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Digital creation, presentation and scholarship

Explore tools which help you to visualise and present information to your network.
Graphic representation of students sitting around a table surrounded by a range of digital devices and a cloud of ideas and icons.
© David Arts/

It is important to remember that in network terms we have to give before we can get. In other words, we should aim to add ‘value’ to our network by creating, sharing, helping, responding and contributing to others.

Clearly, responding and replying to other members of your network, liking or commenting on posts, or retweeting can be simple, but effective, ways to create network value.

However, when building your network value, it is worth keeping in mind some of the potential risks when using social media.

Creativity and Sharing

Creating useful resources for your network, and then sharing them in the appropriate ways, may help you build greater network value. This might be as simple as taking some selfies or pictures on your smartphone during a night out and sharing them on Snapchat or Instagram with your friends.

However, it may also include creating more educational resources, perhaps presented through your own blog (e.g. WordPress – find out more about the value of blogging), your Youtube channel, on high quality images sites such as Flickr, or by posting them to forums or groups.

You should think carefully about how to create and present your ideas/knowledge to others – your audience is potentially global and we all have our digital differences.

So, is text really always best or can a visual image or video say a thousand words?

There are lots of free tools available for creating visuals, some examples for you to explore and experiment with can be found below:

You can find excellent examples of all the above tools in the work of our Southampton students. See Patricia’s and Carolina’s posts for a wide range of helpful visualisations.

You may also want to try some more advanced animation tools, including 3D animations.

There is also a wide range of potentially useful data visualisation tools for presenting academic research.

Always keep in mind copyright issues. For example, you may want to use copyright-safe image search engines when creating visuals – the pictures on Google Images may not always be safe to use.

Also, don’t forget to link to your self-produced resources from across your network platforms (e.g. Tweet about your new blog post or Flickr image) – your network needs to know about your efforts!

Voluntary Activity – Try creating an image, infographic or video about what you have found interesting on this course … or about anything else which you find interesting (and appropriate).
Post a link to your visuals and a brief description in the comments below and see what responses you get …
What creative tools or services do you know about and/or use already?
© University of Southampton
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