#Change11 #CCK12 What are the implications of using social media on one’s privacy and future study or career?

This is my follow up post on Facebook and its impact on social networking

There are promising benefit of using facebook:

“The strong linkage between Facebook use and high school connections suggests how SNSs help maintain relations as people move from one offline community to another. It may facilitate the same when students graduate from college, with alumni keeping their school email address and using Facebook to stay in touch with the college community. Such connections could have strong payoffs in terms of jobs, internships, and other opportunities. Colleges may want to explore ways to encourage this sort of usage.”

In this post relating to the  impact of posting of photos on Facebook, Dr Catherine Bond says:

“Thus, on the one hand, social networks are a valuable source of information for students, but on the other, they have become areas where students may not use these sites for their primary purpose – ‘networking’ and connecting with friends – for fear that their activities may be accessed by potential employers or ultimately affect admission to legal practice.”

There are still lots of debates about Facebook and its use, and not every educators and students are comfortable in sharing there:

“Very often, students don’t want to be Facebook friends with teachers, parents, relatives and other adults. The most logical explanation for that is that they are doing things online they don’t want the adults in their lives to see. But digital profiles are increasingly looked at as resume extensions. Kids should not post what they don’t want the adults in their lives to see, and the best deterrent for irresponsible posting is to have a wide array of adults present in students’ online world.”

For me, I would prefer sharing within my “social circles and networks” as I don’t think I would like to be sold with advertisement and posts which are hard selling to me.  Besides, what are the implications of personal photos being “exploited” for commercial purposes, on social networks and media?

Photo: Google Image

Should we be friends with our students on Facebook?  What would you choose? Why?

#Change11 #CCK12 #LAK12 Facebook or Twitter

Facebook or Twitter. Which one would you use?

Following are some of the posts.

This post on Facebook or Twitter contrasts the difference:

“Participants answered questions about the way they used Facebook and Twitter and which site they preferred. They also answered questions about their personality based around the “Big Five” personality factors of Extraversion, Neuroticism, Conscientiousness, Openness and Agreeableness, as well as the dimensions of sociability and “need for cognition” (this last factor is about people’s need to be mentally engaged and stimulated).

People’s overall preference for Twitter or Facebook:   People who scored higher in “need for cognition” tended to prefer Twitter, whilst higher scorers in sociability, neuroticism and extraversion tended to prefer Facebook. Simplifying the results, one might say that Facebook is the more social of the two social networking sites, whereas Twitter is more about sharing and exchanging information.”

These findings correlate well with previous researches on Facebook where I posted here:

Here is a research paper on Facebook.

With these themes in mind, the paper concludes that rather than necessarily enhancing or eroding students’ ‘front-stage’ engagement with their formal studies, Facebook use must be seen as being situated within the ‘identity politics’ of being a student. In particular,Facebook appears to provide a ready space where the ‘role conflict’ that students often experience in their relationships with university work, teaching staff, academic conventions and expectations can be worked through in a relatively closed ‘backstage’ area.

In accordance to research by Grosseck, G. and Holotescu, C. (2008), Twitter proved to be an effective tool for professional development and for collaboration with students, that can change the rules of the courses and models good pedagogy responsive to student’s learning needs.

Facebook is used as a social media tool rather than a formal teaching tool as reported here (FB as formal instructional environment).  In this How Higher Education Uses Social Media:

When it comes to higher ed, there are not only opportunities for digital learning, but digital marketing too. Some schools have taken the reigns on both sides, with mixed results.

Also, in this Social Media in Higher Education,

OnlineUniversities.com has done some research about the pros and cons of social media in higher education, and they summarized their results in the infographic below. It examines which platforms work the best and the challenges schools face as they try to learn how to manage their social media presence. Some key takeaways:

  • 100% of the schools studied are using some form of social media.
  • They use it in the classroom, to enhance school pride, as a professional development tool for teachers, and to reach out to their immediate communities and prospective students.
  • Johns HopkinsHarvardNotre DameOhio State, and Columbia make the best use of social media.
The use of FB and Twitter in MOOC has been reported here:
Facebook in MOOC:

However, only a limited number of participants joined the FB groups (8.2% of 1641 PLENK2010 participants and less than 18% of 700+ CCK11 participants), and only a small proportion of FB group members were active at any one time during the course. Subtle concerns and issues arose. Some participants did not join the PLENK or CCK11 FB group for privacy and personal security reasons. Others who joined the FB groups remained as peripheral participants for the duration of the course. Participants also highlighted the need for a sense of trust and feeling comfortable and confident to be able to participate, as well as a sense of presence and community. Some learners preferred the Moodle forum over FB as they expressed that they were able to learn more about the background, ideas, and beliefs of other participants than in FB. The CCK11 MOOC did not have a Moodle environment, and an excerpt from a blog post of a participant of CCK11 highlights some relevant issues:

