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on August 31, 2010
This is the fourth Jane Bozarth book that I've purchased so clearly I'm a fan. The writing is clear and to the point; well-researched and includes numerous personal examples. Most importantly this book is chock full of practical advice. Jane tackles Twitter, Facebook, Blogs, Wikis, and other tools discussing advantages and disavantages of each medium. I especially liked the many activities that she suggests. For example, in the general discussion on Blogs Jane lists at least a dozen different activities such as Case Studies, Debate, Scavenger Hunt, and Round Robin providing explanations of how each activity might work in a blog. As a trainer, I can't wait to to try some of these for myself. Even though the book is a compact 173 pages, I feel it could benefit from an index. Also, as is true of many other training books, this is a bit pricey at $35. Nevertheless, I'm certain that this book will be very useful for a trainer seeking to take advantage of Social Media. It is very timely and relevant.
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on October 10, 2010
Yes, it's that kind of book. The kind you read, perhaps even skim the chapter on Twitter/microblogging because today you are feeling over tweets, then something clicks in you later and you think, "oh! Jane had a great idea about using tweets in training!" Then, there you are with the dog-eared book, making notes in the margin about another great idea.

On page 21, Jane encourages the reader to "walk the talk" and make strides towards being The Networked Trainer. She includes a graphic that I think really shows what the book and social media are all about. It's about you. It's about the whole you. (You'll have to get the book to see it. Not sure about permissions and I have scanner issues. Mea culpa.)

This image, it shows you as the hub in wheel of social media. What I like most about it is that various spokes several multiple purposes. There's spokes on Twitter, LinkedIn, Videos, Images, Conferences, Resources. Let's look at this wheel.

--These spokes can be for your learners. As in, this is your class: "here class go watch this video...connect to each other on LinkedIn...meet me in the conference room Tuesday at 3pm."

--These spokes can be for you. As in, this is your informal learning and professional development plan: "I need feedback on my wild ice breaker idea...I need to store resources on my fav topic...I need to see what others are doing!"

Social Media for Trainers can fit you where you are now. Ready to bring it into class? Great! There are techniques. Ready to build yourself? Great! It can help you with that too. Too scared of Twitter? No worries, the book is segmented so you can read just the chapters that you are ready for. Best of all, Jane offers practical, real world examples with pictures!

I thought I was networked. I've got Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Delicious, WebEx, IM, Flickr & Picassa, and this blog. I learned about Google Wave, wikis, mashups, slide share, and ways to host an online classroom without Blackboard. Wow. So much to learn!
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on October 14, 2010
The challenge of finding a book on applying social media to a learning environment (whether K-12 or business and industry) is the inherit nature for Web 2.0 applications to change. Over the last two or three years many Web 2.0 applications appeared, disappeared, merged, or changed without warning.

Jane Bozarth's "Social Media for Trainers" serves as a handbook for supplanting existing training or replacing traditional training with social media. The author examines Twitter, Facebook , blogs, wikis, and other tools (including but not limited to Google Docs, YouTube, social bookmarking, Skype, and SlideShare.)

As with any successful handbook for trainers, instructional designers and trainers "Social Media for Trainers" covers major aspects of implementing and managing social media in training. For each social media application, Jane Bozarth covers, from a training perspective, the major characteristics and the advantages and disadvantages of social each of these social media applications. Additionally, she provides a view of each application as a stand-alone or a supplement to existing training efforts. Best of all (and where other training handbooks sometimes fail) is that the author describes how to get started using social media tools. This is especially important since the design of social media tools does not specifically accommodate learning. Additionally, the author provides detailed case studies which include pre-work, in-class, intersession activities, and post-training event activities. Each of the case studies with a focus on the unique attributes of the specific social media.

I recommend "Social Media for Trainers" for trainers, instructional designers, and teachers involved with training and teaching at all levels.
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on April 5, 2011
Social Media for Trainers was just the resource I was looking for. It's an easy to use manual with clear explanations and good screen captures of some of the social media tools available for trainers and educators. It's very accessible (an index would help in further editions) and has some good resources I wasn't aware of. Could be especially useful in a university setting to involve learners between classroom sessions.
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on September 15, 2010
Using social media networks and tools to enhance the training experience is purely a how and when question. It is analogous to the sentiment of the past where IT would say, you can't have personal computers or you won't be allowed to use the Internet at work.

The quicker we embrace social media the faster we address the needs of the millennial generation we instruct.

Jane Bozarth has created an important book for us to learn from. I add it to my reading list and skills repertoire with zeal.
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on December 28, 2012
This is not a very large book, but it contains a lot if good ideas. I have used several of them already, and plan to try more. One is to set up a special group on Facebook to allow students in a course to interact with each other. Threaded discussions just don't have the richness of Facebook, and perhaps the best part is, Facebook is free. The only real improvement I would request is more examples of applications from other instructors. I will be using it more in the future.
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on December 2, 2010
I really enjoyed this book. It was an easy read and is packed with a lot of "useful" suggestions on how to get started with Social Learning. It would be uber helpful for those who are new to social learning. The guided tour of the various social media tools with examples of how they have been/can be used for training was invaluable and now I use the book as my quick reference guide when I am looking for ways to enhance/extend learning.
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on January 20, 2011
Scared to death of social media, or swear you'll never use it? Get over it with the help of Jane Bozarth's excellent, practical book. If you are in training, and want to experiment with one or two ideas, this guide will provide you an extraordinary arrays of ideas from which to choose. Now there's no excuse for not starting, so get out there and do it!
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on September 8, 2010
I consider myself an active, knowledgeable, and savvy social media user in a professional sense, even though I am no expert, so there were times when I wanted to skip or skim certain section of this book. "What is Twitter? Duh, I know that." "What is a Wiki? Please!" "Oh, I know this already," I thought several times. However, if I had skipped these sections, it would have been a huge mistake, and fortunately (or luckily) for me, I slowed down and read. Hubris is a B#$%&!

Jane walks the reader through useful ways that a trainer can use social media to enhance and extend any training event or learning experience. The examples are not only useful, they are ideas one can implement almost immediately. There are so many great ideas that I tweeted that I was running out of margin space and ink as I took notes on all the good ideas I want to implement.

Trainers should devour this book. Instructional designers better implement the ideas from this book into their course designs or else. In fact, I would say that an instructional designer should not design another class without implementing the ideas in this book. It is that important to improving the effectiveness of training.

After reading this book, you will know exactly how to use Twitter, Blogs, Facebook, and Wikis to improve learner engagement in your training sessions and ultimately, performance on the job after training. Not only will you know exactly how to use these tools, but I suspect you will also know when to use each one.

This book is not for reading, it is for using. Bring a well-sharpened pencil or new pen.

@billcush
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on September 6, 2010
I have been a Jane Bozarth fan since her first book. She has obviously worked in the 'real world' and always produces relevant, useful content. This new book is no exception. Aimed at the traditional trainer, the author provides dozens of ideas, activities, and exercises that the frontline trainer can put into place right away. The book focuses on several categories of tools (like microblogs and wikis) that exist in many varied forms. Bozarth chose wisely, focusing on tools likely to be around for awhile (like Facebook)although specific forms and products may evolve over time. I especially liked the "focusing" approach she takes with each tool, encouraging readers to first look at simple-root purpose, then moving on to viewing the tool as a means of supporting instuction, collaboration, and social and informal learning.

As an added bonus: the author is a social media power-user and is very accessible via Twitter and Facebook, where she frequently posts updates to the book.
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