Blogs are discussion or informational sites published on the web, consisting of entries (posts) typically displayed in reverse chronological order. There are online blogging platforms such as Wordpress and Blogger which are free to use.
Many blogs provide commentary on a particular subject and others function as more personal online diaries. A typical blog combines text, images, and links to other blogs, web pages, and other media related to its topic. The ability for readers to leave comments in an interactive format is an important contribution to the popularity of many blogs.
Blogs - Information for students
Blogs can be an excellent source of information from brands, businesses and employers which may help enhance your understanding of your course.
Creating a blog can also be an interesting project for you to undertake whilst at university, documenting your experiences, for example your time spent during placement or on an Erasmus exchange.
It is important to consider that as a student of RGU what you post in your blog could have positive or negative connotations with the university. Bloggers must not post to the detriment of RGU’s reputation. Academic regulations apply to students.
Similar to other social networking sites you should remember that if you choose to blog this will be public and on the web forever. As a general rule only post what you would be happy for anyone to see online. You may find that when you apply for a job your employer may check your social networking sites and you wouldn’t want anything to be visible which could negatively impact on your chances of a job or further study.
The Library Blog provides the additional information that current students find useful
The RGU Student Blog is a blog written by students for prospective students thinking of coming to RGU
Blogs - Information for staff
Blogs are a great way establish a voice of authority around a particular subject and an opportunity to enhance both personal reputation and that of the university.
If you are thinking of starting a blog it is a good idea to think why you want to create one. It is very easy to start a blog and then find as time progresses you have run out of ideas on what to write about. If this happens any following you have built up through your blog will start to lose interest. So the best thing to do is plan what kind of subjects you want to blog about and think of who it is aimed at. Will your blog be aimed at like-minded professionals or a learning resource for students? Your blog should not compete with the RGU main website and where possible we ask that you link back to the RGU website when applicable.
It is important to consider who will write the blog and how often? Will it just be one person or will there be a team of bloggers contributing? What will be the tone of voice of the blog, will it be professional or casual? If you do have a team of bloggers think about what each of them can bring to the blog that is different.
As with other social networking platforms you may wish to plan your content in advance. Blogging platforms have the ability for you to schedule posts in advance meaning you can write multiple posts and schedule them. This can help you manage your time. Remember to post regularly so that you interact with your audience.
Think about your audience, this is important in order to get your blog posts read and engaged with. What will your audience find interesting? This is not necessarily always what you first think.
Blogs - Hints and tips for posting
- Promote your blog. Once you have written a post you may want to think about how you can get more people to read it. Anyone who signs up to follow your blog (subscribe) will automatically be emailed every time you post. Why not think about promoting your post on other social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter?
- If you are creating a blog as a team think about who will have overall authority of the blog. Someone needs to monitor the feedback and comments you receive and respond to them. In addition it is a good idea to have one person to act as editor to proof read all blog posts.
- Don’t define the length of your blog. Blog posts can vary, sometimes you may only have a couple of paragraphs to write, other times it may be longer. Don’t think you need to have a certain amount of words in place in order to publish a post. People are less likely to read a post that is thousands of words long. If you want to write a longer post think about how you can break text up with the use of images or sub-headings.
- Don’t feel that you always need to write, try mixing your posts up. You may want to have a photographic entry with some subtitles, or perhaps you want to have a go doing a video entry one time.
- For more tips have look at the following websites:
- Get inspiration and learn from other blogs. See what other blogs are out there that are similar to what you plan to blog about. What works for them? What kind of posts do people seem to interact with the most?
Blogs - Glossary of terms
What or who will govern your blogging activity?
- Tags – you can tag each of your blog posts with different keywords. This is how some people can find your blog. For example if you are writing a blog post about cooking you may wish to use tags like cooking or cuisine. Make sure you put some thought into your tags, keep them relevant and think of them as topics or categories.
- Blogger – a person who writes blog posts
- Vlog – a blog which contains video content
- Subscribe – this function allows people who have read your blog to subscribe to all your future posts.