Hashtags & Retweets
Using Twitter to aid Community,
Communication, and Casual (informal) Learning
@Reedyreedles | Peter Re...
@Reedyreedles
@Reedyreedles
Rise of Social Networking Sites (SNSs)
@Reedyreedles
Lack of Twitter research
Easy to find lots of …
@Reedyreedles
Lack of Twitter research
But not much research
into howTwitter is
being used with
students
@Reedyreedles
PLE
Personal Learning
Environments
There is some talk about learners integrating
various tools to develop
(D...
@Reedyreedles
This research…
Investigating student’s attitudes,
perceptions and activity toward
the use of Twitter to supp...
@Reedyreedles
This research…
Proposes the 3Cs of Twitter (TC3) in Education:
Community
Communication
Casual (Informal) Lea...
The Literature
@Reedyreedles
The Internet & Social Media…
Increased use of the Internet over time
(Roblyer et. al, 2010)
Pew Research (US...
@Reedyreedles
The Internet & Social Media…
In 2001…
76% teens would
miss the Internet
Improved relationships
for 48%
32% m...
@Reedyreedles
The Internet & Social Media…
In 2007…
93% teens use
Internet
‘as a venue for
social interaction’
Decreasing ...
@Reedyreedles
Defining Social Media…
Web-based services allowing;
(1) Public or semi-public profile
(2) Connect
(3) Intera...
@Reedyreedles
Defining Social Media…
Social Constructivism
Communities of Practice
@Reedyreedles
Social Media & the Digital Divide
@
Students check SNSs and email with equal regularity,
but Faculty check e...
@Reedyreedles
Natives or Residents?
CC-BY-SA
@Reedyreedles
Social Media impacting on development of PLEs
(Hall 2009, Dabbagh & Kitsantas 2011)
‘Blurring of boundaries’...
@Reedyreedles
The Formal & The Informal
Institutionally Sponsored
Highly Structured
Prescribed Learning
Framework
Specific...
@Reedyreedles
The Formal & The Informal
Institutionally Sponsored
Highly Structured
Prescribed Learning
Framework
Specific...
@Reedyreedles
The Formal & The Informal
Institutionally Sponsored
Highly Structured
Prescribed Learning
Framework
Specific...
@Reedyreedles
What is Twitter
Launched in 2006
140 Character limit
Follow/Be Followed
Additional Functionalities
@Reedyreedles
Twitter in Edu…
The few authors actively
integratingTwitter within the
curriculum agree it can have a
positi...
@Reedyreedles
Good Practice in UG Edu…
7 Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education;
1. Encourages student-fa...
@Reedyreedles
Junco et al (2011)…
Structured use ofTwitter, including detailed explanations
and hands-on training.
Identif...
@Reedyreedles
Junco et al (2011)…
Aligned to 7 Principles;
Improved contact with Faculty (Principle 1)
Improved communicat...
@Reedyreedles
The Student Voice…
SteveWheeler asked students at Uni of Plymouth about
Twitter use in education…
CC-BY-NC-N...
The Methodology
@Reedyreedles
Methodology…
IntroducedTwitter as a voluntary tool for five different
modules with the rider to enhance comm...
@Reedyreedles
Questionnaire…
A questionnaire was sent to students, which was split into
3 categories:
Student Profile
Onli...
The Results
@Reedyreedles
Student Profile
42
RESPONSES
32
Male
10
Female
88%
Aged 18-21
@Reedyreedles
Main device for Internet access
13 1
13 8
6 1
Time Spent Online / week
2 4 6 8 10 12
61-70
41-50
31-40
21-30
11-20
<10
51-60
Hours online /
No. of
respondents
Time Spent Online / week
1 2 3 4 5 6
61-70
41-50
31-40
21-30
11-20
<10
51-60
Hours
online
~50% of respondents spend betwee...
Time Spent Online by Activity
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
<10% 11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 90%>
Social Networking
Gaming
Shoppin...
Time Spent Online by Activity
0
2
4
6
8
10
12
14
16
<10% 11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 90%>
Social Networking
Study
Time
onl...
Time Spent Online by Activity
0
2
4
6
8
10
12
14
16
<10% 11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 90%>
Social Networking
Gaming
Shoppin...
Percentage Time Spent on Study Activities
2 4 6 8 10 12
71-90%
51-70%
31-50%
11-30%
<10%
90%>
Frequency
14
33%
26%
19%
14%
Percentage Time Spent on Study Activities
2 4 6 8 10 12
71-90%
51-70%
31-50%
11-30%
<10%
90%>
Frequency
14
33%
26%
19%
14%...
Smartphone Use
None
15%
iPhone
31% (n=13)
Blackberry
13% (n=8)
Android
33% (n=14)
Other
85%
Percentage Respondents with Sm...
Smartphone Use
None
18%
iPhone
27%
Blackberry
32%
Android
23%
Other
82%
Percentage Respondents with Smartphones
This quest...
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
<10% 11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 91%>
Percentage Internet Access via Smartphone
Frequency
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 91%>
Percentage Internet Access via Smartphone
Frequency
This question highlig...
Facebook
Twitter
33
24
9
18
Active users of SNS before this course
Active Not active
Facebook
Twitter
16
10
6
12
Facebook Twitter
Not active 6 12
Active 16 10
Active users of SNSs before this course
Active N...
Should staff use SNS with Students?
Yes No Indifferent
19 11
13
12
128
60%
12%
14%
14%
Preferred single method of communication
Email
Facebook
Moodle
Twitter
59%
4%
23%
14%
Preferred single method of communication
Email
Facebook
Moodle
Twitter
Although many respondents are happy ...
Comments related to use of Twitter
Ease of communication
Speed of communication
Infrequent email use
Mobile Notifications
...
Actual usage of Twitter
Students were asked a series ofYes / No questions related to if,
and how, they have usedTwitter as...
Actual usage of Twitter
However….
All those that engaged found it a
positive experience…
More students engaged with fellow...
Feedback
The Discussion
@Reedyreedles
Hashtags
Encouraging students to tweet on a voluntary basis did not
sufficiently instill the importance of i...
@Reedyreedles
Reliance on Email…
Contradicting Pew findings?
StudentTweets increased at
formative assessment
opportunities...
@Reedyreedles
A Digital Divide?
Natives & Immigrants
or
Residents &Visitors?
A Digital Divide?
Digital Literacies
If we recognise
RESIDENTS &
VISITORS
we must also
recognise
the need to
support and d...
Social Media & PLEs?
Students are already using social
media tools in the formation of
their own Personal Learning
Environ...
Future developments
Archiving of tweets is
important to measure and
analyse later. Consider
Martin Hawkesey’sTAGS
Explorer...
Two more things….
If Students are already usingTwitter, are there
ethical issues involved in archiving their
tweets/discus...
Any Questions?
@Reedyreedles
Credits & References
Boyd, danah m., & Ellison, N. B. (2008). Social Network Sites: Definition, History, and...
@Reedyreedles
Credits & References
Junco, R., Heiberger,G., & Loken, E. (2011).The effect ofTwitter on college student
eng...
@Reedyreedles
Credits & References
Selwyn, N. (2009).The digital native – myth and reality. Aslib Proceedings, 61(4), 364-...
@Reedyreedles
Credits & References
Internet & Social Media arrow via Clip art
Natives or Residents: Children with iPad: CC...
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Hashtags & Retweets: Using Twitter to aid Community, Communication and Casual (informal) Learning

