An interactive social media workshop using Lego® Serious Play®


  • Kiu Sum University of Westminster
  • Sue Beckingham Sheffield Hallam University
  • Suzanne Faulkner University of Strathclyde
  • Deborah Baff The Association for Learning Technology



Lego® Serious Play®, Snapchat, Flipgrid, Padlet, Social Media


Through a #SocMedHE19 conference workshop, the aim was to provide a supportive and open way to discuss the use of social media and to explore any concerns or barriers raised; as well as to gain insights into their professional use of different social media in learning and teaching. A generic overview of Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat and Flipgrid were given, drawing on examples of our own learning, teaching and sharing practices in our local institutions. We then wanted to engage the delegates (staff and students) to explore these specific tools themselves and consider how they could be utilised in their own practice. An innovative approach was taken to facilitate and capture this discussion using Lego® Serious Play®, Padlet and Flipgrid. This paper considers how effective this interactive approach was and to what extent it encouraged open discussion about the perceived enablers and barriers to using this selection of social media tools. 

Key findings highlight the benefits of using social media tools in a classroom setting, enabling participants to increase understanding and confidence of each available tool and exposing them to utilising it in a pedagogical way. The workshop enabled participants to connect with one another, expanding their network and to share potential ideas for learning and teaching. The need for ongoing support for colleagues who are not familiar with the approaches used and implementation in a classroom setting was strongly recommended by participants.

Author Biographies

Kiu Sum, University of Westminster

Kiu Sum is a Doctoral Researcher at the University of Westminster with a research interest in workplace nutrition and nutritional behaviour focusing on hospital doctors. Away from her academic study, Kiu is heavily involved in a number of student engagement and pedagogy research projects (e.g. Students as Co-Creators), with topics focusing on assessment and feedback as well as the use of mobile technologies. She is also the Student Officer at RAISE Network.

Sue Beckingham, Sheffield Hallam University

Sue Beckingham is a National Teaching Fellow, Principal Lecturer in Business Information Systems and Technology with a lead role in LTA. She's also a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a Fellow of the Staff and Educational Development Association, Certified Member of ALT and a Certified Management and Business Educator. Her research interests include social media and she writes a blog called Social Media for Learning. An advocate of informal learning, she is a co-founder of the international #LTHEchat 'Learning and Teaching in Higher Education Twitter Chat'.

Suzanne Faulkner, University of Strathclyde

Suzanne Faulkner is a Teaching Fellow in Prosthetics and Orthotics, within the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, she is also a facilitator trained in the LEGO® Serious Play® (LSP) methodology. Suzanne is passionate about enhancing the student experience by focusing on improving student engagement, utilising social media in learning and teaching and incorporating playful learning. She has been nominated and shortlisted for several teaching excellence awards and is currently undertaking an MSc in Advanced Academic Studies, evaluating the use of LSP to enhance participation of non-native speakers of English in group work activities.

Deborah Baff, The Association for Learning Technology

Debbie Baff is Membership and Professional Development Manager for the Association for Learning Technology and in her third year as a PhD Student in E Research and Technology Enhanced Learning at Lancaster University. Debbie is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Certified Online Learning Facilitator. Her research interests include online and social learning, open educational practice and community engagement. Debbie is a proud member of the Global OER Graduate Network (GO-GN) and Secretary and Co-Chair of the ALT Open Education Special Interest Group (#openedsig) and is an active volunteer across many social media and education community networks including #ALTC, #OER, #LTHEchat #BYOD4L and #SOCMEDHE19.