We’ve been vocal about our love of the Twittersphere here at Chalkup. (Seriously. It’s documented.)
Today we’re sharing advanced techniques for mining Twitter for the best news and ideas from the edu community. This includes better ways to search, winning hashtags, and strategies to help other learners find you.
Hashtags that aren’t #edtech
Our go-to for a quick newscan is to see what’s happening with the #edtech hashtag. Lots of winning tweets in there. But if it’s edu and tech news that you seek, there are a handful of other hashtags that will lead you to good stuff.
After exhausting your #edtech search, try:
Use Your Bio So People Can Find You
Speaking of hashtags, you can do more than search with them. By placing a hashtag or two in your bio, you’ll make it easier for other educators to find you, follow, and connect.
Call yourself an #elearning guru or a #byotchat lover - whatever matches your Twitterverse interests.
Make and Follow Lists
A critique of Twitter is that the format makes it difficult to consume tweets from everyone you follow. It’s impossible to always be plugged in, and the more people you follow, the faster your feed will fill up.
Lists are the answer to this critique, making it possible to sort handles into specialty feeds you can catch up on without wading through tweets from every single handle you follow.
We recommend sorting by topic - perhaps a list for fellow teachers and another for stellar #edtech outlets.
To make your own list, you can head to the “Lists” menu found on your profile page, or selected from the drop-down menu accessible through your user icon in the top right-hand of your screen.
This menu will allow you to curate lists. To add a new handle to your lists, click the gear icon on their Twitter page and select “Add or remove from lists.” (Fun fact: you don’t need to follow someone to add them to one of your lists.)
Similarly, you can follow lists curated by other Twitter users. For example, at Chalkup, we have our own set of Twitter lists: EdTech Content Curators, Techy Teachers, and EdTech Thought Leaders. If you don’t feel like creating something of your own, you can always subscribe to ours.
The search bar in Twitter has its own set of tricks. Familiarize yourself with these operators:
Operator: #mlearning | Finds tweets containing the hashtag "#mlearning."
Operator: "education technology" | Finds tweets containing the exact phrase "education technology."
Operator: blended -flipped | Finds tweets containing "blended" but not "flipped."
Operator: blended OR flipped | Finds tweets containing either "blended" or "flipped" (or both).
Operator: from:Chalkupedu | Finds tweets sent from the handle "Chalkupedu."
Operator: to:EdSurge | Finds tweets sent to person "EdSurge."
Operator: @TeachHub | Finds tweets referencing handle "TeachHub."
Operator: "edtech meetup" near:"New York City" | Finds tweets containing the exact phrase "edtech meetup" and sent near "New York City."
Operator: education -elementary :) | Finds tweets containing "education", but not "elementary," and with a positive attitude.
Operator: teaching :( | Finds tweets containing "teaching" and with a negative attitude.
Operator: learning ? | Finds tweets: containing "learning" and asking a question.
Operator: MOOC filter:links | Finds tweets containing "MOOC" and linking to URLs.
Operator: Google Apps since:2015-9-20 | Finds tweets containing "Google Apps" and sent since date "2015-09-20" (year-month-day).
Operator: iPad Pro until:2015-9-20 | Finds tweets containing " iPad Pro" and sent up to date "2015-9-20."
Create a Professional Account on the Same Email
If you’re using a Gmail or Google Apps account, a workaround exists to connect multiple Twitter accounts to a single email address. This is a handy hack if you’d like to maintain a Twitter account for personal use, but would like something professional for interacting with the edu community.
To do this, know that when you open an account in Gmail, you receive another valid email address that uses the “googlemail.com” domain. To add a second handle, use the “googlemail.com” domain.
Other hacks exist that involve tweaking your Gmail address to trick Twitter, but ensuring that all Twitter emails are sent to the same single account.