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  • If anybody is still interested in this, I've updated the data on the slides - something I thought I had done.
    P
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  • @cicronin Hi Catherine, glad you like the slides.
    I think the message re: digital literacies is important. We can't presume all students have all the skills - I think this was evident in that a number of my students were not fluent with Twitter, and some other studies suggest an 'induction' (of sorts) to fully introduce students to @replies, DMs, hastags, etc.
    Whilst I'm not fully up-to-date with all the literature, I try to keep an eye on some of Doug Belshaw's key work on digital literacies.

    Thanks again for showing an interest and I'm sure we'll share more.
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  • @BenGuilbaud Hi Ben, only just realised I had comments here. Too many places to check for discussions :-)

    I think Fb results are interesting. I have something under the burner regarding using Facebook with students. Not something I've personally done but rather a colleague. Hoping to collaborate soon and get something out.

    Many of the views on using Facebook in HE suggest students don't want academics involved in that personal space. However, I believe those views are at least 5 years old. Facebook has changed a lot since then, so we may not necessarily have to 'friend' students on Fb, but can create Pages and Groups instead. So the dynamics involved in using Fb have shifted, and as a result, I think attitudes, certainly from students, are beginning to change as well.

    We'll see though. Watch this space :-)
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  • Excellent presentation, Peter. Hear, hear for your message on slide 56! I also teach with Twitter (and Google+), so these results interest me greatly. I look forward to keeping in touch with you and your work.
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  • Great stuff, Peter! I'm actually rather surprised by results re: Facebook on slide 44 - very interesting!

    Like the 'Apple keynote' theme too ;-)
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  • Since the evolution of Web 2.0, or the Social Web, the way in which users interact with/on the Internet has seen a massive paradigm shift. Most notably, beforehand, the Internet was primarily a ‘tool’ with which users can receive information (Web 1), whereas later, users create that information, share and interact with others (Web 2.0).
     
    Web 2.0 tools and technologies have completely changed the dynamics of the Internet, enabling users to create content; be it text, photographs or video, and furthermore share and collaborate across massive geographic boundaries.
  • As part of this revolution, arguably the most significant tools have been those focusing upon social media. As such, Social Networking Sites (SNSs) such as Facebook has seen tremendous growth in recent years (Kassens-Noor, 2012), culminating in its recent IPO of roughly $100bn, where it’s suggested more than 80 million shares were sold in the first 30 seconds (http://money.cnn.com/2012/05/23/technology/facebook-ipo-what-went-wrong/index.htm).

