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Social Media Doesn’t Help in the Classroom

A new study suggests use of social media in the classroom had little effect on building connections or social capital among students.

The research, conducted by the Lab for Social Computing at Rochester Institute of Technology, examined the use of course management systems and discussion groups to enhance classroom instruction, improve communication and connections between students and translate the benefits of social media interaction to the classroom.

The results indicate that the educational use of social media may not counteract poor social connections that are seen in face-to-face communication or elicit the same impacts seen in the use of social media sites such as MySpace and Facebook.

“Many social media advocates have argued that the use of these tools in classroom settings could greatly enhance interaction and learning and assist shyer, more reserved students in becoming more involved, as has been seen in other online environments,” says Susan Barnes, associate director of the Lab for Social Computing and the leader of the research team.

“However, our findings show that the incorporation of social media had no measurable impact on social connections, to the point that students did not consider other members of the class to be part of their social network.”

The team next plans on expanding the research to include multiple educational formats with different social media applications to measure how social connections differ from the classroom setting.

The team ultimately hopes to provide data that will help educational planners create better social media formats that have a greater impact on student social connections.

“The issues surrounding poor social network construction within online educational environments points to greater opportunities to examine how technology and mediated software can be better designed to suit the types of communication and interactions desired by our students,” says Christopher Egert, assistant professor of informatics, interactive games and media and member of the team.

Source: Rochester Institute of Technology

Social Media Doesn’t Help in the Classroom

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2015). Social Media Doesn’t Help in the Classroom. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 19, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2010/05/06/social-media-doesnt-help-in-the-classroom/13553.html

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 6 Oct 2015
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 6 Oct 2015
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.