Final Reflection

UOSM2033 has been a breath of fresh air from the usual lecture and seminar focused modules. The sheer freedom and flexibility of when and how you write your post has allowed me to evenly spread my workload and also focus on applying for placements. I made the Infographic below to show a few of the many things I enjoyed about this module.

What I enjoyed.png

At the start of this module we were asked to complete a self-test to help us track our progress. Below is a graph I have made using the data from my self-test to see how I have improved throughout the module. (Full self-test can be found at the bottom of this post)

self-test-graphThe graph shows that I have improved at least a bit in every area covered and I honestly feel I have taken many new skills away from this module. I personally feel I have advanced the most in producing online materials and this is something I will definitely have use for in the future.

Most people my age spend the majority of their time online and would probably consider themselves a digital resident. However, after completing this module and acquiring a better understanding of these concepts, I would conclude that I am neither a digital resident nor a digital visitor. Instead, I feel I sit somewhere on this continuum, perhaps closer now to a digital resident than ever before.

Topic 3 opened my eyes to the importance of ensuring continuity across social media platforms, making myself more discoverable to potential employers. Changing current profile pictures and using the same username on LinkedIn, WordPress, Twitter, YouTube and Gmail has helped link all of my profiles together into my own professional portfolio. Furthermore, this topic brought to my attention the seriousness of keeping professional profiles separate to personal profiles in order to avoid incidents like Justine Sacco.

I have been improving my LinkedIn profile to the point where my profile is now considered ‘expert’ level and I have seen significant increases in my profile views, placing me in the top 9% of my connections.



This module has definitely taught me the importance of being active online and ensuring I am constantly engaging with my connections and followers.

Since starting to regularly check my LinkedIn, I have noticed a massive increase in views on my profile. What is even more shocking, is that I now spend more time on my professional accounts than I do on my personal accounts, which is definitely a better use of my time.

Overall, this module has definitely widened my knowledge in all the areas covered, from creating and managing my online profiles to educating me about the risks of being online. It took me almost an hour to publish my first post as I couldn’t bring myself to press the button. However, I now feel far more confident about posting online and look forward to continuing with my blog in the foreseeable future.

Below is a video I made looking back on my previous posts.


Word count: 500

Self Test:


Infographic made on:

YouTube video:



Topic 5 Reflection

What I learnt this week-2.png

Above is a quick summary of what I learnt this week. This week’s topic was talking about open access and I found this topic especially challenging. As a student, I require access to a wide variety of material, but only at certain points in the year. I would ideally like to be able to access what I need when I need it for free. However, after reading others takes on the topic, there is so much more to take into account.

Alice’s blog post focused on the advantages and disadvantages of open access and concluded that she felt the advantages of open access outweighed the disadvantages. I asked Alice if she felt content providers should be rewarded more for their efforts. The main reason being is that I spoke about paywalls and I feel this is the best solution for students such as myself. It offers a compromise, where there is a limit to what you can use a month before you pay for any more content that you use.

Tiffany’s post this week was really interesting, I loved how she incorporated the idea of YouTube into her post. Everyone uses YouTube and everyone just expects to be able to see it all for free. She also offers the question, is it ethical to determine who has the right to knowledge by placing extortionate monetary barriers? I feel this is a great question to ask, personally I would have to say although content producers spend a great majority of their time researching and writing papers I feel as though everyone should have access to these papers.

Overall, this topic was difficult as there is a lot to take into account, but, it was also difficult to balance the posts this week with other assignments. I look forward to writing my final post with the freedom of the Christmas holidays.


(use link to view piktochart larger)

Word Count: 309

Top image ref:


Topic 5 – Open Access

Content providers spend a great amount of their time researching and writing papers. Although sometimes their work is funded by government bodies, they should also be rewarded for their efforts and have their work recognised.

Open Access is about making all scientific research available for anyone from anywhere in the world. Before I continue, below is a quick summary I have made.

I am sure almost all of you know the struggle of writing an essay, finding an article which would link perfectly, only to discover in order to view the whole article you are required to sign up and pay a membership fee.

Personally, as a student, my University life would be so much easier (and far cheaper) if all the resources I needed were available for free. However, I understand that for many content producers the information they are sharing is how they make a living, so this is not really an option. But, there seems little point in paying for textbooks or articles that will be used once and potentially never read again.

“Education is first and foremost an enterprise of sharing. “ 

Education has always been about the passing on of knowledge from one person to another. Whether this be in a school, online, or learning from each other in everyday life. Today more than ever we rely on people making their findings accessible. However, people in less economically developed countries are not as fortunate to have access to all this information, which can be especially damaging if the research could save a person’s life. It is essential that important research and findings are shared and the people who are introducing new ideas or concepts are rewarded accordingly.

One solution I found, which benefits content producers,  are paywalls, explained in the poster I made below.

Liam Mullins
makes a great point that “getting readers to pay for something they are used to getting for free is hard.” However, the Telegraph may have found a way around this using a paywall that limits viewers access to 20 articles per month. This decision allows a compromise between open access and restricted access which could work for everyone.

