fluscenario and twitter

5 Nov

I have been contacted by a small number of students who have concerns about using Twitter for #fluscenario.

Students who have contacted me directly have been made aware that I cannot force them to sign up to Twitter.
I do not have concerns about privacy concerns and monitoring, as all students are provided an email address by the university and all students are expected to use that responsibly as part of their educational contract. Thus, students have an email address they can use for twitter, and you are under no obligation to use anything that identifies you by way of username (I have had emails from students letting me know who they are: thank you). You are emphatically not required to provide medical advice or anything else that would breach GMC guidelines.
Furthermore, our experience last year tells us that students who participated through Twitter gained more from the experience than those using a more private method of communication. This is because the teaching has been designed to be conversational. As such, we have removed all references to conversation on medblogs from this year’s scenarios. We have left open an alternative, which is for students to follow the scenarios and the conversation on twitter, then to email the reflection and learning points by at the end of each week.

To summarise, Twitter is not mandatory. Taking part is.

PS Last year there were concerns that students could be considered to be taking part if they simply retweeted other people, or added “me too”. To partly improve this, and to help students to identify the key learning points, we are asking students to summarise their thinking at the end of each week, then I can summarise the summaries!

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