With the growth of online chat areas and the use of social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Yammer, YouTube, VKontakte, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, MySpace, Tencent QQ, WeChat, Renren, Youku, Xing and various others; you would think that by now, we’d all be quite adept at sharing information online with our friends and work colleagues.

If that’s the case, then I wonder why it’s so difficult to get my academic students to use our private discussion board inside the University firewall to support the learning process, share knowledge, ideas and information?




For the last five years, I’ve tried to encourage the Post-Graduate HRM students on the modules that I teach, to use this medium to discuss, ask questions and share knowledge and information with each other ~ all with varying degrees of success.

So why doesn’t this work as well as it might?  It’s true that exposing your thoughts, and perhaps even your lack of understanding in writing might be worrying for some.  However sharing such information behind closed doors ~ aka a firewall ~ is surely better than sharing on an open public space where everyone can see what you’re writing?


Until next time ~ happy learning!




Józefa Fawcett

Professional Trainer, Learning Specialist Designer & Voice-Over