University students’ use of social
media and digital devices: insights
into their personal learning
environments
Palitha E...
Research questions
• How do university students’ use digital devices
and web 2.0 technologies within their formal
learning...
Background
Top-down
‘culture
industry’ model
of education
Bottom-up
‘participatory’
culture
Jenkins et al (2008),
Francis ...
Background
Representation Language
Audience Production
Digital
literacy skills
Buckingham (2007)
Methods
1st round
(2010-11)
2nd round
(2011-12)
3rd round
(2012 – 13)
Questionnaire surveys of
undergraduate and postgradu...
Findings / themes
Transition into a new
academic culture
Access to and use of digital
devices, web-based tools
and resourc...
Ownership of computer and other digital devices (% reporting)
0.0% 20.0% 40.0% 60.0% 80.0% 100.0% 120.0%
Desktop
Laptop
Sm...
The most important device(s) for your studies / study-related activities
Note: 2010 – 2011, n= 53; 2011 – 2012, n=41
89.4%...
The devices used to access internet during term-time
Note: 2010 – 2011, n= 53; 2011 – 2012, n=41
81.1%
100.0%
54.7%
15.4%
...
Locations where you use computers during term time
Note: 2010 – 2011, n= 53; 2011 – 2012, n=41
94.3%
94.3%
11.7%
24.5%
64....
Top three locations for computer use during term time
(2010 – 2011 data)
University computer rooms
57%
27%
University libr...
Online activities
(2011-12 data)
0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100%
Update social network
Watch TV programmes
Lis...
Please go to the following URL and view /
download the data from the 2010-2011
questionnaire survey
http://goo.gl/kraQF
Approaching an assessed piece of work – patterns of navigation
and study environments
classroom
(face-to-
face)
VLE (lectu...
Mostly used web-based resources and tools for learning
Web tools and resources that students use for their formal
learning
Google, Google
Scholar
YouTube
Podcasts
Twitter
Blogs
...
NON-WESTERN Web tools and resources that students use for
their formal learning
Baidu
Youku
Podcasts
Weibo
RenRen
Baidu
Wi...
Recommendation sites / tools
P(J): I want to mention a special website. It’s a Chinese website and its
name is Douban. I f...
Twitter
Y: I find it quite useful for my academic work because all the
people I know, professors here [at the university],...
Final remarks
• Vertical and horizontal space of the new media
environment raises a number if challenges
• Expert and ‘non...
Challenges
University VLE-
based formal
learning
Web 2.0-based
personal
informal
learning
Research questions
• How do university students’ use digital devices
and web 2.0 technologies within their formal
learning...
Special thanks to our PhD students for
their contributions
• Dimitrinka Atanasova (Media and
Communication, Leicester)
• M...
Selected references
Adorno, T. W. (2001). The Culture Industry : Selected Essays on Mass Culture . London: Routledge.
DCMS...
PLE 2013 Conf Berlin Edirisingha et al 11July2013
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PLE 2013 Conf Berlin Edirisingha et al 11July2013

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This is the set of slides I have used at the PLE 2013 conference in Berlin on 11 July 2013 for our presentation.

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  • Jenkins et al (2008) ‘participatory culture’:‘a culture with relatively low barriers to artistic expression and civic engagement, strong support for creating and sharing one’s creations, and some type of informal mentorship whereby what is known by the most experienced is passed to novices’ (p. 3). Participatory cultures as supporting the emergence of self-directed learning activities beyond formal educational contexts (Francis 2011).HE students between ‘a top down culture-industry model of education (associated with mass media) and an emergent web-based participatory culture (associated with new media)’ (Francis 2011, p. 21). It is also: ‘one in which members believe their contributions matter, and feel some degree of social connection with one another (at least they care about what other people think about what they have created).’ (p. 3). Access to such a participatory culture has a number of beneficial effects for learners including: opportunities for peer to peer learning, the diversification of cultural expression, development of skills valued in modern workplace, and a more empowered conception of citizenship (Jenkins et al, 2008).
  • Tensions between the reality and perceptionsAddressing these challengesWhat research agenda? Finding evidence to accommodate the use of web 2 and informal learning integrated with the accreditation system
  • One way: educating the educators / facilitators to enable them to recognise and explre the possibilities of new tools and technologies along with their associated pedagogies. Our new MSc in Learning Innovation programme, significant part of it based on Web 2.0 technologies. VLE to the minimum.
