Web 2.0 Gizmos and Gadgets

Many new, FREE web tools are emerging that allow for new approaches to fostering interpersonal interaction in the online learning environment. While many of these new Web 2.0 tools are designed for integration within blogs or other social networking applications, they may also be embedded within a learning management system like Blackboard or Moodle to extend its existing collaborative capabilities. This session will explore various free Web 2.0 tools and discuss how these new free tools can be integrated within or utilized in conjunction with a learning management system of choice.

Collections of Links

Session Tag

Categories of Tools

  • Blogging
  • Bookmarking
  • Collaborative Authorship / Wikis
  • Concept Maps / Diagrams
  • Maps
  • Mashups
  • News
  • Notes
  • Photos
  • Presentations
  • Reference
  • RSS
  • Search
  • Social Networks
  • Slidecasts
  • Video Conferencing
  • Videos

See Examples of Web 2.0 Integrated in Blackboard

  1. Go to http://webcourses.niu.edu

  2. Login with the following:

    username: su000##
    password: pw000##

  3. Click the course "Web 2.0 Gizmos & Gadgets

More Info

Session Rationale

What is Web 2.0?

What is RSS?

Introductions to Web 2.0 Technologies

Web 2.0 Technology Concept Diagrams

Web 2.0 Tools

All examples provided below are FREE tools that can either be embedded within a leanring management system or used in conjunction with a learning management system.


  • Blogger
    free blogging host/tool powered by Google
  • Edublogs
    free blogs for educators|
  • Tumblr
    basic blogging tool; creates RSS feed of misc. items (text, photos, quotes, links, chat, video) | sample |
  • Uniblogs
    free blogs for university and college students
  • ElggSpaces
    hosted Elgg service for walled-garden blogging


  • del.icio.us
    free, easy-to-use social bookmarking service
  • diigo
    social annotation: seamless integration of social bookmarking, web highlighter, sticky-note & clipping
  • Listible!
    social bookmarking / listing combined with ranking / voting of resources
  • Scholar
    free social bookmarking tool from Blackboard
  • StumbleUpon
    discover and bookmark sites, videos, pictures and more — all according to your interests

Collaborative Authorship / Wikis

Concept Maps / Diagrams

  • bubbl
    free web application that lets you brainstorm online
  • Gliffy
    draw and share / embed create diagrams | examples |
  • MindMeister
    online mind mapping tool supporting all the standard features of a classic mind mapping tools; allows unlimited simultaneous users
  • Mindomo
    Web-based mind mapping tool, delivering the capabilities of desktop mind mapping software in a Web browser - with no complex software to install or maintain.



  • Yahoo! Pipes
    powerful composition tool to aggregate, manipulate, and mashup content from around the web.


  • Google News
    search and browse news sources; create custom news RSS feeds
  • Yahoo! News
    aggregated news feeds from Yahoo!


  • NoteMesh
    free service that allows college students in the same classes to share notes with each other


  • Flickr
    upload photos to share online or embed; RSS feeds for photo collections
  • Picasa Web Albums
    online photo sharing, hosted by Google

Presentations / Slidecasts


  • CiteULike
    free online service to organize academic papers
  • Connotea
    free online reference management for clinicians and scientists
  • EndNoteWeb
    free web-based research tool
  • Zotero
    free, easy-to-use Firefox extension for collecting, managing, and citing your research sources


  • Feed2JS
    free service for building javascript command for embedding the contents of an RSS feed in a website
  • WebRSS
    free service for generating code to publish RSS feeds to your site


Social Networks

  • EduSpaces
    social network for those interested in all aspects of education
  • Elgg
    open source social networking platform allowing community and individual blogging in either a public or a walled garden environment | c4lpt.net | uticked |
  • Edmodo
    private microblogging environment for education
  • Ning
    discover and create your own social network | Classroom 2.0 |

Video Conferencing

  • ooVoo
    free video conferencing with up to 6 people simultaneously
  • Skype
    free VoIP calling and one-to-one video chatting


  • Google Video
    free online video viewing and sharing service; videos can be downloaded for viewing offline
  • Seesmic
    asynchronous video conversations
  • TeacherTube
    online video sharing and viewing service oriented toward education
  • Ustream
    platform that provides live interactive video for everyone; anyone with a camera and an Internet connection can use Ustream to broadcast to a global audience.
  • Viddler
    upload, enhance, and share video
  • YouTube
    free online video viewing and sharing service

Last Updated: 5/19/2009

Cite this session/handout as:
Rhode, J. F. (2009, May 20). Web 2.0 gizmos and gadgets. Presented at Faculty Summer Institute on Teaching Technologies, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.