Some pinteresting visual ways to curate information in #HigherEd


What is Pinterest?

Pinterest is a social bookmarking site that allows users to visually share and discover new interests by posting (known as ‘pinning’) images or videos to their own or others’ boards (i.e. a collection of ‘pins,’ usually with a common theme or topic). A pin is a visual bookmark. Users can browse what other users have pinned, like and comment, or re-pin to one of their own boards. They can also choose to follow individual or collections of boards.

By clicking on the pinned image you will be taken back to the site it came from. This is an important aspect as it connects the image with the creator. You may also upload your own images. Pins and boards can be shared via social networks.

Examples of Pinterest boards I have created can be found at:

Boards include collections of infographics, innovative business cards and CVs, interesting books as well as topics related to the subjects I teach such as Digital Marketing and the Internet of Things. There are also a few personal interest boards.

You can choose to leave your Pinterest boards as public or private where only the people you invite can see them.


Using Pinterest for Learning and Teaching

Pinterest is a useful way to organise and bookmark information you have found that you want to share with your students. Equally it can be a good tool for your students to use to organise their own learning.

  • Campus Tour: This can give an insight to what the university looks like and provide a virtual tour of the key facilities. International students for example don’t always get the opportunity to visit Open Days in person.
  • History of the University: Sharing photos of the buildings, staff, students and events. Pictures of famous alumni could also be a focus along with information about the course they took and what they are doing now.
  • Tutor Board: Upload photos of the course team with details of the subjects they teach and research interests.
  • Icebreaker activities: Members of the class could contribute a photos and brief description to a shared  theme board – this could be an object they relate to, their favourite food, or hobby.
  • Student resources: This could be links to the Careers Centre, Alumni Association, Student Support and other support services.
  • Reading Lists: Pinning images of the books provides a visual book collection. The library could contribute with research tips, note taking advice and referencing.
  • Research Projects: This is where students or tutors can curate and recommend useful links to resources and literature relating to the project.
  • Visual Showcase of Student Work: An opportunity to share individual or group work and get feedback from peers.
  • Student Blogs: Creating a board to pin each of your students’ blogs to provide a shared space everyone can quickly access and read the blogs.
  • Field trip storyboard: A visual way to share photographs along with images of graphs and tables.
  • Events Calendar: A visual showcase of forthcoming events and collection of photos taken at the events. This could include for example Guest Lectures, Degree Shows or Careers Fairs
  • Inspiring Quotes: This could be a curation both students and staff contribute to. These could be pinned from an associated website, or ‘quote cards’ could be created as images adding the referenced source of the quote.

In addition to pinning images you can also pin videos and Slideshare presentations.

About Sue Beckingham

A National Teaching Fellow, Educational Developer and Principal Lecturer in Computing with a research interest in the use of social media in higher education.
This entry was posted in Pinterest. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s