rather than chronologically. Also you can retrieve earlier drafts of a page and communicate with wiki members with email messages. Here’s an example of a plain vanilla archive or resources created over the last three years in an Electronic Village session on video (I could jazz it up with images and embedded video, but it’s not needed for this purpose):
The nice thing is that anyone who joins the space can add to the resources, rather than just tacking on a comment at the end.

Both blogs and wikis have RSS capability so you can see when pages are updated (you can do that with most Webpages now anyway). And both can use tags so they can be searched. But I’m thinking of moving everything in my ed tech blog to a wiki because of the organizational capabilities.

Hope to hear some more from others about what they are doing with these tools.

Here’s a photo of  participants at the Rap Session. Participants at Northern Regional Rap Session 08

 Here’s a list of tech-related workshops at this event.

Technology-related workshops at CATESOL Northern Regional 2008 – PDF

 Technology-related workshops at CATESOL Northern Regional 2008 - JPG


About teacherbranka

teaching ESL in California and working to promote effective technology integration in adult education at a family literacy level
This entry was posted in Regionals. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s