Posted by: Sara | November 8, 2010

How to increase student engagement…. Twitter?

In previous years, students were disciplined for doing other things in class that might distract them from paying attention. Social media tools like Facebook and Twitter were once prohibited because they disrupted the learning process, but a new study has found that social media may not have such a negative effect on student participation. “Students in a study who were asked to contribute to class discussions and complete assignments using Twitter actually ┬áincreased their engagement over a semester more than twice as much as a control group.”

http://mashable.com/2010/11/04/twitter-student-engagement/

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Responses

  1. I really found this post to be interesting because just a few weeks ago I was amazed by one of my professors who was updating their Twitter during class. Like the post explains, students have always been disciplined for going onto social media websites and taking part in online discussions. This is just one way in which you can see how technology is influencing the educational world.

  2. I find this post really interesting as well; however, I am surprised how some teachers are still very old school in what they allow in a class room. Some of my professors only let students have lap tops if they sit in the first couple of rows so that they can make sure that they are only using their laptop to take notes and nothing else. Yet, some of my professors encourage use to tweet during presentations and are unhappy if we do not bring our laptops to class. What I am realizing that a lot of it has to do with the teacher, but that more of it has to do with the major and type of classes that you are in. While my public relations and advertising teachers love it and want it, my science teacher seems to despise it.

  3. I find this post really interesting as well; however, I am surprised how some teachers are still very old school in what they allow in a class room. Some of my professors only let students have lap tops if they sit in the first couple of rows so that they can make sure that they are only using their laptop to take notes and nothing else. Yet, some of my professors encourage us to tweet during presentations and are unhappy if we do not bring our laptops to class. What I am realizing is that a lot of it has to do with the teacher, but that more of it has to do with the major and type of classes that you are in. While my public relations and advertising teachers love it and want it, my science teacher seems to despise it.

  4. I find that I can learn just as well by listening to the instructor while using social media. The hard part is not migrating from a place like Twitter to another website which could take your attention away from the lecture at hand.

    If you’re tweeting about what you’re learning, then cool. If you read a headline about the newest celebrity craze and then click the link to the article, most likely your attention will be taken away.

  5. I took a class last term that required us to tweet during the lecture and to be honest, I felt that it was more distracting and took away from what we were supposed to be engaged in. Even if you feel like you are paying attention, when you go to tweet about something, you are disengaging yourself for those quick moments. I remember being thrown off when I posted a tweet and tried to jump back into the lecture. I think social media devices would be better used as a tool outside of class or at least after a lecture. It would allow students to absorb what they just listened to and could form their own opinions and thoughts on the subject.

  6. I think the use of social media and how it affects learning/engagement really depends on the individual. Some might benefit from having the extra stimulation to get through an otherwise uninteresting lecture, awesome. At the same time, I don’t think that the use of Twitter etc. should be mandated in any classroom because for some students social media is a distraction. If a professor allows students to use Twitter, then they should also be okay with students accessing other social media sites because other sites can also be harnessed for the same “professional” purposes as Twitter.


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