Friday, 25 January 2008

Is there a place for Ebay in education?

I spoke to Martin several weeks ago regarding the college having an Ebay account. He has suggested I put the idea out here it so that anyone can comment. Ebay is a tool I use regularly and have been very successful with and if anyone is interested in finding out more on ideas for educational use please click on the comment link below and leave a message.

Ideas for use?
  • I thought about Business first as I remember my son was involved in a business trade/young enterprise project, where students had to create a company, design, create and sell a product. Ebay would be ideal for this as the audience would be so much greater. Students would also have to consider things like postage costs and selling fees in their price too, all helps with numeracy and planning.
  • Hair and Beauty - well, you are selling a product, maybe there are local people who don't know about your salons, maybe they would bid on a "Buy-it-Now" basis for treatments as your prices are so good.
  • Routes florists - Similar thoughts.
  • Tutor groups might like to take on selling some items for a charity etc....

Anyway I'm not going to say much more on this other than please comment below - click on the comments link below and follow the instructions on screen. If you haven't got an account select anonymous. You could also complete the poll - top right of the screen to let me know what you think of the article.


Jon said...

It could be useful in those situations.
I think there would have to be careful control over access to the account, to prevent abuse or confusion (e.g. each of three people thinking someone else is doing some task). It might be wiser for each dept. with a use for an e-bay a/c to have their own, so a small number of staff from each would be the only users with the password, etc. One College-wide a/c could lead to too many people having access for proper management.

mxs said...


Really interesting post, and I like the idea of using ebay in the college.

The world is changing and we shouldn't ignore the fact that many of our staff and even more of our students are regualr ebay users, both as buyers and sellers.

As well as the curriculum use that you mention, I also see ebay as a vast resource of potential suppliers to the college, often at significantly cheaper rates that are otherwise available to us.

You may know that I plan to roll out Purchasing Cards across the college this year - these could be used with appropriate controls to pay for items by PayPal.

I appreciate and sgree with the risks mentioned by jon above, but I think with careful controls these can be mitigated, and perhaps longer term there would be more risk through us not embracing such innovations.

Mark Sellis

Wendy said...

Thanks Mark. I know some college even allow students to pay fees via Paypal.

Anonymous said...

Hi Wendy, I am a Blog virgin. I thought I would give this a go. I tried this once before but it went wrong.

Jonny said...

Ebay is interesing from a business and Marketing point of view. There is an art to selling on ebay - you could probably sell just about anything on there if you know what you're doing. Some businesses are really profiting out of it, others could be doing a lot better if they had more knowledge and experience of ebay and ebay users.

There will probably be a course or qualification on 'Business and Ebay' soon, just like McDonald's is now offering diplomas.

Anonymous said...

I do think it is a good idea but my reservation would be that students then spend huge amounts of time looking at other items and we have involved them in a bidding process some can't afford and would not follow through. I suppose it could be controlled by the teacher but I am really not sure.
Lynne Pearson