The module Principles and Practice of Urban Design was one of the most enjoyable modules. We were introduced to a number of inspirational lectures on various topics from sustainable urban transport to wellbeing in urban setting. The task was to write a blog on selected lectures, developing the theme further by doing some academic research.
As this was my first blogging experience, I was excited to post it and share it with my friends and family on social networks. Receiving positive feedbacks helped me feel more confident in writing and expressing my thoughts.
In the beginning of semester we had a session with bloggers who shared some key points of blogging experience with us. According to them, the key elements in blog writing are the followings:
- Do as much research on the selected topic as you can
- Support your writing by relevant references
- Think about the structure of your post
- Keep the structure simple and legible
- Include images that would support your writing visually
- Provide links to sources where your audience might read more about the topic
- Use linking words to connect sentences
- Keywords and tags will help the audience find the posts
The blogging started by doing some alterations to the webpage. We met every two weeks discussing our progress and deciding what our blog would look like. To enrich my blogging experience, I volunteered to take part in designing the banner for the website and footer image under instructions of Simon Honeywood, who is working on our website. It gave me a possibility to learn more on how the websites are designed visually, explore the possibilities and learn from mistakes. I also suggested the idea with our photos on members’ page and it was welcomed by my colleagues.
Blogging is an important part of contemporary education and many universities expect their students to blog. However, this particular experience was different as it gave us more freedom-we could choose what to blog about. A number of useful tools such as Academia, Oxford Academic journals, JSTOR, JURN gave us an opportunity to access academic writings instantly. Doing research and writing the blog is a great way to learn new information and share it with others. The blog allowed us to learn more about urban design history and future, sharing our experiences from around the world. As I lived and studied in London 4 years, in most of my examples and case studies I choose this vibrant and historically rich city.
This experience also made me more confident in doing research and reflecting it. My time management still needs improvement and I plan to post more regularly in the next semester. I am hoping to continue blogging and develop strong academic writing skills in the future which would be useful in my career.