Technology and Higher Education

Although it is from 2013, I found an interesting article about how faculty members are utilizing technology, and social media specifically, in the classroom. I thought it could be neat to look at one from earlier in the decade since social media has come so far since then.

In this article, they touch on the fact that Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook were some of the most popular social media platforms that were being used at the time. Although each of those are still very prevalent in the higher education sphere, it was funny to me to think about LinkedIn as a social media platform.

Of the participants that responded, 56% of them thought that social media was more harmful and distracting to student’s work. If over half of the respondents in 2013 thought that social media was distracting then, they had no idea what was coming next.

With increased technology and social media platforms, the ability to text from laptops, watches, and etc., professors are having to change and adapt to technology policies rapidly. In an interview with an accounting professor, Dr. Pope talks about the ways in which technology and social media ought to be embraced in the classroom. Since students are able to receive texts, emails, etc. on their phones, laptops, and watches, Dr. Pope feels that it is unrealistic to expect students to give their undivided attention for a 3-hour course.
Through the integration of social media in the classroom, Dr. Pope is able to have guest speakers are able to attend class virtually, as well as increase engagement for students.

Social media doesn’t have to be a taboo or forbidden subject in the classroom, but I do think it is important for students to be as engaged as possible when in class. And the reality is, doing this some days is hard. I like that more and more professors are beginning to embrace social media, but with that it is important to set clear expectations of how students should conduct themselves in class.

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