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Guest Post: Incorporating Student Blogs into the OM Class at DePaul U.

February 4, 2013

lori cookDr. Lori Cook is Associate Professor of Management at DePaul University’s School of Business. Here Lori describes how she incorporates student blogging into to her Operations Management classes. You can see her syllabus by clicking here.

 

Looking for a new dimension to enhance your OM course?  Consider incorporating a class blogging activity.  Since OM is typically quantitative, students assume assignments will not be focused on writing.  Yet the current business environment demands effective communication, especially in a written manner. For my OM classes, I came to several conclusions regarding the feasibility and benefits of incorporating the blog as a “manageable” written assignment into my classes.  First, the blog would enlighten students to a facet of social media.  Secondly, it could help students actively engage with each other outside the classroom.  Third, the students could discuss the new learning and communicating experience during an interview.  Finally, students could improve their ability to communicate succinctly and professionally.

Since Fall, 2011, I have used a blogging activity in 13 classes (undergrad and MBA), and have read over 800 posts and 3,500 comments.  Based on my experience, the following are some important issues to consider prior to creating a class blog.

1.  Which blogging provider will you use for the blog site?

2.  Will the blog site be private or open to the public?

3.  Is the structure of the site a shared site, or individual student sites?

4.  Does the student or instructor create the content for the site?

5.  Is the nature of the content structured, semi-structured or unstructured?

6.  What are the contribution requirements for post & comments?

7.  What is the schedule and frequency for posts & comments?

8.  Who will approve content for posts & comments?

9.  How will the work, posts & comments be assessed?

10.  How will you assess the overall effectiveness of the blog?

In my experience, if students perceive the blog to be “busy work” they will be disgruntled.  While if you effectively integrate the blog into your course, it can be a rewarding experience for everyone! Check out my current blog site at http://opsmgt.edublogs.org/

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One Comment leave one →
  1. February 7, 2013 12:17 am

    Lori,
    This is a wonderful idea. I know it is time consuming, but the students are providing some excellent readings. You get to keep up with a ton of material that is out there!

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