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Case Studies in Teaching and Learning with Social Media in Higher Education


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In this session the presenters shared best practices in using social media by presenting data derived from multiple case studies at a large university in the western United States. The researchers will discuss the effects of these technologies on students’ learning experiences, general principles for successful use of social media, challenges encountered by their use, and ideas for improving the use of social media in higher education courses from both the instructor and student perspectives.

For more information on our cases, see

Published in: Education, Technology, Business

Case Studies in Teaching and Learning with Social Media in Higher Education

  1. 1. Case Studies in Teaching and Learning with Social Media in Higher Education Michael C. Johnson Jeff Fox BYU Center for Teaching & Learning AECT 2010 - Anaheim, CA
  2. 2. Purpose Axiom 1: LMS is time-bound, course-centric, instructor-centric, walled garden Axion 2: Free (or cheap) web tools (PLE) enable social learning and perform LMS functions better. Conclusion: Social Media and web applications will make the LMS obsolete - build your PLE today. Research Question: What are average faculty actually doing? What do they use? How do they use it? What problems do they encounter? What is the impact?
  3. 3. Methodology • Case Studies Drawn From: o Campus wide tech survey o Experiences serving faculty at CTL • Data Collection o Survey Faculty Students (where possible) o Interviews • Thematic Analysis
  4. 4. Third Party Tool Usage 300/2000 = 15% (excludes online courses)
  5. 5. Social Media Tool Usage
  6. 6. Types of Tools Used by Faculty see summary of cases
  7. 7. More info: • university-classes/ •
  8. 8. More info: •
  9. 9. More info: •
  10. 10. Summary of Intended Uses • Discussion board replacement • Work sharing • Feedback and comment • Public product, better product • Build and maintain community • Learn online tools/technology of their trade • Co-creation of content • Get to know students • Just in time assessment and teaching • Share "extra" resources
  11. 11. Summary of Challenges • Administrative Hassles o Accounts o Tool peculiarities o Technical problems o Hard to monitor what everyone is doing • More complaints if usage is required and involuntary • No connection to campus grading tool • Lack of student buy-in due to fear or confusion • Keeping social life separate from work life • Disappearing products (Google groups features, Free Ning)
  12. 12. Summary of Perceived Impact • Improved learning • Students coming prepared, more engaged • Some connections and learning that extend beyond boundaries of the course • Students intentionally trying their best • Students finding meaning in their work • Students learning useful technological skills • Improved relationships with students and among students
  13. 13. Faculty Support • Stay current on tools and uses as a Center • Research tools and uses • Model their use • Tech Tips • Individual Consultation o Match tools to goals o Help faculty setup technology and get started (training) • Development o Major modifications o Creation of new tools
  14. 14. Examples
  15. 15. Conclusions • Begin with the end in mind...let pedagogy drive tool usage • Good use of good tools can expand learning and community, if you can tolerate the hassle of products beyond your control.
  16. 16. Questions & Comments • What successes have you seen? • What additional problems have you seen? • How do we help those who could benefit?
  17. 17. Contact Info Mike's Twitter: @michaelcjohnson Jeff's Twitter: @utfoxes BYU Center for Teaching & Learning Twitter: @byuctl
  18. 18. Thank You!