Social Media...its not just my opinion!

Social Media…its not just my opinion!

Those boys over at have released a couple of videos on their channel about their views of using social media in their professional lives. Its well worth a listen and I have embedded the first part below.

I wanted to highlight a couple of points which resonated with me.

Social media is my friend…

‘Educationally, there is no more efficient way for me to keep up with whats happening in emergency medicine than with social media’.

I loved this point! Twitter especially has been a revelation to me and I can honestly say that it has changed my professional life.

He also says in the presentation that he does not use social media in his personal life as he does not have time. I always wince a little when people say this kind of thing. I was also guilty of it in the past and have tried to now not do it. I think by saying this you may be guilty in some peoples eyes of accusing others that do use social media in this way of being slightly trivial and shallow. That may not be your intent but it may be interpreted that way.

I always want to engage with others through social media, my audience is out there, and if they choose to use it in a personal capacity then I at least can be sure that they are in the same place as me even if they are not using it the same way. I hope one day that they will discover that social media can be used in other ways to their benefit.

Time is my enemy?

The point about not having enough time to do personal social media is also something I have tried to stop saying. I know what it is like to be on the receiving end of this judgement by others. I catch myself when I am about to say that I do not have time for something, but rather I now say that it is not something that I want to make time for at present, but it might be something I will make time for in the future. I did not have ‘time’ for Twitter until about a year and a half ago but having discovered its benefits it is now part of my schedule. I don’t have anymore time than I used to have, I have just changed my perspective on what is useful to me.

New ways of learning…

Early on in the talk an article is quoted about the use of podcasts etc by residents for their learning with a high number finding it more useful than more traditional ways of learning. I have copied the summary from the PubMed page:


Medical education is transitioning from traditional learning methods. Resident interest in easily accessible education materials is forcing educators to reevaluate teaching methodology.


To determine emergency medicine residents’ current methods of and preferences for obtaining medical knowledge, the authors created a survey and sent it to residents, at all levels of training throughout the United States, whose e-mail addresses were available via their residency’s official Web site (June-December 2012). The eight-question voluntary survey asked respondents about demographics, their use of extracurricular time, and the materials they perceived as most beneficial. The authors used descriptive statistics to analyze results.


Of the 401 residents who received the e-mailed survey, 226 (56.3%) completed it. Of these, 97.7% reported spending at least one hour per week engaging in extracurricular education, and 34.5% reported spending two to four hours per week (P < .001). Time listening to podcasts was the most popular (reported by 35.0% of residents), followed by reading textbooks (33.6%) and searching Google (21.4%; P < .001). Residents endorsed podcasts as the most beneficial (endorsed by 70.3%) compared with textbooks (endorsed by 54.3%), journals (36.5%), and Google (33.8%; P < .001). Most respondents reported evaluating the quality of evidence or reviewing references “rarely” or less than half the time. A majority (80.0%) selected the topics they accessed based on recent clinical encounters.

Next steps

The results suggest that residents are using more open access interactive multimedia tools. Medical educators must engage with current learners to guide appropriate use of these.

The conclusion that educators must engage with learners seems to state the obvious, but even in my institution, which is forward thinking their still seems to be a reluctance to move forward with making education freely and quickly available. Should not EVERY lecture delivered by recorded and presented for us all to consume. The technology is there which can make the process simple….lets use it.

What are your thoughts? Do you have any experience with recording presentations you have made? How did you do it and what lessons did you learn?

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