Using Periscope to teach wannabe Network Engineers

Smith, Andrew (2016). Using Periscope to teach wannabe Network Engineers. In: ALT Annual Conference 2016: Connect, Collaborate, Create, 6-8 Sep 2016, Warwick University.



Periscope appearing, early 2015 and owned by Twitter is a focussed ‘live streaming’ app. The CIsco Networking team at the Open University, armed with smart phone and a tripod, shared a series of pre-announced short single subject technical sessions covering specialist topics within the domain of internet routing technologies.

Adapting mLearning and creating a paradigm for student motivation – the activity follows the notion that “Newer technologies, such as social networking Web sites, instant messaging, blogs, and Web sites with user created content all have the potential to be used to enhance student engagement and educational outcomes” (Junco and Timm 2008, pp118).

The @OUCisco social media channel is already being used as for asynchronous social media teaching (Smith 2015) – the use of Periscope allows for an immediate synchronous following and post-broadcast viewing for up to twenty-four hours. After which the saved video is easily shared on alternate platforms.

Varying delivery times and days, each periscope session is tweeted in advance with info graphic and date/times. reaching the pre-existing @OUCisco social media community on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+, having an estimated reach of between 2000 participants at any given moment.

Each subject/session attracted over a twenty-four hour window around 100-140 viewers with over 90% watching synchronously. Some occasionally used the inbuilt chat facilities, the majority observed. Some tweeted, others retweeted or favorited the sessions.

This short presentation explores the use of Periscope as a learning technology, the engagement methodology as well as reflecting on the impact and evaluating the student experience. By attending this session, you will be able to ‘take away’ one way that Periscope could be used in teaching, reaching students and supporting remote learning.


Junco, R., & Timm, D. (2008). Using emerging technologies to enhance student engagement. New directions for student services. Issue #124. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Smith, A (2015), Creating a pre-planned social media teaching experience. Session 872, Association of Learning Technologies Conference, University of Manchester, 8th to 10th September 2015

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