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Marking Up the Web: Diigo’s Social-Annotation Tool

Jim Moulton

Technology Integration and Project-Based Learning Consultant
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A few months back, a high school history teacher introduced me to a great Web-collaboration tool called Diigo (Digest of Internet Information, Groups, and Other Stuff). By creating a Diigo account, you can visit Web sites and mark them up by tagging sticky notes on the page with a simple drag-and-drop procedure. Imagine being able to place a tag on an image, a specific line of a poem, or a statistic on a page of data.

From your Diigo account page, you can also create groups that allow others to see the tags you place on Web pages. Visitors can even add comments to your sticky notes.

Diigo definitely has a place in education. Envision a group of students working on a Web-based research project: Not only can they cite the pages they've used, they can also have conversations about resources on the very pages they are discussing. And to take it a step further, the students' teacher can join the group, view how the students are using the Web resources, and comment on their note-taking -- right on the sticky notes. As the site states, "Diigo is about Social Annotation."

Come on! It's digital, so you can't break it, and, yes, they want you to play! A Sandbox feature lets you test the program by first installing the Diigo toolbar. I'm using it on Firefox on a MacBook running OSX 10.4.9. It is available for other machines and browsers; to view the Help menu, which is quite complete, visit the site's Help page.

Let me know what you think of the program. And if you start using Diigo innovatively with students, how about inviting me to join your group? I'd like to see what you're up to.

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Jim Moulton

Technology Integration and Project-Based Learning Consultant

Comments (5) Sign in or register to comment Follow Subscribe to comments via RSS

Jim Burke's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Wow . . .this is neat. And to think that it has been out for a year, and this is the first time I've heard of it!

But . . . . how the heck does one pronounce Diigo or diigolet?

Maggie Tsai's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Diigo is pronounced "dee'go" and it's an abbreviation for "Digest of Internet Information, Groups and Other stuff." Founded by Dr. Ren, previously a EECS professor at UC Berkeley, Diigo arose out of personal needs to read and digest large amount of information online and the need to share thoughts and interact on those information.

We've been focused mostly on R&D thus far. Glad to hear more and more educators are starting to discover Diigo, and explore interesting possibilities to incorporate Diigo into their curriculum. We'd love to connect with educators and experts who may have insight into how Diigo might be used and what additional features might be useful for education.

Jim Burke's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Thank you, Maggie, for the pronunciation and information. :)


Jane's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Having just learned of Diigo, I am considering many possibiities for use with business and finance students in Grades 11-12 at an Ohio career-technical school. With the vast amounts of information currently in online news about our economic situation, I am hoping this tool will help students organize their findings, make notes for team members, and pull together their projects. Stay tuned.

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