When I began the process of gathering a list of standards for content curation, I first needed to comprehend the meaning of curation. According to Content Curation: A Beginner’s Guide To Curating Content, “It’s adding your voice (and value) to a handpicked collection of content. Gathered from a variety of sources, around a specific topic, that you publish and share with your fans. Wherever they may be” (2018). Reading the definition was a good start, but it wasn’t until I began building my list that I really understood what curation was about.
When I think of curating, a museum exhibit comes to mind. The process of curating content is similar. Knowing the audience and hand-picking high-quality, up-to-date content that matches well with the topic are all very important steps to curating. But it does not end there. Organizing and distributing content on relevant sites is just as important. Once shared, discussing content and assessing the needs of the users should be done to follow through to help improve the curation process.
I have learned many valuable steps to creating a curated checklist. Below is my criteria that will serve as a tool for assessing the quality and value of an education-related curated topic.
Standards for Quality Curation
1. Discover your Specialty
Before you can begin to curate content, think about what interests and inspires you. What is your specialty? Subrahmanyam shares, “Content curators provide a customized, vetted selection of the best and most relevant resources on a very specific topic or theme (Kanter, 2011)” (2019). The content curated needs to have a focus on your interests and involvements. What do you want to share with the world?
___ Is the topic related to your field of study?
2. Be Seen as an Expert
According to Content Curation: A Beginner’s Guide To Curating Content, “Curation content is one aspect of your stay-on-top-of-mind campaign for being seen as an expert in your field” (2018). It is important that people look to you as someone who understands the type of content that is important to share.
___ Does the content shared connect well to your expertise?
3. Assemble Sites to Stream
Once a topic is chosen, arrange social media sites to stream content to curate. “It can take the form of an RSS feed, links posted on blogs, social media feeds, or an online news mashup like the ECDaily, Videos, articles, pictures, songs, or any piece of online digital content that can be shared can be curated” (Subrahmanyam, 2019). This will help gather multiple sources of content to curate.
___Are social media sites assembled to collect resourceful content?
4. Needs of the Audience
According to Barnett, “The most important part of content curation is understanding the needs of an audience” (n.d.). It is important to take the time to understand what the audience is looking for. Your audience might not have much time to devote to looking up resources, so it is important to make sure the content is what they are seeking.
___ Does the content connect well with your audience?
5. Choose High-Quality Content
Collecting high-quality content is the name of the game. Make sure the content is collected from reliable and helpful sources. Quality newsletters, organizations, PLN’s and social media sites like Twitter lists can have quality accessible sources.
___Is the information reliable?
6. Use the Latest Information
Make sure the information gathered is recent and up-to-date. Using resources that are recently published will be more helpful to users to apply the content gathered.
___Is the content up-to-date?
7. Inviting Content
Does the content draw the user in? Is it engaging enough that the user wants to keep looking through and interacting with the content?
___ Does the content appeal to the user?
8. Evaluate the Content
Barnett shares, “…curation is manual; it requires a considered human opinion” (n.d.). There are seven benchmarks to consider when curating. They are (1) useful for the field; (2) not too long, not too short; (3) original; (4) user-friendly such as mobile-ready and very few ads; (5) easy to view and navigate; (6) evidence-based; and (7) is not trying to sell something or does not an agenda (Barnett, n.d.).
___Is the content of high quality?
9. Add Reports and Reviews
When finding content, add an introduction, summary, viewpoint and/or a review of the source.
___ Have reviews been added to the curated content?
10. Publish Wisely
Presenting content to users in a meaningful way is critical. Users will be drawn into the learning system when content is presented to attract users. Sort and organize information that makes sense to the readers.
___ Is the organization of content arranged in a meaningful way?
11. Distribute Content
Once the content has been curated, deliver the information. There are several sites to help users receive valuable content that has been curated. Scoop.it!, pearltrees, LessonPaths, and EduClipper are a few sites to use for content curation.
___ Can everyone access the curated content?
12. Give Credit
After gathering and sorting the curated content, give credit where credit is due. Use proper citation format.
___Is the curated content cited properly?
With such a well-organized group of content, it is important to share the curated content on more than one site. Share with your PLN’s and social media sites such as blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
___Is the curated content shared on a PLN or social media site?
Inspire a conversation, join in a comment thread, and engage others to continue the discussion in class or on social media.
___Are there opportunities to comment and discuss the curated content?
By monitoring the comments and discussions, the curator can analyze the quality and usability of the content.
___Is the content useful for the user?
___Are the user comments insightful?
Barnett, K. (n.d.). 6 steps for quality content curation. Retrieved from https://learn.filtered.com/thoughts/6-steps-for-quality-content-curation
Content Curation: A Beginner’s Guide To Curating Content. (2018, October 24). Hootsuite Social Media Management. https://blog.hootsuite.com/beginners-guide-to-content-curation/
Corinne Weisgerber. Building Thought Leadership through Content Curation [Technology]. https://www.slideshare.net/corinnew/building-thought-leadership-through-content-curation?ref=https://edtech.mrooms.org/mod/page/view.php?id=127509
Corinne Weisgerber. Re-envisioning Modern Pedagogy: Educators as Curators [Education]. https://www.slideshare.net/corinnew/reenvisioning-modern-pedagogy-educators-as-curators-11879841/21-Info_MoleculesA_curator_is_an
Joyce Seitzinger. When Educators Become Curators—Keynote slides #moothr12 [Education]. https://www.slideshare.net/catspyjamas/when-educators-become-curators-keynote-slides-moothr12/47-Step_3_Select_what_to
Subrahmanyam, V. (2019, June 28). Approaches for Curation of Open Educational Resources. ResearchGate. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/334085214_Approaches_for_Curation_of_Open_Educational_Resources