Using tagclouds in teaching

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Gráinne Conole
27 September 2009

As tools like Wordle and Tagul have become availble as an alternative way of presenting ideas, I wonder how these tools might be used in teaching. I have been at a number of conferences recently where tagclouds have been generated as a means of summarising visually the discussions at the conference and in particular highlighting the key and most discussed ideas. As a conference this week someone said they used it with students where English was not their native language, as a means of presenting the main ideas in Business case studies.

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Thanks Gill very interesting to explore the different ways in which these tools can be used:

  • Means of summarising key points around a collective discussion
  • Enabling students to focus on key features or learning points for a text
  • As part of qualitiative analysis.

Gráinne Conole
07:37 on 9 October 2009

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Rebecca Galley
2:22pm 30 September 2009


One of my students last year taught a community adult basic IT course (with hidden literacy!) She got her students to write 250 words about their favourite TV programmes and then make a Wordle from it. The Cloud showed where words had been repeated (ie where learners should try finding different words) and as a visual tool to share learning at the end of the lesson. It was really good stuff.

Gráinne Conole
7:55am 3 October 2009


What a simple but brilliant activity!

Gill Clough
2:26pm 8 October 2009


I've used Tagcrowd to give me a starting point for analysing qualitative text data. By running tagcrowd on a piece of text (in my case, thousands of words of free text responses to an online web survey) you can get a feel for the sorts of themes that might be emerging. You then have to go through and code the data as usual, but it can be pretty powerful.

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