Medium is more than a standard blogging site. It is a publishing platform that allows users to write and publish their own content and share it with like-minded people. Medium has more interaction than most blogging platforms. It can support communities that build off of each other’s ideas. Medium also features algorithms that help users discover posts they may be interested in. Everything also connects with Twitter and other social networks for easy sharing and discovery.
Medium can allow a teacher to create a class publication and invite students as contributors. Students are then prompted to write their articles and submit them to the publication. The teacher acts as editor, approving each post before it goes live.
Medium is a great way for students to present their work to a larger audience outside the walls of their school. Students become active participants in larger conversations. Students realize they too have something important to add. It can be a transformative moment the first time a student sees a response to their work from the author of their textbook. Medium allows for that kind of networking to happen.
In addition to class publications, students can choose to make posts public on their personal account, which allows students to build their own portfolio of writing. Teachers in different classes can ask students to tag posts with unique tags, making posts easier to find and add to class publications. This allows a student’s work to exist both in their own personal portfolio, as well as a publication managed by a teacher.
In higher education, instructors may wish to ask students to identify a publication that aligns with their topic and submit to an already existing Medium publication. This allows the students to learn how to submit a draft and interact with editors outside of a classroom. It is a good way for students to gain real-world experience and become a published author.
Medium has excellent writing and layout tools, making it very simple to embed images, video or other content from the web. Medium uses a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) format that encourages creativity even in students who may normally not enjoy writing assignments. Also, because students are writing for an authentic audience, they tend to write differently, putting more effort and thought into what they present.
Medium, as a community, is full of excellent writers, who often generate thought-provoking long-form content. Medium contains writings of many thought leaders. Introducing students to a community where they can search and find content that interest them is another benefit to using Medium in the classroom.