The relative “character” anonymity of participants in the CCK11 as compared with the PLENK2010 cohort was an obstacle. The PLENK (Moodle) forum provided an easily navigated discussion interface. From the contributions on a wide variety of topics, I learnt a lot about the passions, the character, the beliefs of the participants. We were fellow learners, not just network nodes, and I would imagine a certain degree of trust was established between many of the participants. Facebook, the seeming preferred CCK11 gathering place, does not provide the same level of personal connection for me, so I am not currently feeling particularly nodish.

Twitter in MOOC:

PLENK2010 and CCK11 participants made use of Twitter, a Web 2.0 micro-blogging tool that enhanced social presence by providing a mechanism for just-in-time social interactions. It provided authentic opportunities to connect and be perceived as “real” in ways that traditional LMS-contained tools could not. There were participants who valued Twitter and found it the best tool for learning, connecting, and interacting with PLENKers. A further survey in CCK11 revealed that participants ranked Twitter as the most important tool for interaction and communication in the MOOC. The feedback from some participants, however, suggests that Twitter was still too new and foreign to them in PLENK2010, and a significant number of participants were hesitant to use it in public:

Twitter still seems too much another big distraction construction site for me yet . . . I merely use it to either retweet great tweets I stumbled upon, or to tweet valuable links via shareaholic, so “from outside,” but I often follow #streams for events or topics, sometimes multiple, via tweet tabs though.

Observations of the use of Twitter, however, showed that it supported coherence and connections between different tools during PLENK2010 and CCK11, including back channels to synchronous sessions, updates of news and events, and links to recordings.

Here is an update on Social Media 2012: Facebook & Twitter.

#Social Media – FB in MOOC

I have just posted on FB

Is Facebook “good enough” for sharing and learning in this Change 11 MOOC?https://suifaijohnmak.wordpress.com/2009/07/17/facebook-and-its-impact-on-social-networking-and-education/ If yes, why so “few” postings and sharing. If no, why? What and where else? I haven’t posted any here, as I don’t know much about others, and some security reasons. Also, is it an issue of dominance – when postings based on broadcasting, and not conversation?

Bonnie and Suz commented, and shared their views about FB and Google Plus.

I shared further:

For a teen audience, yes. For educators within MOOC (like Change11), I am not that sure still, if the comfort/power relations plays a part in FB. Our past MOOCs on FB did show a similar pattern, where 1-9-90 or even 10-20-70, where not much distributed learning (in form of conversation) took place. That was my observation, and my speculation was that FB still wasn’t appealing enough for “most” to come together in a group forum. Rather, each of “us” would post on our own FB page, on what interests us. As Bonnie has mentioned, there are “conveniences” with FB, especially with the update. I also found that many of our “facilitators” didn’t really think FB is that appropriate for the sharing, (George didn’t seem to be impressed with FB) as he mentioned in his post-as FBookers have become their “advertising targets” and not really their “customers”. I don’t know the perceptions of others enough, but in a course like MOOC, it is not good enough to know about each others’ preference, but to think about how we (and others) could use the learning space as an affordance, for conversation, dialogue, discourse, and debates, as typical in a forum or conference. Besides, I am not sure if posting “too much” on FB would be viewed as “good practice” or not, as the 1-9-90 did review a broadcast/dominance when it comes to power in the networks. This reminded me of Stephen’s suggestion of having a more egalitarian network, where everyone has an “equal chance” of sharing, and feel free to voice their opinions – the diversity and openness as espoused in networked learning, and a property of networks. Is such affordance available through G+ & Twitter, rather than FB? What are your experiences?

Here in an article relating to FB, Selwyn reports:

“We would contend that the students in our study were simply using Facebook in a number of considered, pragmatic and justifiable ways.”

The rising use of Facebook certainly raises “important questions about how universities will articulate their teaching relationships with internal student cohorts” in the near future (Kitto and Higgins 2003, p.25). Yet we would conclude that whilst social networking sites such as Facebook do not merit any particular laudation from educators, neither do they present any cause for moral panic.

Rather than attempting to appropriate Facebook for educationally ‘appropriate’

or ‘valid’ uses, or else regulate students’ use through coercion or surveillance, university authorities and educators are perhaps best advised to allow these practices to continue unabated and firmly ‘backstage’.

