This paper examines the use of digital communication tools such as blogging to enhance student understanding of social theory. The author currently teaches a pilot social problems course specific to the local community, in which students engage with and observe their local community and then reflect on their experiences through the use of blogging. Combining experiential learning with the use of blogging allows students to incorporate social theories learned in the classroom in their own real life experiences, and share their thoughts with other students online. Blogging reconciles some difficulties in teaching about social theory and social problems which can include student reluctancy to participate in conversations on controversial issues, anxiety about articulating ideas on the spot, and inability to connect with abstract social theory. Using Bloom’s Taxonomy of learning objectives, an integrative model is proposed offering ideas on incorporating technology to meet these objectives. Technology has significantly changed the way knowledge is produced and the way students learn; an integrative teaching model responds to these changes.
|Keywords:||Blogging, Social Theory, Experiential Learning, Community, Sociology, Collaboration, Reflection, Teaching, Higher Education, Technology|
Graduate Instructor of Sociology, Sociology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA