Role of social media on education
The role of social media has evolved a lot over the last decade in all aspects of our lives, such as school, work and personal lives. I completed my diploma in nursing at Langara College 12 years ago; at this stage social media such as twitter, facebook, and YouTube was not used in classroom setting in the nursing program. Some forms of media which was used in class for teaching was videos, flip charts, over head projectors, and face to face communication. Some educators were just getting familiar with the computer systems. Even though we were expected to use computers to complete our assignment, the expectation was to print out our assignments and hand them in to our instructors, rather than emailing them to our instructors. Once I enrolled at VCC to complete my BSN and the PIDP, I was shocked to see the increase of social media used by teachers and students in class and out of classroom to complete projects and assignments. When I went to my first class, I saw students using technology such as laptops, iphones and ipads to take notes. After my first class I rushed out to get a laptop, because I recognized it was the most efficient tool to use to take notes during class. Instructors are also using media such as YouTube clips to enhance learning and to keep students engaged during class, rather than just standing in front of class and giving a lecture. Power point slides are also used to get educational information across to students. In the ethics class which I took about a year, we had a group assignment of creating a blog, because I was too tech savvy at that point another classmate created the blog and I contributed by adding content into the blog. Now that I have created a blog on my own, I understand what a blog is and the use of it. An experience which reminds me of the increase of media use in education is the lab setting in nursing program; I was also stunned to see computer programmed manikins which are used to test student’s knowledge on the spot. Instructors program the manikins to have a particular health problem and students are to demonstrate their communication skills, assessment skills and knowledge to safely care for the manikin as if it were a real patient in the hospital. The lab settings have technologically advanced from the labs in which I practiced my skills on 12 years ago. Watching the video on “Nursing Education in second life” reminds me of the similarity between the manikins used in the lab setting in the nursing program at VCC and the virtual reality setting.
Social media such as twitter and facebook are used readily in schools to get information out to students, teachers and the general public, quickly and efficiently. It’s a great way of communicating with each other as a group rather than individually, which saves time for the instructors and students. Facebook and twitter are also great tools for group discussions, communication and interacting back and forth amongst each other. I personally use facebook and Skype to communicate with friends and family and now that I have an iphone I can use these tools more readily and instantly rather than going home to use them.
From taking the “enhanced media course”, I learned the importance of using a blog for my work to keep a record of changes of policy and procedures, any educational course and in services which I attended. While creating the blog, I got more comfortable using social media, such as YouTube, Facebook and twitter.
The pros of using social media for education are:
-easy for generation Y to use this tool, because they are already comfortable using social media on a daily basis-educators can use current news feeds, follow public figures to engage conversation and use them as teaching tools in classroo
-it can also enhance engagement of students who are shy to put hands up in class
-it’s a great communication tool that can be used for sending out reminders, posting homework and organizing projects and events
-students entering the workforce can also use social networking sites to network and find employment
-teaches student responsibility and hold them accountable if social media is used incorrectly
-students are also forced to learn issues around privacy policies.
Cons of using social media for education are:
-it’s seen as a distraction for students in class, it disrupts the learning process.
-cyber bullying is also seen as a negative impact of social media
-limiting face to face communication
-schools and teachers need to keep up to date with the changes
-inappropriate content sharing or exposure is seen as an issue as well
-financial burden on the parents to provide their child with the devices