If “we” as educators are to model and demonstrate the use of social media (FB) and are not using it ourselves in the discourse in MOOC, would we expect our colleagues or learners to use it too in their online education and learning?

May be we have to consider the context of online learning (like MOOC).  Would Google + and or Twitter better serve the purpose?  Or would other Blogs be a better way to share and learn in MOOC?

Photo: Google pictures

#CCK11 Moodle, gRSShopper or Blog

Just read the comments by Ken here in Lindsay Jordon’s posthttp://lindsayjordan.edublogs.org/2011/03/13/cck11-oppression-freedom-and-control-of-the-learning-experience/
Moodle, gRSShopper, or Facebook, or other forum postings, which is a better one for “aggregating” the discussions as compared with Blogs, or Group Blogs? For some, Moodle, for others, gRSShopper, and still for many others, Blogs could be their safe havens to voice their views without being criticized in front of the public “arena”. Why? Bloggers could moderate the comments and criticisms posted by others. They could even defend their views without “loosing face” as they are having total control in their blogs. However, would this be possible in Forum such as Moodle, or gRSShopper? May be if one is the owner of gRSShopper, in case of Stephen, then one could have complete control over the “discussion platform”.

Even the FACEBOOK is not easily under the control of the poster if it is not under his or her ” PROFILE”.  If you don’t “like” to join the conversation, then you just don’t post or respond there.  But you can’t moderate the comments posted by others on the public FACEBOOK, and so your control is limited by others’ “power” over you.  Does it explain why many participants are still hesitant to post on the public FACEBOOK?

May be Twitter is different, as you could control it by moderating the posts to some extent. However, you simply can’t post a lengthy blog post there (though you could still use Twitlonger), as it is designed mainly for short conversation or update, conference update, short and simple interaction, or broadcasting, and not for deep reflection or discourse.

How about Amplify? This may be a good alternative, but running with the problem of its popularity.

The Quora may be a good option for posting a question, thus generating some discussions about a certain hot topic. But it is still at an infant stage, and may not be that suitable for discussing about particular topic of interests, which require linking of ideas together in a cohesive manner.

Would dialogues amongst nodes be more important to teachers’ presentation? If that is the case, then we have to ask if the dialogues would actually produce knowledge as emergent property, rather than just reading from the resources or artefacts. I suppose dialogues could both be internal (via internal thinking, reflection – the basis of critical thinking) and external validation, rather than mere “conversation”.

On Conversation:

Joining a conversation in blogs and forums also requires substantial skills – social, interpersonal, communication and emotional control skills, such as listening, comprehending and understanding (semantics), questioning, critical thinking, reflecting, evaluating, responding, and synthesizing.

Blog versus Forum:
Jenny has raised the question about her blog being used as a “market place”, rather than the front porch which is typically perceived by bloggers. Why?
May be if people couldn’t find the right place of sharing and discussion, especially when Moodle is absent, and that the topic may be too sensitive, then blog could be a wonderful place to “bake” the “half-baked ideas” or for those who really want to voice their views. Is that a shift in the way where conversation would occur? That is the result of interactions of the agents in the network.

*(see Mak, Sui, Fai, J., Williams, R. & Mackness, J. (2010). Blogs and Forums as Communication and Learning Tools in a MOOC. In Networked Learning Conference, Aarlborg (pp. 275-284). Retrieved fromhttp://www.lancs.ac.uk/fss/organisations/netlc/past/nlc2010/abstracts/Mak.html)

My conversation has now moved inwards to myself – like what Lindsay has mentioned in her post about the ego, self development and altruism.

However, I don’t think learners are not ready of the control of their learning. Many (adult) learners are capable of learning with their own autonomy, but it may be a challenge for them to learn within a complex network where the learning environment is totally open and new to them.

Isn’t this the same as like participating in a party, where you don’t know who is the host, and who the others are, and what their interests may be. You will not need to know everybody to enjoy the party, you just need to know some of them, and enjoy yourself, and this is the beauty of joining networks like CCK11.

Remember the PLENK?

Photo: From PLENK Course wiki and Zaidlearn

Here George has announced the discussion on Moodle versus PLE forthcoming. It relates to CCK11 experience.  That could be very interesting.

