Welcome to the Twitter Workshops!

May 16, 2010 Leave a comment

Welcome to the web site for two half-day workshops on Twitter at Computers and Writing 2010: “Twitter from the Ground Up” and “Twitter to Infinity and Beyond.” The workshops will be hosted by Bill Wolff (Rowan University), Rachael Sullivan (soon to be at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee), Julie Meloni (soon to be at the University of Victoria), and Karl Stolley (Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago). The abstracts as submitted are below. See the navigation for schedules for each of the workshops. The sidebar contains information we hope workshop attendees (and others who find this site) will find useful as they consider incorporating Twitter into their courses, research, and social media life. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact any of us.

Workshop 1: Twitter from the Ground Up
Stewart Center 214A, 9:00 – 12:00 noon
This workshop is for people who are interested in creating Twitter assignments for the graduate and/or undergraduate classroom. Workshop participants will learn about Twitter grammars, about various kinds of tweets, and about third-party applications that enhance Twitter’s functionality.

To do this, participants will break into small groups to learn how to use an application and then will complete a short presentation to the larger group on the application. Participants will then be introduced to and discuss several Twitter assignments that have already been used in a classroom setting. We will discuss what makes for an effective assignment, as well as how to introduce Twitter to students, how to assess student work, and many of the side benefits of using Twitter in the classroom. These benefits range from continuing in-class conversations outside of the classroom to increased access to students to the possibility of the authors students are reading engaging in the discussion.

Participants will come away from the workshop with their own Twitter assignment. They will also be encouraged to tweet the conference using the #cw2010 hashtag.

Workshop 2: Twitter to Infinity and Beyond
Stewart Center 214A, 1:00 – 4:00pm
This workshop introduces hands-on work with the Twitter API. Regardless of skill level, participants will learn to develop unique mashups, visualizations, and other novel Twitter applications. Focus will be on plugins for existing systems (Drupal, WordPress) participants already use, as well as the steps to building fully customized Twitter applications.

This workshop is aimed at people who are looking to utilize RSS feeds and the Twitter API to develop their own unique mashups, visualizations, and other novel Twitter applications. Participants will learn about the basics of Twitter feeds, and how Twitter can do much of the work of selecting and organizing Tweets before they are pulled into a custom application. To do this, participants will also learn how to access the API, and a few common languages for doing so (primarily JavaScript and PHP). Using well-commented, basic examples, even people new to writing code will be supported to explore Twitter API access (additional supporting materials will also be made available to participants for use beyond the workshop). The workshop will then break into groups of people who use Drupal, WordPress, MediaWiki, or other Web/CMS software, and explore plugins that are available for accessing the Twitter API on their system of choice.