Welcome 2010 NACTA participants! I’m excited to serve as the keynote speaker for this year’s conference. I wrote this blog post and have invited you to comment on it because I have a short amount of time to engage with you during my keynote address.
My goals of this blog post are twofold:
- To learn about what you’d like for me to discuss during my keynote and to provide a space where you can ask questions. I will respond to your questions about using social media in the classroom via the comments section. If you’d like, we can also continue the conversations in realspace during the social events on Tuesday and Thursday evenings.
- To provide some background on social media use for educators.
My keynote address will focus on using social media in educationally-relevant ways. While Facebook falls under the category of social media, I will only briefly discuss Facebook during my address because I have grave concerns about Facebook’s disregard of user privacy. While I have conducted research on using Facebook for academic purposes, I believe Facebook’s utility in the academic space is now nearly irrelevant given these issues. My sentiments are congruent with the concerns raised in this blog post and in this follow-up by danah boyd. On May 26, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced a simplification of their privacy options, although it will take some time before users can begin to trust Facebook again.
I’ll spend more time talking about another social media site, Twitter. Not only because of the aforementioned concerns with Facebook, but also because my most recent research has been focused on using Twitter in educationally-relevant ways. If you aren’t familiar with Twitter, here is a primer:
If you have never used social media and are willing to give it a try, you may find these 3 tips for new social media users helpful. Additionally, here are answers to frequently asked questions about Twitter. The following video shows one of the ways that a faculty member has used Twitter in the classroom:
This video is from a talk I gave at the end of December 2009 about our longitudinal, experimental study of using Twitter in order to engage students:
I look forward to your comments and questions.
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