Profiles of bloggers in training and development

edubloggers

Book Review
Edublogging: a qualitative study of training and development bloggers
Kristina Schneider
Acorda Press, 2009. 160 p.

Here Kristina Schneider takes an academic look at the process bloggers go through when deciding what to blog, when and why they blog, and their relationship with their readers.

Schneider is a performance technologist, merging instructional and systems technology skills with project and operations management abilities.

She’s particularly interested in the field of training and development. Edublogging presents detailed case studies of five people who blog on the subject of training and development. Two blogs are written by a single contributor, two are written by an organized collective, and one is an editor-based blog with invited contributors.

The bloggers she studied include Jeff, an independent consultant based in the US who blogs about informal learning; Jill, a training and development researcher based in the US who blogs about Web based learning; Kate, a learning consultant for an organization based in the UK who blogs about the learner’s perspective on learning; Mark, an independent consultant based in Southeast Asia who blogs about the links between trends in training and knowledge management; and Stuart, an education researcher based in Canada who blogs about what he learns through his research.

Each edublogger writes for his or her own reasons, Schneider says, but, as a group, they share several attributes: they share, they explore, they self-promote, they discuss, they reference, they quantify, and they support one another.

Schneider reminds us that, as a qualitative study based on only five examples, her findings should not be generalized to the larger community of bloggers. Her goal was to generate hypotheses about bloggers that can be tested on much larger samples in a quantitative or mixed-methods study.

As a result of her study she calls for more research in six related areas: Blogger evolution and self-directed learning; gender and social media; reader participation and contribution; qualitative assessment of blog content; responsibility to verify facts; and value judgments about media and copyright.

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