The Digital Academic….Could that be me?

Today, I attended The Digital Academic Tools & Tips workshop hosted by Piirus and jobs.ac.uk at the University of Warwick. It was greeeat!

Throughout the conference, I tweeted about it and really enjoyed doing it. I got a real buzz. I even increased my twitter following by about 20% in a span for a few hours as a result of tweeting the event. Mind you, 20% of nothing is nothing haha but you get the idea.

The speakers were Dr Nadine Muller (Lecturer in English Literature and Cultural History at Liverpool John Moores University), Andy Tattersall (Information Specialist at University of Sheffield) and Dr Inger Mewburn (blog owner at The Thesis Whisperer, Director of Research Training at The Australian National university). I learned about what academics are like and how they think social media and its obvious challenges.

Some of them are stylish, some are quiet, some are extroverted, and many have strong opinions about how to make working in academia better. And all of them are brilliant, experts in their fields!! It was a real thrill being there.

Part of my motive was to get an inkling as to whether academics would mind being around me and if I’d mind being around them. I also wanted to know how I might merge my love of social media and blogging with my academic aspirations.

Dr Nadine Muller

Dr Nadine Muller and I at the workshop

My high of the day was taking a selfie with the amazing Dr Nadine Muller (check out her beautiful blog http://nadinemuller.org.uk). She has the coolest tattoo on her chest – and that’s coming from me who is not keen on tattoos as such.

My thoughts from the conference are:

– A personal social media strategy is a must. A LinkedIn profile (for all professionals) and Google Scholar (for researchers) are a must

– Not all channels work for everyone – “try before you buy”. Find your niche

Build a network of supporters and potential collaborators through digital tools- it makes research much more fun!

– There is no academic stereotype in my head anymore. Being at the conference blew that away. Most people I met were real, gutsy and open – no illusions

I made a mental note to look into Mendeley (for research publications) and Haiku deck (for blow-their-minds PowerPoint slides).

Dr Lily Canter has written about the workshop here. It’s much more articulate than I could muster at this point in the evening.
Good times.

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