    Although it’s quickly growing, Microblogging site Twitter isn’t quite at the same scale.
  • Although there are a range of blogs and websites discussing and promoting the use of Twitter in education, there is little published research into how Social Media is being used to support learning, learners and the student experience (Junco, Heiberger, & Loken, 2011; Kassens-Noor, 2012), however there is talk of how students are integrating various tools based on individual choice, to form their own Personal Learning Environment, or PLEs (Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011; Hall, 2009).
  • Although there are a range of blogs and websites discussing and promoting the use of Twitter in education, there is little published research into how Social Media is being used to support learning, learners and the student experience (Junco, Heiberger, & Loken, 2011; Kassens-Noor, 2012), however there is talk of how students are integrating various tools based on individual choice, to form their own Personal Learning Environment, or PLEs (Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011; Hall, 2009).
  • however there is talk of how students are integrating various tools based on individual choice, to form their own Personal Learning Environment, or PLEs(Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011; Hall, 2009).
  • This research project set out to investigate student’s attitudes, perceptions and activity toward the use of Twitter in supporting learning, teaching and assessment. In so-doing, this paper touches on a number of current debates in Higher Education, such as the role (and perceptual rise) of Informal Learning & PLEs; and debates around Digital Natives/Immigrants Vs Digital Residents/Visitors.
  • This presentation will touch on these debates and share the experiences of both teaching staff and students, using Twitter as a voluntary communication platform. Based on early findings, it will also suggests the ‘3C’s of Twitter’ (TC3) in Education - Community, Communication, and Casual (informal) Learning,
  • Unsurprisingly, statistics show increases in the use of the Internet over time; Roblyer et. al (2010) draw on Pew research (Lenhart, Madden, Smith, & Mcgill, 2007) to compare Internet use from 2001 with 2007. They suggest in 2001;
  • Pew research (Lenhart, Madden, Smith, & Mcgill, 2007) compares Internet use from 2001 with 2007. They suggest in 2001;
  • The Pew figures (Lenhart et al., 2007) go on to suggest 93% of teens in 2007 use the Internet, and increasingly ‘as a venue for social interaction’ e.g. create/share content, tell stories and interact (p. 3i). The Pew figures also highlighted use of email was decreasing amongst teens, and Junco et. al (2011) suggest learners are beginning to favour communication through social networking tools rather than via email.
  • Boyd & Ellison (2007) define social networks as;
     
    ‘web-based services that allow individuals to (1) construct a public or semi-public profile within a bounded system, (2) articulate a list of other users with whom they share a connection, and (3) view and traverse their list of connections and those made by others within the system’
    (Boyd & Ellison, 2008).
  • This definition aligns with the ethos of social constructivism – the theory of learning suggesting social interaction is critical to the construction of knowledge (Vygotsky, 2002) – and the formation and participation within Communities of practice (Lave & Wenger).
    Furthermore, Roblyer et. al (2010) identify 60% of students using SNSs already use the platforms to discuss their education (in general), with over 50% discussing specific work (Roblyer et al., 2010). Junco et. al (2011) also identify positive correlations between SNS use and student engagement.
     
    It makes sense therefore that researchers and academics should look to harness these tools and technologies to enhance learning and teaching.
     
  • Social Media and the Digital Divide
     
    Robblyer et al. (2010) suggest students check SNSs and email with equal regularity, however Faculty were more likely to check email rather than SNSs. This could add weight to suggestions that students are more engaged with current technological trends than older generations.
  • Prensky (2001) first identified the possibility of such a diversion and categorised users as Digital Natives and Digital Immigrants;
    ‘Digital Natives’ – People born later than 1980, who have some innate confidence in using technology and ‘all of the other toys and tools of the digital age’ (Prensky, 2001).
    ‘Digital Immigrants’ – an older generation of users who have to adapt their current practices (and in some cases lifestyles) to harness technologies.
     
    Prensky’s work has been widely criticized for such harsh categorisations and exaggerations (Selwyn, 2009; White & Le Cornu, 2011). White and Le Cornu (2011) recognise the compelling nature of Prensky’s references to languages that seen it’s early rise in popularity, however suggest his metaphors, as criticised as they are, relate not only to a different time (e.g. 2001), but also to a different Web (1.0). White and Le Cornu go on to offer a new continuum-based typology for online engagement, with more consideration of the now commonplace social networking services available. Careful not to pidgeon-hole users into age or technical categories, White and Le Cornu use the metaphor of ‘Digital Residents’ and ‘Digital Visitors’ (White & Le Cornu, 2011).
     
    Digital Visitors are those users who may use a tool to carry out a desired function. The tool may not be the perfect fit for the job, but are happy to make some progress to the aims. When the job is over, the tool is put away again. Visitors are not interested in building profiles online.
    Digital Residents on the other hand, see the social web tools as a place, not too dissimilar from a physical building, or a park: places to meet up with friends and interact. The boundaries between the physical and digital worlds are increasingly blurred.
     
    In relation to this study, Prensky would suggest students should all be familiar with SNSs such as Facebook and Twitter, whereas White and Le Cornu would suggest users may or may not engage with social media to different levels depending on their personal aims and views on the tools in question.
  • Social Media and Personal Learning Environments
     
    Social media tools such as Twitter and Facebook are forming and impacting upon learner’s development of PLEs (Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011; Hall, 2009; Kassens-Noor, 2012), and through this, authors suggest learners can address the ‘blurring of the boundaries’ between personal, social spaces and formal learning contexts (Hall, 2009). Hall builds on notions that PLEs can ‘help integrate formal and informal learning’ in HE (Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011) suggesting formal and informal learning should be integrated in order to enhance learning.
  •  In discussing formal learning environments, both sets of authors use terms such as ‘Institutionally sponsored’, ‘highly structured’, ‘prescribed learning framework’ and ‘specified learning tasks’. These will likely include, for example, the structures in place through institutionally owned Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs). This can be compared with the ‘learner owned’ PLEs constructed of tools through personal choice and often including Web 2.0 tools. Although traditionally, academics see the two environments separately (Roblyer, McDaniel, Webb, Herman, & Witty, 2010), Hall identifies evidence suggesting eLearning as a whole is ‘rarely seen as separate or special by learners’ (p32), and that students already use a mix of tools (both personal and Institutional) depending on choice, access and control. He goes on to suggest the ways students blend and deploy both informal and formal tools ‘underpins their assemblage of a meaningful PLE’ (Hall, 2009).
  • Although traditionally, academics see the two environments separately (Roblyer, McDaniel, Webb, Herman, & Witty, 2010), Hall identifies evidence suggesting eLearning as a whole is ‘rarely seen as separate or special by learners’ (p32), and that students already use a mix of tools (both personal and Institutional) depending on choice, access and control. He goes on to suggest the ways students blend and deploy both informal and formal tools ‘underpins their assemblage of a meaningful PLE’ (Hall, 2009).
  • Social Media and Personal Learning Environments
     
