What is social annotation?
Social annotation brings the individual experience of marking up a text with highlights, notes and questions to a shared online space where individuals can now share their mark ups and commentary as well as respond to each other’s comments and questions.
Why use social annotation?
“When we read and think together, a text can become a richer learning object. We can learn how others make sense of a reading or how they deconstruct the text. Annotation can help a class understand the mechanisms behind building an argument or offer them the space to flag portions of the text that are unclear. Annotating online can embed a class discussion within the text itself.
Studies have shown that social annotation can assist students with:
- processing domain-specific knowledge
- supporting argumentation and inquiry
- improving literacy skills
- connecting online learning spaces.”
~ Cornell U. Center for Teaching Innovation
What social annotation tools should I consider using?
Hypothes.is is a free open source software that offers the ability to create text anchored marginalia and highlighting on class readings, news articles, scientific papers, etc. – in others words, written text on the web.
View this video to see how it works. (5:07 minutes)
Perusall is a platform that is free for students, instructors, and educational institutions. The platform began as a research project at Harvard U. With this platform students and instructors can mark up not only web texts but also online image, audio and video files.
View this video to see how it works. (5:41 minutes)
Both products have clear “get started” and extensive support documentation.