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Post It Pearls initiative is moving from Twitter to Instagram

Michelle Lin, MD |

Post It Pearls on InstagramMy 2017 new year’s resolution was to create brief educational pearls on shift called Post It Pearls, which I published to Twitter. I have increasingly noticed that many of my target learners are not on Twitter. They are, however, on Instagram. So this year’s resolution is to test out how whether Post It Pearls would reach more learners and thus be more impactful on my Instagram account (@MichelleLinMD).

Why move to Instagram?

  1. The platform is more visual and potentially more engaging.
  2. It is an underutilized online space for health professions education.
  3. More widespread adoption amongst millennial group than Twitter.
  4. No character limit

What is the down side?

  1. There is only one major negative side. The URL hyperlinks in the posts are not clickable. You need to click a few more times to access links. Hyperlinks are crucial to any educational platform as I am always wary when people share educational pearls without references or links to support their statement. As a general principle, I would not want anyone blindly trusting any of my (or anyone’s) educational tips.

Hacking the URL link issue

  • We have created unique pages on ALiEM.com which serve as Instagram bio links. On these pages, you can now visit links by clicking on the images.
    1. ALiEMteam
    2. MichelleLinMD
    3. DMonetteMD
  • I am also piloting the concept of QR codes in the images, in case you want to screenshot the code and later read using your QR reader of choice. I use the free QRafter app (no financial disclosures) to upload the screenshot. Bonus: The app now has catalogued all the links that I want to read for later referencing. [A Post It Pearl Instagram post with a QR code in case you want to test it out.]

Call to Action

  • Come join me in the #PostItPearls movement to go to where the learners are. Be sure to include the hashtag or tag me (@MichelleLinMD) so that I can find you.


Author information

Michelle Lin, MD

ALiEM Founder and CEO
Professor and Digital Innovation Lab Director
Department of Emergency Medicine
University of California, San Francisco

The post Post It Pearls initiative is moving from Twitter to Instagram appeared first on ALiEM.

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