Additional Tools

Though not directly supported at this time, CTL provides general information on collaborative online tools and services such as Wikis, Blogs and RSS aggregators. These tools are all potentially very useful for enhancing online learning, and are generally easily acquired through outside sources for free or at minimal cost.



A wiki (wĭk'ē) is a collaborative web application that allows users to add and edit web content. Wikipedia is a well-known example: Wiki also refers to the collaborative software used to create such a website. Faculty can use wikis to encourage collaborative activities among their students. Many are publicly available, and can be found searching “free wiki” on the Internet.



A blog (short for weblog) is a website that enables users to instantly publish ideas, images, and links for other people to view. Blogging can be an effective journaling, collaboration and communication tool for small groups of people. Many blogs are freely available: is one such example, or you may find others by simply searching "free blogs" on the Internet.



RSS comes in a few formats but is best known as Really Simple Syndication. RSS feeds are titles or brief summaries of web content with links to the expanded content. Some of the most common providers of RSS feeds are news sites, bloggers and podcasters. You will know a site has an RSS feed if you see an icon similar to this: RSS icon You can subscribe to an RSS feed with a news aggregator application (e.g. RSS Owl), online aggregator, or directly with a browser with built-in RSS integration, such as: Firefox, Netscape 8, Safari, and Opera 8. To look for feeds by topic try the RSS Network at