Twitter as a Tool for Teaching and Communicating Microbiology: The #microMOOCSEM Initiative
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AuthorsLópez-Goñi, I; Martínez-Viñas, M.J.; Cid, V.J.; Martín-González, A.; Brown-Jaque, M.; García-Lobo, J.M.; Sánchez, M.; Vilchez, J.I.; Robledo-Mahón, T.; Seder-Colomina, M.; Tapia-Paniagua, S.T.; Hernández-de-Rojas, A. (Alma); Gallego-Parrilla, J.J.; López Díaz, T.M.; Maica i Prieto, S.; Villalobo, E.; Quindós, G.; Balboa, S.; Romalde, J.; Aguilar-Pérez, C.; Tomás, A.; Linares, M.; Gil-Serna, J.; Ferrer-Espada, R.; Camacho, A.I.; Vinúe, L.; García-Lara, J.
Online social networks are increasingly used by the population on a daily basis. They are considered a powerful tool for science communication and their potential as educational tools is emerging. However, their usefulness in academic practice is still a matter of debate. Here, we present the results of our pioneering experience teaching a full Basic Microbiology course via Twitter (#microMOOCSEM), consisting of 28 lessons of 40-45 minutes duration each, at a tweet per minute rate during 10 weeks. Lessons were prepared by 30 different lecturers, covering most basic areas in Microbiology and some monographic topics of general interest (malaria, HIV, tuberculosis, etc.). Data analysis on the impact and acceptance of the course were largely affirmative, promoting a 330% enhancement in the followers and a >350-fold increase of the number of visits per month to the Twitter account of the host institution, the Spanish Society for Microbiology. Almost one third of the course followers were ...
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