TCC08: Social Bookmarking to Support Professional Practice

Using a Social Bookmark Site to Assist in Diffusion of Online Information to Support Professional Practices

Presented by Heather Carter-Templeton, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, Tennessee

Working to improve information literacy skills in nurses

Professor #1

  • Does online research
  • Gets email subscriptions
  • Can’t find the information she wants when she needs it–it’s at home when she needs it at work, etc.

Professor #2

  • Uses social bookmarking so can find what he needs

Tagging with social bookmarking can help peers & colleagues find information more easily

Social Bookmarking Sites

  • CiteULike: academic papers & links, does citations
  • Connotea: citation manager
  • most popular, emphasis is on community
  • Digg: community-based news, user ranking
  • Furl: keeps a cache, offers full-text searching. Tagging is secondary.
  • Reddit: news article bookmarking like Digg
  • Simpy: can track others’ bookmarks by creating topics
  • Spurl: Bookmarking & search engine, like Furl

Pros of Social Bookmarking:

  • New communities
  • Gain insight
  • Easy access
  • Organized based on your needs
  • Can view how others have organized their thoughts
  • Easy to use


  • Have to maintain and update the site throughout a project–clean out the dead links
  • No oversight for tagging

Their list for the project:

Sources were collected by SMEs and nursing librarians

Documented their search strategies in a Google Spreadsheet This would be useful for teaching students information literacy

Tagging System

  • Had to change sometimes after the list grew that they needed to adjust
  • Tried to make it useful for the nurses
  • used lots of compound tags
  • Tagging structure: subject, keywords, type of media
  • Bundled tags

Nurses really like the central repository–they can find the information they need quickly. It’s too new to have data on how they use it though.

This is an interesting concept–I guess I’m not sure that I see as much use for resources only collected by experts without the users contributing on their own. Certainly there’s a place for having a starting point created for students, like I my list for Building Online Collaborative Environments. But I’d want students to use that themselves. Certainly for a professional practice, the act of saving and annotating on your own is valuable too.

Read the other liveblogged posts from this conference.

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