Pedagogical Blogging: Implementation in a Tertiary-level Professional Communication Course

by Brad Blackstone
Centre for English Language Communication
National University of Singapore

This paper presents a pedagogical blogging process that was implemented in a tertiary-level professional communication course. It describes blogging and its key components, provides a rationale for pedagogical blogging, and summarizes the course blogging activities and two novel elements, the blogging buddy and the blogging group. It also provides a description of how student blogging was evaluated, discusses student impressions of the blogging activity and provides links to student blogs.

View full paper (PDF)

9 thoughts on “Pedagogical Blogging: Implementation in a Tertiary-level Professional Communication Course

  1. Excellent report, Brad. Thoroughly impressed with what you were able to accomplish with your students! I read some of their blogs and it was obvious how enthusiastic they were about this assignment :-)

  2. Thanks, Antares, for reading this report and making a comment. I’m glad you had a chance to check out the students’ blogs as well. That’s exactly where the real magic of pedagogical blogging can be found, in student enthusiasm for the process.

  3. Thank you for this article, this is great and very informative. I have learned something new now.

  4. Great! Thanks, Brad. Your article has inspired me to evaluate and improve my e-teaching. I am thinking about further discussion on practical views of web 2 in ELT when you visit our campus this week. What do you think?
    See you in Indonesia!

  5. In Richardson’s (2009) words, “A weblog is an easily created, easily updatable website that allows an author (or authors) to publish instantly to the Internet from any Internet connection.” (Richardson: 2009, P-17)
    A blog is an online, semi-public journal that displays serial entries with date and time stamps. It may be embedded in a facebook or MySpace page, and may function as an individual’s homepage. Most blogs include a comments feature that allows visitors to post responses. (Reinhardt & Thorne: 2007, P-12)
    NELTA is the acronym of Nepal English Language Teachers’ Association, the only NGO in Nepal working with an aim to improve the teaching and learning of English language across the country. It was established in 1992 as a non-government, non-political, non-profit making professional association with the aims of improving ELT situation in Nepal.
    Today NELTA has developed into a big umbrella that can accommodate one and all English language teachers from tertiary to university levels. The teacher association has been operating more than 30 branches from Mechi to Mahakali throughout the country. It has 1700 life members and several hundred general members including teachers from pre-primary level to university level, ELT personnel working in the Ministry of Education and Sports, teacher trainers/educators and the professionals associated with the ELT and educational institutions.
    Major activities that NELTA does for professional development of ELT in Nepal are:
    1. Annual Publication of Journal and Newsletter
    2. Short term Teacher Training Programs
    3. Workshops/Seminar/Symposium
    4. Annual International Conferences
    5. Regional/Mini Conferences
    6. Establishment of ELT Resource centres at its branches
    7. Human Resource Development
    8. Material Dissemination Seminars
    9. One Day Workshops
    10. ELT Survey
    11. Networking
    12. Blogging (NeltaChoutari)
    Among different professional development activities of Nepal English Language Teachers Association (NELTA), blogging is one of them. NELTA has a professional blog namely NeltaChoutari.
    In the blog , here the CHOUTARI is a Nepali word which means the place where people sit and discuss together in a community on certain issues of their interests. Similarly, NELTA CHOUTARI is an online place where ELT professionals can discuss and share their views and perspectives, knowledge and experience of English language and its teaching in Nepal.
    NeltaChoutari is a monthly webzine as well as a wonderful professional blog that brings us ample resources of diverse tastes not only from Nepal but from different parts of the world.

    When NeltaChoutari appeared on the web for the first time in January 2009, it was like a kind of discussion blog. The team which first initiated the blog consisted of three members. They were Ghanshyam Sharma, Prem Phyak and Balkrishna Sharma. They were the founder editors of the webzine. Later, the editorial team was joined by other three members of NELTA namely Sajan Kumar Karn, Kamal Poudel and Hem Raj Kafle. The present editorial team consisting 6 members of NELTA voluntarily edits and contributes the blog monthly.
    Now it has turned as a professional forum and excellent platform to learn and help others learn. Till March, 2011, there are 27 issues of NeltaChoutari on the web in different areas.
    The blog ‘NeltaChoutari’ benefits ELT community in Nepal in many ways as it is easily accessible online resource of ELT in Nepal. It not only offers the thematic discussion but it also connects us to the vast amount of ELT resources that are available online. It helps Masters Students in thesis writing in general and especially for the literature review in particular, which is one of the key challenges for the thesis writing for the researchers. It provides abundance number of resources to the teacher trainers for conducting effective ELT trainings. It updates NELTA members and readers of the Choutari with information of different ELT activities recently held in Nepal and outside. The readers can share their knowledge and experience with others through the blog for professional development. The more they share the richer they develop themselves professionally.

  6. It was a great sharing by you, Brad. First of all, I would like to congratulate you for such an innovative idea. Since I am conducting research (for the partial fulfilment of my Masters Degree in English Education in Nepal) on how blogging helps people develop professionaly with special reference to the blog in Nepal,, your research would be a reference for me to accomplish my job.

    Hope to get further support from you to complete my project work.

    Thank You

  7. Thank you for your interest and comments, Praveen. I will be in Nepal in December 2011. Please contact me if you think it is possible for us to meet. I’d be happy to discuss blogging or the use of any other Web platforms with you and your colleagues.

Comments are closed.