    Social media tools such as Twitter and Facebook are forming and impacting upon learner’s development of PLEs (Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011; Hall, 2009; Kassens-Noor, 2012), and through this, authors suggest learners can address the ‘blurring of the boundaries’ between personal, social spaces and formal learning contexts (Hall, 2009). Hall builds on notions that PLEs can ‘help integrate formal and informal learning’ in HE (Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011) suggesting formal and informal learning should be integrated in order to enhance learning.
     
    In discussing formal learning environments, both sets of authors use terms such as ‘Institutionally sponsored’, ‘highly structured’, ‘prescribed learning framework’ and ‘specified learning tasks’. These will likely include, for example, the structures in place through institutionally owned Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs). This can be compared with the ‘learner owned’ PLEs constructed of tools through personal choice and often including Web 2.0 tools. Although traditionally, academics see the two environments separately (Roblyer, McDaniel, Webb, Herman, & Witty, 2010), Hall identifies evidence suggesting eLearning as a whole is ‘rarely seen as separate or special by learners’ (p32), and that students already use a mix of tools (both personal and Institutional) depending on choice, access and control. He goes on to suggest the ways students blend and deploy both informal and formal tools ‘underpins their assemblage of a meaningful PLE’ (Hall, 2009).
  • Social Media and Personal Learning Environments
     
    Social media tools such as Twitter and Facebook are forming and impacting upon learner’s development of PLEs (Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011; Hall, 2009; Kassens-Noor, 2012), and through this, authors suggest learners can address the ‘blurring of the boundaries’ between personal, social spaces and formal learning contexts (Hall, 2009). Hall builds on notions that PLEs can ‘help integrate formal and informal learning’ in HE (Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011) suggesting formal and informal learning should be integrated in order to enhance learning.
     
    In discussing formal learning environments, both sets of authors use terms such as ‘Institutionally sponsored’, ‘highly structured’, ‘prescribed learning framework’ and ‘specified learning tasks’. These will likely include, for example, the structures in place through institutionally owned Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs). This can be compared with the ‘learner owned’ PLEs constructed of tools through personal choice and often including Web 2.0 tools. Although traditionally, academics see the two environments separately (Roblyer, McDaniel, Webb, Herman, & Witty, 2010), Hall identifies evidence suggesting eLearning as a whole is ‘rarely seen as separate or special by learners’ (p32), and that students already use a mix of tools (both personal and Institutional) depending on choice, access and control. He goes on to suggest the ways students blend and deploy both informal and formal tools ‘underpins their assemblage of a meaningful PLE’ (Hall, 2009).
  • The Use of Twitter in Education
     
    Literature suggests those who have experimented using Twitter in teaching and learning agree it can have a positive impact on student engagement (Kassens-Noor, 2012).
  • Several authors (Junco et al., 2011; Roblyer et al., 2010) have identified Chickering and Gamson’s Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education (Chickering & Gamson, 1999) as a foundation for the use of social media in learning and teaching, and as means to benchmark ‘engagement’. The seven principles of good practice in undergraduate education include;
     
    Encourages student-faculty contact
    Encourages cooperation among students
    Encourages active learning
    Gives prompt feedback
    Emphasizes time on task
    Communicates high expectations
    Respects diverse talents and ways of learning
     
  • To this end, Junco et al. (2011) is one of the few empirical studies investigating the impact of Twitter on student engagement. In implementing the tool, the researchers ran training sessions on the use of Twitter (including explanations on how hashtags work, tweeting another user, etc), and embedded its use through mini assignments that needed to be completed. The authors suggest; ‘Twitter helped students feel more comfortable asking questions they may not be comfortable with asking in class’ (Junco et al., 2011), and furthermore highlighted a positive effect on both student engagement and grades
  • They then go on to relate their positive experiences with Chickering and Gamson’s principles for good practice, suggesting their research demonstrated;
    Improved contact with Faculty (Principle 1)
    Improved communication between students (Principle 2)
    Promoted active learning (Principle 3)
    Prompt feedback (Principle 4)
    Maximise time on task (Principle 5)
    Communicate high expectations (Principle 6)
    Respect for diversity (Principle 7)
  • In preparation for a keynote presentation, Steve Wheeler asked students at the University of Plymouth for quotes regarding their thoughts on the use of Twitter. He received a number of replies from students, such as;
    “Twitter, we’re better connected”
    “Twttr opens the classroom to the world, but also with this, the world of criticism and debate”
    “Twitter has opened a wealth of opportunities and information I never even knew existed. To be honest, might have to blog now”
  • Methodology
     
    One lecturer within the Division of Digital Media and Entertainment Technology interested in the use of social media in education, encouraged students to sign up and use Twitter as a potential solution to help encourage communication between students; provide a backchannel throughout teaching activities; and to aid the communication channels between students and teaching staff.
     
    Students were informed early on that they did not have to sign up to the service, but support was provided for those students wanting to. These students were encouraged to include dedicated hashtags if they wanted to tweet related to the course of study.
    Twitter was used by the lecturer across two modules with hashtags corresponding to the module codes: #MM5362 and #MM5361. Both modules are level 5 (2nd Year) UG Multimedia Developments module. MM5362 is studied by Combined Honours students, and MM5361 by students studying Computer Science and Multimedia Technology pathways.
     
