Blog task 4: The three R’s: Resources, Research and Reflection

creative commons licensed ( BY-NC-SA ) flickr photo shared by gcouros

Since the dust has settled on the scholarly book review I have thought of little else beyond my digital essay but don’t think for a moment that that means my thinking, reading and engaging have narrowed – far from it.

My topic for the digital essay is “Curation as a tool for teaching and learning”. Starting with the resources in the module I have been gradually extending my horizons and have been rewarded with a wealth of resources. What started as something I thought a neat and contained topic, well suited to the 1800 words or so we are allowed, has broadened and deepened and I’m starting to be concerned about giving all the important stuff the attention it deserves. Just today I learned about metaliteracy, a term that I don’t think has been used in the modules (but I’m happy to stand corrected on that if I’m wrong).

Accessing information can still have its challenges. I had an interesting time getting to that particular article – it’s a nice example of the research process I’ve been following.

Last week I set up a Google Scholar alert for my topic. Yesterday an alert email came through with this link Teaching metaliteracy: a new paradigm in action.  It looked really interesting and relevant but there wasn’t any access to the full text there (and the fact it was labelled “EarlyCite” made me wonder if it was in fact published and available). Next I searched the article title and authors through Primo but didn’t have any luck. I then successfully searched for the journal title in Primo and was able, through the journal’s site, to navigate to a page where I could access the article in a PDF. As suspected this article is not officially published yet and the PDF lacks tables, illustrations and page numbers.

This same process has worked in other cases too and I’ve felt quite proud of myself when I’ve been successful in tracking down articles that at first try weren’t showing up. I guess the databases aren’t always up-to-date or complete.

I have been saving what I find to Evernote and highlighting and making notes for each article or site as I go. I was very excited to discover recently that the Table of Contents function is now available in Evernote for PC. My next step will be to start making sense of all the information I have by using table of contents notes to organise the information into sections and make linking annotations. The TOC function isn’t perfect – the links appear in the order they appear in the notebook and there’s no easy way to sort them differently – but the good thing is you can make them whenever you like, add text or delete links and rearrange everything manually.

As I’ve been researching and reading I’ve identified more and more links between my topic and other modules of Concepts and Practices for a Digital Age. In fact, as I flick back through the modules I’m viewing them differently to first time around. In particular topics like digital literacy; connected learning; information behaviour; thinking in networks; connectivism; open, social and participatory media; organising information, and narrative technology all demand another think when considered in relation to curation.

Some of the more interesting aspects of curation I’ve been reading about include: curation as a means of nurturing inclusiveness in online communities; teacher professional development through curation; how content curation is different to content marketing; the role of curation in developing digital literacy capacity, and teacher curated textbooks.

It’s a fascinating topic. I’m looking forward to learning even more over the next two weeks and I hope I can do it justice.


Witek, D. and Grettano, T. (2014) “Teaching metaliteracy: a new paradigm in action”, Reference Services Review, Vol. 42 Iss: 2