Sections in this page: [Preliminaries] - [Advice on contents, topics and style] - [Technical help: how to...?] - [FAQ]
In order to be able to post an entry, you need to register with the blog. All BA2 and BA3 students have received an invitation via e-mail, and if you follow the instructions in this e-mail you should manage to get registered as a blog contributor.
We insist that you register with your real, full name, and not with a nickname. Needless to say, if you fail to comply with this, all hell will break loose! ;-)
From the so-called 'Blogger dashboard', you select ‘germ@namur':
This brings you to the germ@namur publication area where you see a list of recent posts and from where you can select 'create post' to start writing and publishing a blog entry (see the section 'Technical help' further down this site):
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It is absolutely essential that you read and reread your entry before posting it online. Think critically about the form and content of what you have written, and ask the opinion of one or even several fellow students. You are, at least potentially, writing for the whole world to see, so please please please avoid all too obvious spelling, grammar and vocabulary mistakes!
There is no need to rush out and submit an entry to get it over with; it is better that you wait until you have really encountered something noteworthy to share with your fellow students and your teachers than to just post anything so as to meet the course requirements.
A ‘blog' or weblog is essentially about providing commentary or news about a particular subject with reference to other websites. Anything you submit will thus normally contain at least one link to a website related to the topic you discuss – or indeed, an interesting website or set of websites may constitute the topic you discuss. Ideally, you should try to include links unobtrusively : avoid using sentences like “you can find the website here ”, using instead properly contentful sentences in which some words happen to be linked (e.g. “ As Geoff Pullum explains in his excellent entry on the highly recommended Language Log,…”).
You are entirely free as to the choice of topic you want to raise and provide links for – an interesting film, tv programme, website, cd; the new generation of iPods; fun videos (in English) to be found on the internet; websites related to assignments about e.g. corpus linguistics, Shakespeare, the history of English, etc.; and so on. Whatever you think is interesting is likely to interest at least some other people as well. The entries currently available on the blog already give an idea of the wide variety of possible topics.
Some blogs serve more as personal online diaries than as gateways to interesting information on the web. While this is not germ@namur's primary aim, it would be nice to hear from the BA3 students away on an Erasmus exchange how they are getting on in Flanders, the Netherlands, Germany, or Ireland, so these students in particular should feel free to tell us a little bit about their lives abroad. (Here again, providing links to relevant websites should not be a problem – if all else fails, there's always the Wikipedia entry on the country or city you are staying in.)
If you are using a difficult word which you think not all your fellow students will understand you can always link it to the Cambridge or Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary online (this too is illustrated in a number of entries, for instance with the word 'eulogy' in this entry).
Blogs are also commonly used to post pictures on – indeed, there are a few such examples on the blog already. Germ@namur can also be used to post the occasional picture (for instructions, see the 'Technical help' section below). However, there is the technical restriction that only one picture can be embedded within one entry. If you have a whole series of pictures, for instance related to some social event (such as the Souper Germa), please select just one picture which you really like a lot and post just this one, along with a link to your own blog or website where more pictures can then be found.
Apart from independent entries, of which we expect to see (at least) one per term per BA2 or BA3 student, you can of course also post comments to other people's entries.
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Once you have signed in to Blogger and have selected the germ@namur blog, select the big blue 'Create new post' button in the top left part of the screen:
You then arrive at the text editor where you can enter your text, add links to it, apply formatting (bold type, italics, etc.), embed pictures or videos, and so on:
Let's look at this in greater detail to see what the most important buttons and menu options are for:
Your title goes in the title box, of course, and your text in the text box. You can apply bold or italic type to selected text using the b and i buttons respectively. Similarly, selected text is linked by clicking the 'create hyperlink' button. You then get a pop-up window prompting you to enter the URL of the website you want to link the selected text to:
Once you've pressed OK the software will automatically have added the relevant html tags. Don't let this confuse you -- just ignore it, and don't change anything in what was added.
Using the 'insert picture' button you can embed a picture in your entry. See also the following help topic.
You can choose between an 'html' view or a 'compose' view. You can just leave this as it is. What is useful is the 'preview' button: once you've finished your entry you can see what the text will look like with formatting and web links in place.
When you're all done, you select the big orange 'Publish post' button to publish your entry online. Please wait until the software tells you the upload is completed.
If you have to leave your blog entry unfinished for some reason but want to save your work online to return to it and complete it later, you can use the 'Save draft' button. Note that this will not publish your entry, but will store it online in the list of posts you get under the 'Edit posts' view (see screenshot at the top of this website).
When you click the 'insert picture' button from Blogger's text editor (see the second to last screenshot above), you are prompted to either upload a picture from your computer (click the 'Browse...' button), or insert a link to a web address where the picture you want to link to is hosted (type in the URL):
Using the lay-out options in the lower half of this window, you can determine where the image will be placed and what size it will have. Don't select 'large' as size, as this doesn't combine well with the overall lay-out of the blog.
There are different ways of embedding a YouTube video into a blog entry. One way is to register with YouTube first and then submit your Blogger login and password to YouTube so as to be able to blog onto germ@namur from without leaving the YouTube website. This method will not be further explained here as there is another, more direct way that does not require you to register with YouTube.
When you have selected a YouTube video you would like to include in your blog entry, what you do is select the full contents of the "Embed" window next to the YouTube video -- this is a fairly long line containing html tags and a web address -- and copy and paste this into your blog entry. Needless to say this works best if you have both the YouTube and Blogger sites pulled up at the same time.
Here is a screenshot showing the location of the 'Embed' window on a YouTube video site:
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BA2 and BA3 students are expected to contribute one entry per term (so two per year) for their Proficiency course (Stylistique et maîtrise de la langue anglaise II / III). The deadline for the first semester is 15 December; for the second semester it is 6 April.
BA1 students do not have to contribute entries to the blog, but if they would like to be able to they can contact Mr Romero-Muñoz () to receive an invitation e-mail. Note that anyone can leave comments to existing entries without having to register.
Your account will have to be deleted and a new invitation sent out. Please contact Mr Romero-Muñoz () for this. Register again, and this time please make sure you don't forget your password again!
Your current invitation will have to be cancelled and a new one sent out. Please contact Mr Romero-Muñoz () for this. An explanation as to why you have neglected to register so far would be much appreciated.
Something mysterious went wrong. Your account will have to be deleted and a new invitation sent out. Please contact Mr Romero-Muñoz () for this.
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© FUNDP [Unité d'anglais] 2006. Page created and maintained by Lieven Vandelanotte .