Here is my comment on George’s post:

Hi George,

Interesting to learn this coming event.  I have recently written two posts relating to the Moodle (LMS) verus PLE, including my views on their pros and cons.  I have been learning more with PLE, though have experienced much with LMS. I have been using LMS for years, and still using it.  Have found that I need to introduce PLE to counter-balance the needs of so many of my learners, so they could continue with their learning journey.  So, my verdit seems to be: LMS could be useful for novice and those who haven’t got enough skills in online learning or social networking, but once they have mastered those metacognitive skills, wayfinding and sensemaking, then PLE would serve them better.  That’s only my pair of shoes. So how about yours and others?


Invitation to join Connectivism Education Learning on Facebook

I think our Connectivism on Ning is “drawing near to an end”, likely in the coming months (may be in July), as we are very unlikely be able to meet the payment requirement by Ning.

So, we will have to move to other social media like Facebook and Twitter for further sharing and learning.

Here is the new Group Connectivismeducationlearning on Facebook

You are welcomed to join the group, and it is fully opened to anyone who are interested in the sharing of views and experience in education, learning and research.

We haven’t organised any sessions as yet, but will do so once more people have joined the group.

Jenny Mackness, Roy Williams and I are planning a research sharing session that relates to Connectivism and MOOC (CCK08) – The Ideals and Reality of Participating in a MOOC with George Siemens and Stephen Downes. It would be held in early July 2010. We will announce the details on the event soon.

Any one who would like to organise an event are also welcomed, here on Facebook.

You will also find me on Twitter.


Photo credit: Rebirth from Flickr

Facebook and its impact on social networking and education

Steve Wheeler posted in his blog.  He asks: Should we try to use social networking services such as Facebook and Myspace as serious educational tools, or should they remain the domain of informal chat and backstage antics?  Great question.

Here is a research paper on Facebook.

With these themes in mind, the paper concludes that rather than necessarily enhancing or eroding students’ ‘front-stage’ engagement with their formal studies, Facebook use must be seen as being situated within the ‘identity politics’ of being a student. In particular, Facebook appears to provide a ready space where the ‘role conflict’ that students often experience in their relationships with university work, teaching staff, academic conventions and expectations can be worked through in a relatively closed ‘backstage’ area.

I think it could be a huge challenge for educators to use social networking service such as Facebook as a serious educational tool or a formal education media.

First, as reported in past papers, learners won’t find it comfortable to learn with their teachers over their shoulders, too much “control” as the learners might sense.  Besides, this could be perceived as an “intrusion” of the learners’ private space.  Learner autonomy always comes first, especially in online learning in higher education.

Second, people go to Facebook for totally different reasons from formal education.  People (with learners alike) like socialising, sharing of feelings and emotions, or sharing of some interesting sites or links on Youtube, personal likes and dislikes, or articles.   Some may even prefer online dating, or just chatting with friends in an informal manner.

Third, educators could be more readily able to exploit Facebook when sharing with other educators, but would find it difficult to interact with learners.  For educators in Facebook, when it comes to communicating and interacting with peers or closed friends, there could be many taboos, as no one wants to be “gossiping” around other educators’ back – that is just not professional.  Besides, this could be viewed by students and other colleagues, and thus creating tensions.  Even counselling or mentoring might better be done in private, via messaging, rather than in an open public space.

Finally, Facebook is designed more on a private “family” sharing basis – with photos, short messages, links to great sites like Ted.com or YouTubes, blogs, or news etc.   So a light tone of socialising and networking would be more appropriate in the interaction and communication amongst friends.  Education with fun, or exciting news would be welcomed by the friends and family members.  And that may be the boundary that most people would draw IMHO.

Here is “Viewing American class division through Facebook and My Space” by Danah Boyd.

Facebook has 250 million users, amazing!  It has now got more than 500 million users (as at 28 Oct 10)

How do you use Facebook?

Postscript: More information from this 10 ways Universities Share Information Using Social Media.

This paper on Facebook provides a useful summary. Facebook usage was found to interact with measures of psychological well-being, suggesting that it might provide greater benefits for users experiencing low self-esteem and low life satisfaction.  That sounds good for people who want to socialize but may be too shy to do so in a face-to-face manners.  Also, this may help in boosting life satisfaction, by sharing views and experience with friends or classmates over FB.

Regression analyses conducted on results from a survey of undergraduate students (N = 286) suggest a strong association between use of Facebook and the three types of social capital, with the strongest relationship being to bridging social capital.  In addition, Facebook usage was found to interact with measures of psychological well-being, suggesting that it might provide greater benefits for users experiencing low self-esteem and low life satisfaction.

Postscript: This post provides a good overview about How much Facebook knows about your life.

A post on Why do people use Facebook on 17 Feb 2012.