Sunday, March 6, 2011

NCTIES and Twitter: A Conference Evolution

My first time attending NCTIES was great. I was able to gain so many new ideas and tools to utilize with students and teachers. Before I say anything else about my conference experience, I have to tell you a little bit about my conference habits.

First, I am a session hopper. This does not mean that the session I am attending is bad, it is just something I do. There are always multiple sessions I would like to attend, so I try to attend several during each hour. In fact, during this conference there was only one session that I stayed for in its entirety--QR Codes and why they matter to education. I have so many ideas for QR codes and was able to add to those by attending this session. Ok, back to the topic, session hopping. I have done this at conferences for as long as I remember. To further feed my session hopping problem, I have thrown Twitter into the mix!

This was the first conference where I used Twitter actively throughout. Wow! I will never again be without Twitter at a conference. It let me keep up with so much more than I could have ever done before with my session hopping. I was able to "see" what was going on at many different locations at the convention center. Twitter also saved me from a less than exciting session. I was not particularly enjoying one session and with prompting from Twitter I relocated.

I still have a lot to learn about the language of Twitter, but I truly see the added benefits of using Twitter to improve personal learning. I am sure I will have more posts in the days to come about my NCTIES experience, but nothing can surpass the role of Twitter for this conference.


  1. It was my first time attending NCTIES as well and I enjoyed it immensely. I tweeted throughout the event and made it a purpose to get better at multitasking. Like you, I got so much out of others tweets from different sessions. I'm glad you had a great time and I look forward to reading more about your experience.

  2. @kellybrannock on TwitterMarch 6, 2011 at 9:33 PM

    I agree, Jennifer! I'm not a session hopper unless a session turns out to be less than expected. In that case, Twitter can be helpful in finding a 'Plan B' session. I also find that I am more engaged in listening when I'm tweeting. I know this doesn't work for everyone, but for me, tweeting is a lot like taking notes - it helps my focus and memory. I'm more engaged when I'm thinking about what's important to share. The other thing I noticed is that those who can't be there in person benefit from the tweets at the conference. While it's not the same as being there, following the conference tweets is a great way to pick up resources, inspiration, and new folks to follow.