Twitter as Professional Development

As a PhD candidate, maybe you think you’re above Twitter. Maybe you’ve only seen it used for egotistical self promotion, or worse just to share with the world what someone ate for lunch. However, I’m here to say that Twitter is actually the best way to connect quickly with teachers of like-mindedness, as well as with teachers who will boggle your mind with what they do in their classroom. Twitter is a powerful learning tool for educators.

While George Couros, author of Innovator’s Mindset, doesn’t say you HAVE to be on Twitter to be innovative, he has said, that many teachers who are innovative happen to be on Twitter. There’s just something about connecting with other educators around the world that helps us to have a more balanced and global approach to what we do in the classroom.

To encourage you to consider Twitter as a viable professional development (PD) tool, I’ve   started a tutorial series titled “Twitter for Innovative Thinkers.” Part 1 is called “Educator’s Guide to Twitter: The Profile Page.”  In this first tutorial I explain how Twitter is used by innovative people (compared to popular culture) and  I then go through the elements of a Twitter profile page to prepare YOU to set up our own account.

In Part 2 titled “Hashtags and other Twitter Terms I Don’t Know” I will share the construction of a tweet along with the importance of a hashtag.  Coming soon.

I double-dog dare you to open a Twitter account today and begin experiencing learning (as a teacher) like never before! Have Fun!

~Dr. Darci Harland


Dissertation obstacles

I extended a challenge to some of my course work students to study this photo (that I took in Jamestown, Virginia) and had them each share a quote about the PhD journey that might go with it. I love how the wall and the tree seem to be connected…I’m actually unsure of which came first; The goal or the obstacle? Obstacles are really growth opportunities, even if at the time we don’t see it that way!

As you study this photo, I’m sure you can think of all sorts of analogies for this photo and your Walden life; but know that the road to finishing your PhD will be bumpy, but that the obstacles in your way will provide growth. And growth, no matter how slow, is happening, and will make a difference long-term; just like the connection between this wall and tree.


I also think the juxtaposition of the old brick fence and the modern metal fence (in the background) might lend itself to some philosophical discussion too! Anyone want to chime in?

The wind,

~Dr. Darci

Welcome to No ABD for Me

Yeah! Congratulations, you’re almost done with your coursework and so now you’re beginning to get serious about your allusive dissertation topic.  The looming dissertation is the last, albeit rather large, hurdle you must move through before you earn that title of Doctor. And you’ve worked too hard to become an “All But Dissertation” (ABD) statistic.

No ABD for me…No ABD for me…No ABD for me…

Is this your mantra? Do those around you keep reminding you to push forward? While I’m sure you’re enjoying the journey, at some point the attitude is “I just want to finish!”

I’ve decided that in order to streamline my ability to mentor you through the dissertation mentoring process I will post my tips for getting through the dissertation journey here on this blog. My hope is help you answer the question, “How do you eat an elephant?” The answer?

How do you eat an elephant/finish the dissertation? One Small piece at a time; from
In this blog we’ll break the elephant (dissertation) into smaller pieces so that it doesn’t seem so overwhelming.

Whether you’re a Walden University Dr. D Mentee or you found this resource by accident, let’s do this!

~Dr. Darci