    Throughout the duration of the year, the lecturer would regularly tweet links that might be useful to students as well as be available to answer questions, etc. Through the use of hashtags, these tweets could be captured using the Twitter Developer API, which were then embedded within the corresponding area for the unit in the University’s VLE, Moodle.
     
    Twitter was introduced to MM5362 students in Week 1 (September 2011). Due to collaborative delivery, Twitter wasn’t introduced to MM5361 students until Term 2 (January 2012).
  • Methodology
     
    One lecturer within the Division of Digital Media and Entertainment Technology interested in the use of social media in education, encouraged students to sign up and use Twitter as a potential solution to help encourage communication between students; provide a backchannel throughout teaching activities; and to aid the communication channels between students and teaching staff.
     
    Students were informed early on that they did not have to sign up to the service, but support was provided for those students wanting to. These students were encouraged to include dedicated hashtags if they wanted to tweet related to the course of study.
    Twitter was used by the lecturer across two modules with hashtags corresponding to the module codes: #MM5362 and #MM5361. Both modules are level 5 (2nd Year) UG Multimedia Developments module. MM5362 is studied by Combined Honours students, and MM5361 by students studying Computer Science and Multimedia Technology pathways.
     
    Throughout the duration of the year, the lecturer would regularly tweet links that might be useful to students as well as be available to answer questions, etc. Through the use of hashtags, these tweets could be captured using the Twitter Developer API, which were then embedded within the corresponding area for the unit in the University’s VLE, Moodle.
     
    Twitter was introduced to MM5362 students in Week 1 (September 2011). Due to collaborative delivery, Twitter wasn’t introduced to MM5361 students until Term 2 (January 2012).
  • Student Profile
     
    The first section of the questionnaire aimed to gain a profile of the student population.
    Table 1. Respondents Gender
     
    16 male
    6 female
     
      
    All of the respondents were aged between 18-21.
  • Laptops are the preferred device amongst respondents (63%). Interestingly all female respondents (n=6, 27%) favour laptops, and despite the surge in demand for tablet devices, none of the respondents use them as their primary device for Internet access. The developments in smartphone technologies are beginning to enable users (n=4) to use them as primary Internet devices).
  • 48% of respondents spend between 11 and 30 hours online per week (n􏰝20), equating to between 1.5 and 4.2 hours per day. However, some students spend considerably less - two respondents spend less than 10 hours online per week - and some spend considerably more - five respondents spend more than 51 hours per week online. There were also four ‘‘other’’ responses to this question, including: ‘‘Many/Too many’’ and ‘‘Continuously’’.
    The mean time spent online was 33 hours per week.
  • 48% of respondents spend between 11 and 30 hours online per week (n􏰝20), equating to between 1.5 and 4.2 hours per day. However, some students spend considerably less - two respondents spend less than 10 hours online per week - and some spend considerably more - five respondents spend more than 51 hours per week online. There were also four ‘‘other’’ responses to this question, including: ‘‘Many/Too many’’ and ‘‘Continuously’’.
    The mean time spent online was 33 hours per week.
  • respondents perform a range of activities online, with very few activities taking up a large percentage of overall Internet usage. In particular, no respondents spend any more than 70% of their overall time online in activities related to shopping, news and weather, or banking. In fact, these activities were those that respondents spend least time on.
    Although still uneven, respondents demonstrated a more balanced distribution for activities related to social networking and study, with the majority of responses spending between 11% and 70% of their overall time online in these activities.
  • respondents perform a range of activities online, with very few activities taking up a large percentage of overall Internet usage. In particular, no respondents spend any more than 70% of their overall time online in activities related to shopping, news and weather, or banking. In fact, these activities were those that respondents spend least time on.
    Although still uneven, respondents demonstrated a more balanced distribution for activities related to social networking and study, with the majority of responses spending between 11% and 70% of their overall time online in these activities.
  • respondents perform a range of activities online, with very few activities taking up a large percentage of overall Internet usage. In particular, no respondents spend any more than 70% of their overall time online in activities related to shopping, news and weather, or banking. In fact, these activities were those that respondents spend least time on.
    Although still uneven, respondents demonstrated a more balanced distribution for activities related to social networking and study, with the majority of responses spending between 11% and 70% of their overall time online in these activities.
  • 59% of respondents spend between 11 – 50 hours online per week (n=11), although some spend considerably less and considerably more. The average time spent online was 19.5 hours per week.

    Chart 4 demonstrates the range of practices related to study amongst respondents:
    .  6 (14%) of respondents spend less than 10% of overall Internet time in activities related to study.
    .  The most common response (n=14) was between 31 and 50%.
    .  Only three respondents spend more than 71% of their overall time in activities
    related to study.
    .  36% (n=8) of respondents spend over 50% of their overall time online
    engaging in activities related to study.
  • 59% of respondents spend between 11 – 50 hours online per week (n=11), although some spend considerably less and considerably more. The average time spent online was 19.5 hours per week.

    Chart 4 demonstrates the range of practices related to study amongst respondents:
    .  6 (14%) of respondents spend less than 10% of overall Internet time in activities related to study.
    .  The most common response (n=14) was between 31 and 50%.
    .  Only three respondents spend more than 71% of their overall time in activities
    related to study.
    .  36% (n=8) of respondents spend over 50% of their overall time online
    engaging in activities related to study.
  • This question gives us an idea as to Smartphone uptake amongst respondents.

