While at ISB one of the things that kept troubling me was class participation, popularly known as CP. While I did speak up occasionally, more often than not I would end up around average in CP evaluation. This was true for all the courses that had CP.
It might have been completely different had something been as popular back then as it is today. Twitter.
Currently there is a course being held at ISB on social media, analytics and online marketing (@tarun_davda is my class mate from the class of 2009). And through out the class today discussions were held on Twitter using the #isbsm hashtag. While the number of participants might appear less, it is the idea that I find fascinating. In a typical class at ISB the awesome diversity of the batch anyway contributes to great discussion. But bring that discussion to Twitter and you have real time learning through comments from people in the industry and other experts. Further enriching the discussion.
While that might not have happened today, it is surely going to happen in the future. Great way to involve social media in the learning process in real time.
The other important point this highlights is the power of Twitter as a information network. You can easily participate in useful discussions on the site with people who are not on your social graph. If Twitter could devise a way to cut out on the spam and improve the experience of browsing through tweets with specific hashtags (such as better nesting, hashtag hierarchies), I can see this system replacing discussion forums in the future. (This could be the topic for a separate blog post.)
How else can social media be used to infuse real-time value to education?