Social Media revisited

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

I have seen an increase in student participation by using social media. There are some students who don’t talk in class and now have elevated their grades b/c they are the main contributors to our site. Some of their pictures are the starters to our class and their blog posts about study skills and question forums has created a whole new venue for them. I do have the site on full lock down with members having to be invited to access it. Also all posts are moderated by myself to limit the ability of students to bully one another. They know the Shumay watch dog is out there and will deal with any deviance from the prescribed interactions. I have modeled in various ways how students should use the forums and keep adding content and comments just to let them know I m out there.
I did have one incident of a student joining twitter and following me. He posted an inappropriate word, one that is acceptable within his peer group but not that of mainstream society. I had to think as to my role in dealing with this… I finally came to the conclusion that I should talk with him. I ended up telling him that twitter is something that the world can read and what we post is a reflection of how we want people to see us. I asked what his parents would think if they saw or heard him use this word. He knew they would be mad and it was a bit of a clarifying moment for him. I left it with him by saying don’t say anything on twitter that you wouldn’t want your parents, grandparents or any one else you respect to read. Twitter is what the user makes it to be. It can be as trivial as following celebrities to the best source of information in bettering us as professionals, the choice is yours.

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