  • PLE 2013 Conf Berlin Edirisingha et al 11July2013

    1. 1. University students’ use of social media and digital devices: insights into their personal learning environments Palitha Edirisingha, Tracy Simmons (University of Leicester, UK) and Arunangsu Chatterjee (University of Plymouth, UK) A research project funded by the College of Social Sciences, University of Leicester PLE 2013 Conference, Beuth University of Applied Sciences, Berlin, 10 - 12 July 2013 #CS01
    2. 2. Research questions • How do university students’ use digital devices and web 2.0 technologies within their formal learning context? • What are the digital literacy issues that might emerge in using web-based resources and tools? • How might we recognise students’ informal use of these tools and resources as part of their Personal learning environments?
    3. 3. Background Top-down ‘culture industry’ model of education Bottom-up ‘participatory’ culture Jenkins et al (2008), Francis (2010) Adorno (2001)
    4. 4. Background Representation Language Audience Production Digital literacy skills Buckingham (2007)
    5. 5. Methods 1st round (2010-11) 2nd round (2011-12) 3rd round (2012 – 13) Questionnaire surveys of undergraduate and postgraduate students to identify their ownership of and use of digital devices and web 2.0 tools (based on Francis, 2008) 53 students 41 students From July Focus groups (4) with students (3 – 4 in each group) to gain a deeper insight into their use of web 2.0 tools in a learning context 3 groups, 10 students 3 groups, 11 students From July Workshops with students to observe their online activities and digital practices 8 students From August
    6. 6. Findings / themes Transition into a new academic culture Access to and use of digital devices, web-based tools and resources Approach to an assessed piece of work Use of web-based tools and resources for their formal learning
    7. 7. Ownership of computer and other digital devices (% reporting) 0.0% 20.0% 40.0% 60.0% 80.0% 100.0% 120.0% Desktop Laptop Smartphone Phone Digital Camera MP3player Tablet eReader Gaming device Other 2011-2012 2010-2011 Note: 2010 – 2011, n= 53; 2011 – 2012, n=41
    8. 8. The most important device(s) for your studies / study-related activities Note: 2010 – 2011, n= 53; 2011 – 2012, n=41 89.4% 56.8% 44.4% 91.3% 38.2% 25.0% 0.0% 10.0% 20.0% 30.0% 40.0% 50.0% 60.0% 70.0% 80.0% 90.0% 100.0% Laptop Smartphone MP3player(R1)/Camera(R2) 2011-2012 2010-2011
    9. 9. The devices used to access internet during term-time Note: 2010 – 2011, n= 53; 2011 – 2012, n=41 81.1% 100.0% 54.7% 15.4% 0.0% 84.4% 98.7% 70.1% 6.5% 11.7% 0.0% 20.0% 40.0% 60.0% 80.0% 100.0% 120.0% University computer Own computer(laptop) Mobile phone iPod touch Others 2011-2012 2010-2011
    10. 10. Locations where you use computers during term time Note: 2010 – 2011, n= 53; 2011 – 2012, n=41 94.3% 94.3% 11.7% 24.5% 64.2% 11.3% 30.2% 13.2% 28.3% 20.8% 9.6% 96.1% 96.1% 11.7% 39.0% 68.8% 7.8% 32.5% 18.2% 36.4% 26.0% 3.9% 0.0% 20.0% 40.0% 60.0% 80.0% 100.0% 120.0% Term-time accommodation University library Public library Lecture/seminar rooms Computer room in the university Office or workplace Cafes at the university Cafes elsewhere At friends, relatives On the move Other places 2011-2012 2010-2011
    11. 11. Top three locations for computer use during term time (2010 – 2011 data) University computer rooms 57% 27% University library 65%, Term-time accommodation
    12. 12. Online activities (2011-12 data) 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% Update social network Watch TV programmes Listen to radio on the computer or mobile phone Write your blog Use social bookmarking sites Contribute to wikis Play video games Download/share music Use 3D vitural world Chat using instant relay text Make voice calls using Internet Share digital photographs Share videos Record your own music Mix music Make graphic art Contribute to onlin discussion Microblogging Subscribe to RSS Programming eBay trading Online shopping Online banking Use apps Rarely Sometimes Always
    13. 13. Please go to the following URL and view / download the data from the 2010-2011 questionnaire survey http://goo.gl/kraQF
    14. 14. Approaching an assessed piece of work – patterns of navigation and study environments classroom (face-to- face) VLE (lecture notes, slides, readding lists) LIBRARY (books, articles, learning space) CAFE (learning space) WIKIPEDIA (introductions,concepts, references) GOOGLE (books, articles) TRANSLATION SOFTWARE / TOOLS ONLINE SOCIAL NETWORK (friends, family) PERSONAL TUTOR
    15. 15. Mostly used web-based resources and tools for learning
    16. 16. Web tools and resources that students use for their formal learning Google, Google Scholar YouTube Podcasts Twitter Blogs Wikipedi aWebsites (Govt. and non-govt. organisatio ns) Websites (media org.) Websites (other) Recom mendati on tools Google Books
