Saturday, May 25, 2013

Five questions about content curation

Digital_Curation_Header by Dr. Joyce Valenza 
Image taken from Flickr from Gwyneth Bronwynne. Graphic by Dr. Joyce Valenza

I recently participated in a Twitter chat with my friends at #edtechchat and we discussed a great deal different aspects of content curation. I'd like to share my findings and the most relevant thoughts learned  about this great topic in the form of questions & answers. These are not the original questions form the chat though. I hope you enjoy this topic as much as I do:

Q1. What is content curation?

Content curation is the process by which we search and sift through the vast amount of content available online and we organize, sort and arrange it in such a meaningful way as to be able to share it with others. Put in other words, imagine you're Nemo in the vast ocean navigating alone: there are wonders that attract you here and there but you don't really know what's high quality content in the first place. You need to curate it first so that it is clear to you and to others that there has been a filter applied in the selection which makes that piece of information relevant and meaningful. Beth Kanter, @Kanter, puts it this way in her blog: "sorting through the vast amounts of content on the web and presenting it in a meaningfuland organized way around a specific theme".

Q2. What are some of the actions involved in content curation?

These are mentioned in no particular order:
  • sift through
  • seek
  • search
  • scan
  • select
  • organize
  • annotate
  • present
  • analyze
  • display
  • apply criteria
  • tag
  • sort
Q3. What are some best practices for content curation?
  1. Be picky about what to include. It's not about filling your curation backpack with any link that comes your way. It's about finding the very best.
  2. The purpose of this is to share. It has some use if you keep it to yourself but it's all about sharing. Find the right way to do it!
  3. @MaineSchoolTech: curation is all about metacognition. It helps you ask yourself: Why am I choosing this, or that?
  4. Use content curation to build trust and loyalty from your followers. The more relevant and meaningful content you provide to others, the more likely they will come back to you for more.
  5. Improve the quality of the information. When we curate content from the web, we're helping it stay clean from devious and misleading information and therefore, a safer place in which to learn.

Q4: What are some uses for content curation?
  • Curation is useful in collecting new sources of information and moving away from dry textbooks
  • Extremely useful when you want to share content in professional development sessions
  • A great way to reach a large audience at the same time
  • Beneficial when building an MOOC as we can better select what to include
  • It helps teachers do a better job by teaching with better tools and more relevant content
  • It helps access information in a faster and more structured way. This is an important skill for a student to develop. @MaineSchoolTech says students need to forget about memorization.
  • It allows students to exercise their self-directed learning skills.

Q5: What are some of the best tools for content curation?
Your favorite is not listed here? Please include in a comment so it can be added to the list. With your contribution, this post can be enriched. Please feel free to add your comments and suggestions for improvement. 


  1. Thanks for the excellent tips. The quality of content being shared seems to improve daily!

    I'm currently using Evernote to curate resources for inquiry-based learning and teaching. Here's a link to my first post about it:

  2. Whatever information you are searching over internet. It is the top priority that information should be latest so that you are the first person to share with your friends. Curation tools give you freedom to share any kind of instruction with your friend by just single click. more information

  3. These are great tips and resources. In addition to several applications listed above, is another go-to curation tool to consider. Thanks for sharing.

  4. How about adding symbaloo / symbalooEDU?

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