    Blackberry smartphones are the most popular, followed by iPhone and Android.

    18% (n=4) of respondents do not own a smartphone.
  • This question highlights the range of overall usage of Internet access via smartphones amongst respondents.

    39% of smartphone users (n=7) access the Internet <30% on their devices, however 61% (n=11) rely on smartphones far more.
  • 72% of respondents (n=16) are active Facebook users
    Only 45% of respondents are active Twitter users.

    This could demonstrate the larger market share of Facebook amongst the student population.
     
    An additional question identified 100% of existing Facebook users had used the platform to discuss course related information on an informal basis.
  • Although many respondents are happy to use SNSs to communicate, Email still carries the most weight as the single preferred method for formal teacher-student communication (60%, n=25), followed by Moodle and Twitter (both with 14%, n=6), and Facebook (12%, n=5).
    All respondents in the 25-34 age category preferred email over other methods.
  • This question asked respondents to identify any benefits of using Twitter as a communication tool between teachers and students. Although the question only asked for benefits, some students included negative aspects as well. The responses have been loosely coded as above.
    20 positive comments were made related to the use of Twitter as a communication tool, with respondents identifying the speed of communication and ease of communication as key drivers. The informal and relaxed nature was also deemed positive.
  • Students were asked a series of Yes / No questions related to if, and how, they have used Twitter as part of their studies.

    Poor take up from #MM5361…
  • However….

    All 10 respondents who used Twitter, positively evaluated the tool…

    All 10 communicated with fellow students…

    And 9 accessed links posted by the Tutor.
  • Social Media and the Digital Divide
     
    100% of respondents, according to Presky (2001), would be classed as Digital Natives. As such, he suggests they have grew up immersed in new technologies, so we could expect respondents to be fully conversant with SNSs (as the subject of this study). However this research demonstrates that not all students are active users of SNSs. This reinforces White and Le Cornu’s perspective that Prensky classifications do not lend themselves to the Social Web, require a rethinking of classifications (if they are needed at all). The data therefore is in closer alignment to the idea of Digital Visitors and Residents (White & Le Cornu, 2011).
  • Social Media and the Digital Divide
     
    In recognising White and Le Cornu’s notion of the Digital Visitor, we also recognise the need to support the digital literacies of students in order to harness the potential of Web 2.0 tools. In identifying 100% of active Twitter users positively evaluating the service in relation to learning and teaching, we can presume other students would also see benefits. Therefore it is essential to enable all students, not just Digital Visitors, to become fluent and use the tools to enhance learning and the student experience.
  • Social Media and the Digital Divide
     
    In recognising White and Le Cornu’s notion of the Digital Visitor, we also recognise the need to support the digital literacies of students in order to harness the potential of Web 2.0 tools. In identifying 100% of active Twitter users positively evaluating the service in relation to learning and teaching, we can presume other students would also see benefits. Therefore it is essential to enable all students, not just Digital Visitors, to become fluent and use the tools to enhance learning and the student experience.
  • Archiving of tweets is important to measure and analyse later.

    Training critical to wider uptake (Dabbagh & Kitsantis).
  • If Students are already using Twitter, are there ethical issues involved in archiving their tweets/discussions?


    If PLEs are indeed personal and these tools are informal, do we run the risk of disengaging students by formalising them through structure?
  • Hashtags & Retweets: Using Twitter to aid Community, Communication and Casual (informal) Learning

