The Georgetown Commons

    The Georgetown University Commons presents a variety of online tools for discussion, collaboration, and reflection, including blogs, wikis, and ePortfolios. Members of the Commons team work with faculty and students to develop ways to integrate these tools into teaching and learning contexts.

    Using the Commons for Teaching and Learning

    Commons Tools

    The Georgetown University Commons site offers tools to facilitate a range of teaching and learning scenarios, such as:

    • allowing students to create ePortfolios to reflect on their learning at Georgetown and represent their intellectual accomplishments to a public audience
    • giving students a virtual exhibition space to present research
    • encouraging collaborative drafting on a class wiki
    • presenting data through visualizations
    • and many more.

    Teaching Commons

    The Teaching Commons, a part of the Commons, is specifically dedicated to guiding instructors to effective practices in teaching. The Teaching Commons brings together a richly exemplified teaching handbook, stories of teaching “experiments” at Georgetown, and curated resources for instructors.

    Case Study 1

    Astrid Weigert: Developing Academic Writing Skills

    Professor Astrid Weigert (German) has incorporated blogs and wikis into several of her courses. For example, she found that a blog for her Gateway writing course on Witches not only resulted in a "closer-knit classroom community" but also improved her students' academic writing. In this video, she describes the evolution of an assignment on "Heimat" from paper to blog form.

    Case Study 2

    Kim Bullock: Portfolio-Blogs as Professional Development Tools

    Physician Kim Bullock, director of the Department of Family Medicine's fellowship programs in community center director development and primary care health policy, is exploring how e-portfolios impact the learning experience of the fellows in these year-long programs.

    Faced with the difficulty of giving fellows enough constructive criticism during the short-term fellowship, Bullock found that e-portfolios allowed fellows to chart their progress and receive evaluation throughout the year, as well as to capture and share their work with others.

    Read more about Kim Bullock's portfolio-blog project here.

    How Georgetown Is Using Social Technology

    This article from Georgetown Alumni Online highlights uses of social technology in Georgetown classes. It features stories of faculty using blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and other online collaborative environments in their courses.