Twitter as a Tool for Teaching and Communicating Microbiology: The #microMOOCSEM Initiative

López-Goñi,, Ignacio, Martínez-Viñas, Ma José, Antón, Josefa, Cid, Víctor J., González, Ana Martín, Brown-Jaque, Maryury, García-Lobo, Juan M., Sánchez, Manuel, Vilchez, Juan Ignacio et al (2016) Twitter as a Tool for Teaching and Communicating Microbiology: The #microMOOCSEM Initiative. Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education, 17 (3). pp. 492-494. ISSN 1935-7877

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Social networks are already being exploited for searching, storing, and sharing knowledge, demonstrating that they are an efficient vehicle for social learning. Consequently, they could be implemented as a competent tool for formal learning. Twitter is among the 10 most popular online social networks, integrating a community of over 500 million users around the world. Twitter has already been used in several educational programs and evaluated as a positive teaching experience with an outstanding potential in academic and educational environments (1–6). However, there are scarce examples available in the literature about its use in science teaching and communication. In this work, we present and analyze the application of Twitter to create an online space for communication and learning of basic microbiology. With this aim, a team of professionals in the field has imparted, to our knowledge, the first worldwide open access microbiology course via Twitter. Here we assess the results of our experience of using this social network as a tool for teaching, promoting, and communicating scientific knowledge to a wide audience.

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