I believe there is a great need for open access in today’s society and I know I cannot afford to keep buying textbooks and articles for every different module I take. However, the idea of complete open access seems a little far-fetched and The Telegraphs concept of limiting articles before a cost is introduced would definitely benefit many people.

Word Count: 418

Featured image reference:

Available at: (Accessed: 7 December 2016).


David, W., Cable, G. and Louis, S. (2012) Dramatically bringing down the cost of education with OER: How open education resources unlock the door to free learning. Available at: (Accessed: 5 December 2016).

Dunn, D. (2013) Education finally ripe for radical innovation by social entrepreneurs. Available at: (Accessed: 6 December 2016).

Lepitak, S. (2016) Media buyers’ reaction: The sun and the telegraph to introduce paywalls. Available at: (Accessed: 5 December 2016).

Piled Higher and Deeper (PHD Comics) (2012) Open access explained! Available at: (Accessed: 6 December 2016).

Video references:

Piled Higher and Deeper (PHD Comics) (2012) Open access explained! Available at: (Accessed: 6 December 2016).

SPARC (2007) Open access – SPARC. Available at: (Accessed: 7 December 2016).

Poster references:

Lavin, S. (2015) The pros and cons of Paywall software in online publishing. Available at: (Accessed: 6 December 2016).

Techopedia (2016) What is Paywall? – definition from Techopedia. Available at: (Accessed: 5 December 2016).

Topic 4 – Reflection

The freedom of this week’s topic allowed people to dive further into areas that they found interesting. Personally, the idea of ‘catfish’ from the point of view of the person whose identity is being stolen interested me the most and I felt very strongly about this topic. What was surprising was Tiffany also felt strongly about this topic especially because she herself has been used to ‘catfish’ someone else. We shared very similar opinions and both spoke of the damage it can cause.

Joe’s post about teachers using social media really stood out to me this week. He presented some really interesting ideas and strongly believes teachers should not have to give up their online identity. His argument is based on the idea that teachers have to choose a different name in order to protect themselves from children’s prying eyes, which in his opinion defeats the point of having a true online identity. Although I agree that it is not  fair for the teachers, I do not think that students and teachers interacting on social media is appropriate.

Gus’s post on online identity and how it can affect our employment prospects was a major wake-up call to me. He suggests that companies can get hold of your social media profiles regardless of your privacy settings. I have always believed that the security settings offered me a shield from potential employers, so I will definitely check through my posts more regularly. He also mentions that if you don’t have social media pages there is the possibility you to be discriminated against. I found this to be a very interesting point as I would have expected social media to be more of a hindrance when applying for a job.

Reading the many different approaches to this week’s choice of topics has been incredibly interesting and has shed light on a variety of topics in ways I would not have considered. I look forward to next week’s topic and learning more from the many different approaches.

Featured image

Topic 4 – Give me back my pictures!

In one of my previous blog posts, I have mentioned ‘Catfish’ and how this was one of the many negatives of having multiple online identities. For those who perhaps did not see this post, the video below is a quick overview of ‘Catfish’.

I think it is fair to say that ‘catfishing’ is an increasingly common issue occurring online. However, the view which is most commonly portrayed is that of the person who has been ‘catfished’. But, what is it really like for the people whose identity is being stolen?

Can you imagine if someone took everything you posted online, whether it be pictures of you, your family and friends and passed it off as their own? Well, for Ruth Palmer this was a very real problem. Furthermore, if taking someones pictures isn’t bad enough imagine how she felt when someone literally re-wrote her life for everyone to see and portrayed her as a completely different person. I personally cannot think of anything worse. Kelly McCarthy and Jon Will Chambers are also examples of people who have had their pictures taken and used to seek out online relationships. I have previously mentioned that I am currently looking for a placement this year and Jobvite’s statistics show that recruiters use social media to check out applicants before offering them a position. If someone was to take my pictures and use them for this purpose, it could potentially jeopardise my chance of securing a placement, especially if the life they were creating was deemed unprofessional.

However, people’s photos can also be taken for different purposes e.g. artist Richard prince made a hefty amount of money ($90,000 per picture) from taking people’s Instagram pictures without asking and blowing the pictures up to put in an exhibition. There are many stories of people taking credit for photographs that don’t belong to them and trying to pass them off as their own, but before reading the article on Richard prince I had never heard of someone taking people’s Instagram photos to display as an art piece.

Both taking someone’s personal pictures to pretend to be someone else and using other people’s photos in order to make money are questionable. Below I have made a mind map to summarise ethics in regards to this topic.


Is it so wrong to take someone else’s pictures and pass them off as your own? The simple answer to this is YES, it is completely unethical to take someones pictures and pass them off as your own. Whether it be pictures of the person, their friends or even an artistic picture they have taken themselves, they belong to that person and should not be used without permission or recognition.


