After reading Tony Bates blog post, “A short history of educational technology”, I feel I have a better understanding now of what an academic blog post should be. Bates followed an academic writing structure, provided evidence and references for his evidence, and also included a component that I now realize has been lacking in my posts – a call to action, as our professor put it. He was very deliberate in including this component; labeling it with the heading “Over to you”. He used this component to ask questions directly to his readers. I found this to be a clear way of including the reader in the post, and encouraging dialogue.
I wasn’t aware prior to a recent classroom lecture, that there is a specific structure to follow when writing an academic blog. I have found it confusing in the past trying to differentiate between academic writing and blogging. I now understand one of the differences to be in the purpose. Writing an academic paper allows one to summarize and synthesize, and is done as an expression of learning. A blog post also allows for this, but it also affords an opportunity for discourse and advancement.
Bates used the “Over to you” segment of his post to provoke dialogue and discussion. How do you encourage reader participation in your blog posts?