The use of journals by students while on placement is a well-accepted strategy for encouraging reflection on practice, with the use of online blogs for this purpose potentially providing additional benefits through shared reflection and peer support. The aim of this study was to explore the effectiveness of an online blogging activity by teacher education students while on professional placement in schools. Data were drawn from focus group interviews, questionnaires and blog postings. Findings reflected substantial diversity in student responses with some highlighting the value of peer engagement and reflection on practice, and others questioning the value of the activity and showing reluctance to provide feedback to peers. Possible reasons emerging for these diverse responses included: nuanced technical issues; lack of peer feedback received by some students; variability in the perceived need for online support due to availability of conventional support networks; and apparent resistance by some students to peer and learning community engagement. Recommendations include careful framing of assessment requirements, awareness of professional placement demands, learning community development strategies and ongoing technical support.
Dalgarno, B., Reupert, A. E., & Bishop, A. (2015). Blogging while on professional placement: explaining the diversity in student attitudes and engagement. Technology, Pedagogy and Education, 24(2), 189 - 209. https://doi.org/10.1080/1475939X.2013.847481