    1. Hashtags & Retweets Using Twitter to aid Community, Communication, and Casual (informal) Learning @Reedyreedles | Peter Reed: Lecturer (LearningTechnology), University of Liverpool
    2. @Reedyreedles
    3. @Reedyreedles Rise of Social Networking Sites (SNSs)
    4. @Reedyreedles Lack of Twitter research Easy to find lots of …
    5. @Reedyreedles Lack of Twitter research But not much research into howTwitter is being used with students
    6. @Reedyreedles PLE Personal Learning Environments There is some talk about learners integrating various tools to develop (Dabbagh & Kitsantas, 2011; Hall, 2009).
    7. @Reedyreedles This research… Investigating student’s attitudes, perceptions and activity toward the use of Twitter to support learning and teaching. In doing so; Informal Learning Personal Learning Environments Digital Natives & Immigrants
    8. @Reedyreedles This research… Proposes the 3Cs of Twitter (TC3) in Education: Community Communication Casual (Informal) Learning
    9. The Literature
    10. @Reedyreedles The Internet & Social Media… Increased use of the Internet over time (Roblyer et. al, 2010) Pew Research (US) demonstrates reliance on the Internet…
    11. @Reedyreedles The Internet & Social Media… In 2001… 76% teens would miss the Internet Improved relationships for 48% 32% make new friends on Internet
    12. @Reedyreedles The Internet & Social Media… In 2007… 93% teens use Internet ‘as a venue for social interaction’ Decreasing use of email in favour of SNSs @ @ @ @
    13. @Reedyreedles Defining Social Media… Web-based services allowing; (1) Public or semi-public profile (2) Connect (3) Interact (Boyd & Ellison, 2008).
    14. @Reedyreedles Defining Social Media… Social Constructivism Communities of Practice
    15. @Reedyreedles Social Media & the Digital Divide @ Students check SNSs and email with equal regularity, but Faculty check email more (Robblyer et al., 2010) A digital divide?
    16. @Reedyreedles Natives or Residents? CC-BY-SA
    17. @Reedyreedles Social Media impacting on development of PLEs (Hall 2009, Dabbagh & Kitsantas 2011) ‘Blurring of boundaries’ between personal, social spaces and formal learning contexts. PLEs can ‘help integrate formal and informal learning’ in HE. Social Media & PLEs
    18. @Reedyreedles The Formal & The Informal Institutionally Sponsored Highly Structured Prescribed Learning Framework Specific LearningTasks Learner Owned Social Relaxed Personal Choice
    19. @Reedyreedles The Formal & The Informal Institutionally Sponsored Highly Structured Prescribed Learning Framework Specific LearningTasks Learner Owned Social Relaxed Personal Choice Faculty often see these separately, but… ‘eLearning is rarely seen as separate of special by learners’ (Hall 2009)
    20. @Reedyreedles The Formal & The Informal Institutionally Sponsored Highly Structured Prescribed Learning Framework Specific LearningTasks Learner Owned Social Relaxed Personal Choice The way students blend and deploy informal and formal tools ‘underpins their assemblage of a meaningful PLE’ (Hall 2009)
    21. @Reedyreedles What is Twitter Launched in 2006 140 Character limit Follow/Be Followed Additional Functionalities
    22. @Reedyreedles Twitter in Edu… The few authors actively integratingTwitter within the curriculum agree it can have a positive impact on student engagement
    23. @Reedyreedles Good Practice in UG Edu… 7 Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education; 1. Encourages student-faculty contact 2. Encourages cooperation among students 3. Encourages active learning 4. Gives prompt feedback 5. Emphasizes time on task 6. Communicates high expectations 7. Respects diverse talents and ways of learning Chickering & Gamson (1999)
    24. @Reedyreedles Junco et al (2011)… Structured use ofTwitter, including detailed explanations and hands-on training. Identified positive impact; ‘Twitter helped students feel more comfortable asking questions they may not be comfortable with asking in class’.
    25. @Reedyreedles Junco et al (2011)… Aligned to 7 Principles; Improved contact with Faculty (Principle 1) Improved communication between students (Principle 2) Promoted active learning (Principle 3) Prompt feedback (Principle 4) Maximise time on task (Principle 5) Communicate high expectations (Principle 6) Respect for diversity (Principle 7)
    26. @Reedyreedles The Student Voice… SteveWheeler asked students at Uni of Plymouth about Twitter use in education… CC-BY-NC-ND | Used with Permission
    27. The Methodology
    28. @Reedyreedles Methodology… IntroducedTwitter as a voluntary tool for five different modules with the rider to enhance communication. #MM5362 | #MM5361 #6ABL2303 | #6G5Z2001 #63MM6301
    29. @Reedyreedles Questionnaire… A questionnaire was sent to students, which was split into 3 categories: Student Profile Online Access Use of Social Networking Sites
    30. The Results
    31. @Reedyreedles Student Profile 42 RESPONSES 32 Male 10 Female 88% Aged 18-21
    32. @Reedyreedles Main device for Internet access 13 1 13 8 6 1
    33. Time Spent Online / week 2 4 6 8 10 12 61-70 41-50 31-40 21-30 11-20 <10 51-60 Hours online / No. of respondents
    34. Time Spent Online / week 1 2 3 4 5 6 61-70 41-50 31-40 21-30 11-20 <10 51-60 Hours online ~50% of respondents spend between 11 – 30 hours online per week (n=22), although some spend considerably less and considerably more. The mean time spent online was 33 hours per week.
    35. Time Spent Online by Activity 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 <10% 11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 90%> Social Networking Gaming Shopping News Banking Study Time online
    36. Time Spent Online by Activity 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 <10% 11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 90%> Social Networking Study Time online
    37. Time Spent Online by Activity 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 <10% 11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 90%> Social Networking Gaming Shopping News Banking Study Respondents perform a range of tasks online with few taking up large percentages of overall activity. Gaming, Shopping, News and Banking are the activities with least amount of time. Much more even distribution of time spent on Social Networking and Study
    38. Percentage Time Spent on Study Activities 2 4 6 8 10 12 71-90% 51-70% 31-50% 11-30% <10% 90%> Frequency 14 33% 26% 19% 14%
    39. Percentage Time Spent on Study Activities 2 4 6 8 10 12 71-90% 51-70% 31-50% 11-30% <10% 90%> Frequency 14 33% 26% 19% 14% 14% of respondents spend less than 10% of overall Internet time in activities related to Study. This was the most common response (n=14) was between 31-50%, however 19% (n=11) engage in activities related to Study in over 50% of their overall time online. This question demonstrates the range of practices related to study amongst the respondents.
