Reflection on Topic 4

This has been my favourite #UOSM2008 topic by far, because of the vast variety of issues discussed in each blog. All of our posts resonate with the same standards, and by evaluating our ideas through research we’ve come to a few overall understandings.

I focused on the educational use of social media, with special attention to student codes of conduct and free speech; ideas I had brought to light from the beginning of #UOSM2008 (see Intro, topic 2). Since the post, I was involved in a student focus group for a BMedSci project regarding “Digital Professionalism in Medical Students” (what are the chances?!). Below is a slideshow of some of the quotes from the session.

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At the end we came to an agreement – everyone, especially healthcare professional students, should be careful with what they say online. This was discussed by Sam, but with regard to nurses alone. Initially I purely contended the ethics behind reprimanding/prosecuting students for their social media usage, which led me to the Knight Foundations movement: #freetotweet.

However, reading Hannah’s post made me realise that we have to take responsibility for our actions, and be careful with our so-called power of free speech (an issue also raised by Richard). We discussed social media “policies” that Universities had published to help students, and agreed that everyone should be made more aware of these policies.

I enjoyed reading Richard’s and Ammaar’s posts about the digital divide and data mining. Without proper access to the internet, many cannot benefit from the educational advantages of the internet (see topic 1: Anatomy video), and would not be able to express themselves in the first place! Data mining seems to be a massive breech of privacy, reinforcing how careful we have to be on the web.

The first few topics showed me how and why we can gain from using the internet skillfully. In contrast, this topic has emphasised that there are significant, but poorly understood ethical issues around educational and professional use of the web, and there is a long way to go before we can all use the internet safely.

See my comments: – 1 2 3

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