Reflections at the end of #UOSM2008

Through interacting with this module I’ve vastly improved my interdisciplinary skills required for a modern, digital, professional profile. To this end, I’ve found the weekly discussions particularly valuable, exchanging great ideas with others.

At the start of the module, my online presence was mixed. I’ve had a Twitter profile, run a personal website and gown my LinkedIn profile. At the beginning of the module, I updated the profile description and photos to make it consistent with the rest of my online presence. As part of this module, I have made a conscious effort to use Twitter more, and this is really helped me reconnect with this social network, which I hope to continue with in the future.

Due to various organisations and groups I’ve been involved with in the past, my LinkedIn profile is quite mature. My profile is ‘all start’, containing all relevant information. Furthermore, with nearly 150 connections (and growing), I have a valuable asset for my future career as I leave university. Already I’ve seen the fruits of this labour, as I said in my blog post here.

My online presence is separated into two half, professional and personal, with boundaries between them. My professional profile is brought together by the website www.markcole.co.uk. This site lists some of my skills and links to my LinkedIn profile, to provide authenticity as discussed during this module. Take a look at the video below that showcases my professional digital profile, including a demonstration of my QR code business cards.

A YouTube video demonstrating my professional profile (own creation)

In contrast, my personal profile is rather more ad hoc. I mostly use Facebook to connect with those I know personally. However, during this module, I have secured my privacy settings, in order to prevent this conflicting with my professional profile. Also, I have had a personal blogging site (www.markcole.me.uk) for many years. However, it is not very engaging as I haven’t posted for a long time. Therefore, I hope to use the blogging skills developed during the course of this module to post more regularly.

 

Google
My personal blog is the top result on Google, on a public computer (own creation)

 

Finally, I also enjoy photography as a hobby. And for a couple of years, I have put those online on both a Facebook page (which I continue to grow https://www.facebook.com/markcolephoto/) and a website, www.markcolephotography.co.uk. However, during this module, I was inspired to make better use of Instagram, which has been very successful. The nature of this platform has allowed greater interaction with like-minded people.

Throughout this module, I have learnt valuable new digital skills, particularly in how I present information. Condensing a complex topic such as identity into 400 words each week, in layman’s terms, while at the same time writing a dissertation has been somewhat challenging at times. However, through the use of graphics, video and straightforward language, I’ve improved my ability to communicate complex information.

Skills Developed
An infographic summarising the skills I’ve learnt during #UOSM2008 (own creation)

All in all, I look forward to the opportunities that an authentic online profile will bring to my career. The digital skills developed in the module will only become more important in an increasingly digital world.

Word count: 500

Self-test after #UOSM2008

Rating at start of module Comments Rating at end of module Comments
Accessing, managing and evaluating online information

 

4 Over the last few years of Web Science study, I have become competent in collecting and using a range of online information. However, there is still more that I can learn. 5 I have become much better at finding information, for a wide range of sources (now including other blogs and non-academic sources). I can evaluate the sources more thoroughly.
Participating in online communities

 

 

2 In the last few years I’ve not participated in many online communities. In the past, however, I have been part of several online forums. 4 The aspect of this module I have most enjoyed has been the discussions with others. Through these comment threads I have taken in a wide range of perspectives. I have also become better at using sources to justify my opinions.
Building online networks around an area of interest

 

 

2 I have various networks of online contacts. But I’ve not tried to build these around particular topics before. 4 Now I have written and interacted with others on a wide verity of challenging topics, I feel much better prepared to build networks such as these in the future.
Collaborating with others on shared projects

 

 

4 As part of my degree, we’ve undertaken several group projects. Also, when working over the summer I’ve worked with people all around the world using digital technologies. 4 Although this module isn’t entirely a group effort, unlike some which I have taken in the past, the collaboration skills required have been developed through the network of blogs. This is a valuable skill I’ll take forward in my career.
Creating online materials (text, audio, images, video)

 

 

4 I am a fairly competent user of various image, video and audio technologies. However, I am not an expert. 5 I’ve really worked on my use of diagrams and infographics for this module. Furthermore, the use of video is something I’ve attempted in my final post. These allow my content to engage much more than plain text.
Managing your online identity

 

 

3 My digital profile stretches over many different platforms and websites. But I’ve not put a huge amount of effort in being active on all of these or consistent over them. 4 Throughout this module I’ve worked on integrating my digital profile further. Part of this has involved locking down and separating my personal profile from my professional one.
Managing your online privacy and security

 

 

4 I have a strong cyber security background. But I’ve not spent a huge amount of time managing my own privacy. 4 As said above, I’ve increased the privacy of my own personal profiles.

Profiles

LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mark-cole-2a701325/

Twitter Profile: https://twitter.com/macole111

Professional Website: www.markcole.co.uk

Personal blog: www.markcole.me.uk

Photography Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/markcolephoto/

Photography website: www.markcolephotography.co.uk

 

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