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Faculty Use of Social Media Continues to Increase

blendedlearning's picture

A recent report from the Babson Survey Research Group and education company Pearson, reviewed by Faculty focus, found that college faculty member's use of social media has continued to increase in the last year. Their results, which are based on an annual survey of 8,000 teaching faculty, looks at both personal and professional use of social media, and found increases in both areas.

On a personal level, faculty's use of social media is on par with the usage level of the general population, reporting in at slightly about 70 percent. Use of social media in professional context has increased almost 11% from last year, up from 44.7 to 55 percent. These gains also reflect an increasingly diverse use of sites and platforms, fulfilling various personal and professional needs.

Despite these increases, the report also finds that faculty still have concerns about using social media for teaching purposes. Their concerns include privacy, the integrity of student submissions, and the worry that these technologies can be distracting. On the other hand, a majority of the faculty surveyed agreed that the use of online and mobile technologies can and has improve learning environments and increase communication with students. The surveyers interpret these contradictory trends to mean that social media is indeed on the rise in education; but educators and the providers of educational technologies need to refine their strategies, and find the best ways to use social technologies to further educational outcomes.

Users need to register with Pearson to view the complete report, and can do so here.