    17. 17. NON-WESTERN Web tools and resources that students use for their formal learning Baidu Youku Podcasts Weibo RenRen Baidu WikiWebsites (Govt. and non-govt. organisatio ns) Websites (media org.) Websites (other) Recom mendati on tools QQ
    18. 18. Recommendation sites / tools P(J): I want to mention a special website. It’s a Chinese website and its name is Douban. I find, it’s a very useful website for me, because if I want to read a book and I search the book in Douban, I will find the book. There is specific webpage for this book and some recommendations and some comments from other readers, their recommendations, their comments about this book. Besides, this website allow people to use tags about books, music or films, so members of this website can just search these tags and they can find relevant resources and besides that, the website will give you recommendations. If I search a book, and the website itself, will give some, some most relevant search results about, relevant to books. It means that, besides the book that I am searching it will display several books on the same topic, in the same theme, or several books most of the readers of this book were also interested in. So, for me, I suppose, it’s a very useful website for learning. But I haven’t found English websites that have the same function. [2011. FG2]
    19. 19. Twitter Y: I find it quite useful for my academic work because all the people I know, professors here [at the university], are on twitter but it is not easy to find these professors on Facebook. When I follow my supervisor on Twitter I can also see others who are also following him on twitter who are also professors so we can have useful conversations. [2012. FG3] Interviewer: What are the advantages of following your professor on Twitter? Y: He always updates on some academic news, what he has found out, his recommendations ….
    20. 20. Final remarks • Vertical and horizontal space of the new media environment raises a number if challenges • Expert and ‘non-expert’ information • Moving across ‘expert’ or ‘academic’ information that flows downwards: reading lists, Library e- link, alongside peer to peer (horizontal) information. • Seamless spaces on-line QQ, off-line: group study rooms in the library. • Students have useful mobile technology an iPhone provides multiple uses: mini photocopier, access web material, arrange group meetings etc.
    21. 21. Challenges University VLE- based formal learning Web 2.0-based personal informal learning
    22. 22. Research questions • How do university students’ use digital devices and web 2.0 technologies within their formal learning context? • What are the digital literacy issues that might emerge in using web-based resources and tools? • How might we recognise students’ informal use of these tools and resources as part of their Personal learning environments?
    23. 23. Special thanks to our PhD students for their contributions • Dimitrinka Atanasova (Media and Communication, Leicester) • Mengjie Jiang (Institute of Learning Innovation, Leicester) • Nan Yang (University of Trento, Italy)
    24. 24. Selected references Adorno, T. W. (2001). The Culture Industry : Selected Essays on Mass Culture . London: Routledge. DCMS (2009) Digital Britain: Final Report London: TSO. Available at http://interactive.bis.gov.uk/digitalbritain/report/being-digital/getting-britain-online/. [Accessed September 2009]. Dijk, J. V. 2005. The Deepening Divide: Inequality in the Information Society. London: Sage. Francis, R.J., (2010) The Decentring of the Traditional University: the future of (self) education in virtually figured worlds, Francis, R.J., (2008), The Predicament of the Learner in the New Media Age, DPhil thesis submitted to University of Oxford. Gee, J. P. (2004). Situated Language and Learning: A critique of traditional schooling, Abington, Oxfordshire: Routledge. Jenkins, H., Purushotma, R., Clinton, K., Weigel, M., & Robinson, A. (2006). Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture: Media Education for the 21st Century. Cambridge, MA: Comparative Media Studies Programme at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Available at: http://www.projectnml.org/files/working/NMLWhitePaper.pdf [Accessed 2 Nov 2010]. Melville, D. (2009) Higher Education in a Web 2.0 World: Report of Committee of Enquiry into the Changing Learner Experience, Available at: http://www.clex.org.uk/CLEX_Report_v1-final.pdf. [Accessed 29 May 2009]. Lave, J., and Wenger, E. (1991). Situated learning: Legitimate peripheral participation, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Wenger, E. (1998). Communities of Practice: Learning, Meaning and Identity, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Ofcom (2011b). UK adults’ media literacy.London: Ofcom.

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