Battersby, M. (2015) Stolen Instagram photo sells for $90, 000. Available at: (Accessed: 22 November 2016).
Chambers, J.W. (2016) Experience: My face was stolen online. Available at: (Accessed: 23 November 2016).
Jobvite (2014) Social recruiting survey. Available at: (Accessed: 23 November 2016).
Kleinman, Z. (2015) Who’s that girl? The curious case of Leah Palmer. Available at: (Accessed: 21 November 2016).
McCarthy, K. (2014) Someone used my photo to create A fake tinder account, and it could happen to you. Available at: (Accessed: 21 November 2016).
Rogers, K. (2013) Instagram users begin fightback against stolen photos. Available at: (Accessed: 23 November 2016).
The List Show TV (2013) What’s trending: What is ‘catfishing’ and is it here to stay? Available at: (Accessed: 22 November 2016).
Sources used for mind map
BBC (2009) Ethics – introduction to ethics: Ethics: A general introduction. Available at: (Accessed: 23 November 2016).
Jason, Steffan, Sarah and Garrett (no date) Identity Theft Awareness – Ethical issues. Available at: (Accessed: 21 November 2016).
Oxford Dictionaries (no date) Ethics. Available at: (Accessed: 23 November 2016).
Santa Clara (2016) What is ethics? Available at: (Accessed: 23 November 2016).
Featured Image created on: Wordl

Reflection on Topic 3

After reading many different posts about how an authentic online professional profile can be developed, it became clear that there were quite a few different approaches. Although many agreed that LinkedIn was essential people had different ideas about how to best create an online professional profile.

I found it interesting to read the different takes people had especially Will’s post which pointed out that the most obvious and straight forward way to start is by conducting yourself well online. Interestingly, Will belives that if you are a professional this should be reflected in everything you do online. However, in my opinion I think this is not true. The internet is there for many purposes, one of these is being professional but I think there is also a time to use it for leisure and socialising. My facebook for example is not professional but I limit who can see what I am posting to ensure it cannot hinder potential job opportunities.

Hei’s post was another which I found interesting to read, referring to today’s workplace as a jazz band. She speaks about the importance of having multiple professional accounts and using the combination of platforms to make up your professional profile. I have to be honest and say before taking this module I would never have thought to use anything other than LinkedIn when creating my professional profile. She also refers to vloggers such as Zoella which I would also not have thought about when creating a professional profile but it a unique way to stand out from other people.

Topic 3 has made me understand the importance of being professional online and how best to go about creating a profile. As previously mentioned I am currently on a search for a placement as part of my third year and having an appropriate professional online profile will play a very important role in securing a good position.

Topic 3 -Discuss the ways in which an authentic online professional profile can be developed.

Last week’s topic looked at the positives and negatives of having multiple online identities, which links nicely to this week’s topic. I think it is fair to say that anyone can have an online profile but it takes more time and effort to create an authentic online professional profile.

The trail you leave online (also known as your ‘digital footprint’) gives a surprising amount of information about yourself. After watching this video I googled my name and where I am from. My results are shown below.


This semester I have started my search for a placement for next year. Immediately after sending off my first application I felt the need to amp up the security settings on all of my social networking sites to ensure anything that may have been deemed as unprofessional was hidden from potential employers. The above results show just how easy it is for an employer to find you online and quickly make a decision based on how you market yourself.

Thankfully I changed my privacy settings after applying for my placement as there are many horror stories about employers stumbling across pictures deemed as inappropriate on Facebook, or even inappropriate tweets. An example being Ashley Payne who posted a picture of herself with a glass of wine and pint of beer whilst on holiday on her Facebook. She lost her job.

Jobvite’s statistics show that a huge percentage of employers (94%) use LinkedIn to search, contact, keep tabs on and vet candidates, 66% use Facebook and 52% use Twitter. These statistics alone show the importance of having an authentic online professional profile which markets you appropriately across different platforms. Think how many opportunities could be missed by neglecting the importance of your professional profile!

What mistakes are made when making an authentic online professional profile?

This video shows you what to avoid, but…

What can you do to develop an authentic online professional profile?


I have made this spider diagram to illustrate some of the things I feel are important when developing a professional profile.

It is clear that the times are changing and it is no longer a case of handing over a CV. I have noticed that different companies have many different ways of distinguishing between candidates, for example NEXT requires an online assessment as well as a CV. Other companies such as Asos allow candidates to apply for jobs via their Linkedin pages. LinkedIn is extremely important and when properly used can be an extremely beneficial way of promoting yourself. Below are some important tips when creating a LinkedIn page which will help to establish a well presented and professional profile. It could even be the deciding factor of landing that job you want.


CBS North Carolina (2016) Your professional online profile. Available at: Last Accessed 9 November 2016

Daily Mail Reporter (2011) Mail Online. Available at: Last Accessed 9 November 2016

Edmond, D. (2014) Optimize your LinkedIn profile with these 10 key elements. Available at: Last Accessed 10 November 2016

Jobvite (2014) Social recruiting survey. Available at: Last Accessed 7 November 2016

Ronson, J. (2015). How One Stupid Tweet Blew Up Justine Sacco’s Life. Available: Last accessed 9 November 2016

References for spider diagram

Bowes. P. (2013). Job hunting: How to promote yourself online. Available: Last accessed 9 November 2016

The Employable. (2014). How blogging can help you get a job. Available: Last accessed 9 November 2016

Washington and Lee University (no date) Developing your online image. Available at: Last accessed 10 November 2016