This summer, Humanities Commons will honor one of the most time-honored traditions of the season: summer camp.

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How can we foster group activity?

3 replies, 2 voices Last updated by  Charlie Gleek 12 months ago
Viewing 4 posts - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
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  • #14424

    Caitlin Duffy
    Participant
    @caitlinduffy49

    Hello, campers! Happy Friday!

    I hope your networking challenge is going well. Please let me know if you come across any obstacles or if you have any questions/ideas.

    One common trend that I’ve noticed is that campers are running into dead or near-dead groups. The Humanities Commons team has also noticed less activity in some of the public, subject-based groups and has been trying to think about how to encourage more discussion and community.

    Do you have any ideas? Are there any group features that could help foster more discussion? Are there features that the HC team should add to groups in order to make this happen? Are there moves that users can take to make these groups more lively? What have you noticed that seems to work?

    The second mini-challenge (to appear early next week!) has some more thoughts about fostering active group engagement.

    Both myself and the HC team (as well as the other campers, I’m sure) are really interested in reading your thoughts on this topic!

    #14436

    Charlie Gleek
    Participant
    @cgleek

    One thing that I’ve seen work on listservs are regular hangouts (Google works well, so too can Skype I gather) amongst members. Sometimes these can be lightning talks two mins to talk about your research, themed hangouts and discussions, or even panel planning for upcoming cfps and conferences. Another idea the HC folks may want to consider is expanding challenge-based (like Summer Camp) work within groups, rather than merely hoping that conversation will emerge organically. One of the downsides to these approaches is that most of us are already doing these sorts of things in other settings (Twitter, Facebook, listservs, etc.), or that HC discussion groups are just ‘one more’ platform for us to get involved. Given the time pressures we all face at our various career stages, I wonder exactly how many of us can commit to setting aside an hour each week to chat with our colleagues on HC?

    /C

    #14520

    Caitlin Duffy
    Participant
    @caitlinduffy49

    @cgleek Thanks for your thoughtful response!

    I agree, regular hangouts can be really beneficial in creating active groups. The challenge-based work that we’re currently doing through this summer camp also seems to work well. Since HC groups are created and maintained by users, the HC team doesn’t have too much control over what they do, however, the team could provide more resources and ideas to group leaders.

    I also agree that users need to be mindful about the time and labor they can realistically spend on HC (as well as their other digital networking platforms). This should make users’ lives easier, not more stressful.

    #14521

    Charlie Gleek
    Participant
    @cgleek

    Thanks, Caitlin. I was just having a similar conversation with an international organization that I consult for (we were talking about online professional development/teacher training) One of the ideas we were kicking around was crafting best practices/guidelines for folks to consider when the run or participate in groups. These could include the idea of hangouts, even ones based on time zone/geography to make the meeting times more accessible to members. Regardless of whether this occurs in the platform, via video, or through social networks (I don’t do Facebook, but Twitter is home to, for example, educational-themed chats), the thinking could be to empower groups to consider these options as a way of fostering engagement in their particular fields.

    /C

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