    40. Smartphone Use None 15% iPhone 31% (n=13) Blackberry 13% (n=8) Android 33% (n=14) Other 85% Percentage Respondents with Smartphones
    41. Smartphone Use None 18% iPhone 27% Blackberry 32% Android 23% Other 82% Percentage Respondents with Smartphones This question gives us an idea as to Smartphone uptake amongst respondents. Not much separating Android/Apple use. 14% (n=6) of respondents do not own a smartphone.
    42. 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 <10% 11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 91%> Percentage Internet Access via Smartphone Frequency
    43. 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 11-30% 31-50% 51-70% 71-90% 91%> Percentage Internet Access via Smartphone Frequency This question highlights the range of overall usage of Internet access via smartphones amongst respondents. 57% of smartphone users (n=24) access the Internet <50% (of overall time online) on their devices, however 43% (n=18) rely on smartphones far more.
    44. Facebook Twitter 33 24 9 18 Active users of SNS before this course Active Not active
    45. Facebook Twitter 16 10 6 12 Facebook Twitter Not active 6 12 Active 16 10 Active users of SNSs before this course Active Not active 79% of respondents (n=33) are active Facebook users Only 58% of respondents are activeTwitter users. This could demonstrate the larger market share of Facebook amongst the student population. An additional question identified 100% of existing Facebook users had used the platform to discuss course related information on an informal basis.
    46. Should staff use SNS with Students? Yes No Indifferent 19 11 13 12 128
    47. 60% 12% 14% 14% Preferred single method of communication Email Facebook Moodle Twitter
    48. 59% 4% 23% 14% Preferred single method of communication Email Facebook Moodle Twitter Although many respondents are happy to use SNS to communicate, Email still carries the most weight as a preferred method for formal teacher- student communication (60%), followed byVLE (14%). 26% of respondents favoured SNS as their preferred method of communication. All respondents in the 25-34 age category preferred email
    49. Comments related to use of Twitter Ease of communication Speed of communication Infrequent email use Mobile Notifications Public Forum Links/Retweets Informal & Relaxed Moodle for important info Distraction Coded comments of benefits of usingTwitter in edu… voluntarily left 2 negative comments….
    50. Actual usage of Twitter Students were asked a series ofYes / No questions related to if, and how, they have usedTwitter as part of their studies. Have you contacted a tutor? > Was this useful? Have you contacted other students? Have you accessed a link from the tutor? Yes No 15 15 17 21 27 25 21 /
    51. Actual usage of Twitter However…. All those that engaged found it a positive experience… More students engaged with fellow students than with tutor… And more people accessed links that were active.
    52. Feedback
    53. The Discussion
    54. @Reedyreedles Hashtags Encouraging students to tweet on a voluntary basis did not sufficiently instill the importance of including a hashtag. Holding on to the Informal? #MM5362 | #MM5361 #6ABL2303 | #6G5Z2001 #63MM6301
    55. @Reedyreedles Reliance on Email… Contradicting Pew findings? StudentTweets increased at formative assessment opportunities@ @ @ @
    56. @Reedyreedles A Digital Divide? Natives & Immigrants or Residents &Visitors?
    57. A Digital Divide? Digital Literacies If we recognise RESIDENTS & VISITORS we must also recognise the need to support and develop so all students can harness THE SOCIAL WEB
    58. Social Media & PLEs? Students are already using social media tools in the formation of their own Personal Learning Environments 72% 45%
    59. Future developments Archiving of tweets is important to measure and analyse later. Consider Martin Hawkesey’sTAGS Explorer…. Training critical to wider uptake (Dabbagh & Kitsantis).
    60. Two more things…. If Students are already usingTwitter, are there ethical issues involved in archiving their tweets/discussions? If PLEs are indeed personal and these tools are informal, do we run the risk of disengaging students by formalising them through structure?
    61. Any Questions?
    62. @Reedyreedles Credits & References Boyd, danah m., & Ellison, N. B. (2008). Social Network Sites: Definition, History, and Scholarship. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 13(1), 210-230. doi:10.1111/j.1083-6101.2007.00393.x Chickering,A.W., & Gamson, Z. F. (1999). Development and Adaptations of the Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education. New Directions forTeaching and Learning, 1999(80), 75-81. doi:10.1002/tl.8006 Dabbagh, N., & Kitsantas, A. (2011). Personal Learning Environments, social media, and self- regulated learning: A natural formula for connecting formal and informal learning. The Internet and Higher Education, 15(1), 3-8. Elsevier Inc. doi:10.1016/j.iheduc.2011.06.002 Hall, R. (2009).Towards a Fusion of Formal and Informal Learning Environments : the Impact of the Read / WriteWeb. Learning, 7(1), 29-40.
    63. @Reedyreedles Credits & References Junco, R., Heiberger,G., & Loken, E. (2011).The effect ofTwitter on college student engagement and grades. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 27(2), 119-132. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2729.2010.00387.x Kassens-Noor, E. (2012).Twitter as a teaching practice to enhance active and informal learning in higher education:The case of sustainable tweets. Active Learning in Higher Education, 13(1), 9-21. doi:10.1177/1469787411429190 Lenhart, A., Madden, M., Smith,A., & Mcgill,A. (2007). Teens and Social Media. Retrieved from http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2007/Teens-and-Social-Media.aspx Prensky, M. (2001). Digital Natives, Digital Immigrants Part 1. On the Horizon, 9(5), 1-6. doi:10.1108/10748120110424816 Roblyer, M. D., McDaniel, M.,Webb, M., Herman, J., &Witty, J.V. (2010). Findings on Facebook in higher education: A comparison of college faculty and student uses and perceptions of social networking sites. The Internet and Higher Education, 13(3), 134-140. Elsevier Inc. doi:10.1016/j.iheduc.2010.03.002
    64. @Reedyreedles Credits & References Selwyn, N. (2009).The digital native – myth and reality. Aslib Proceedings, 61(4), 364-379. doi:10.1108/00012530910973776 Vygotsky, L. (2002). Play and its role in the Mental Development of the Child, 1-18. White, D., & Le Cornu, A. (2011).Visitors and Residents: A new typology for online engagement. First Monday, 16(9). Retrieved from http://firstmonday.org/htbin/cgiwrap/bin/ojs/index.php/fm/article/viewArticle/3171/3049
    65. @Reedyreedles Credits & References Internet & Social Media arrow via Clip art Natives or Residents: Children with iPad: CC-BY-SA Flickr User Ant McNeill

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