Social media isn’t the ‘new kid on the block’ anymore, it is part of the mainstream of university life. It’s been around for more than a decade now and most staff and students have engaged with at least one of the major platforms , such as Twitter, Whatsapp, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn or Snapchat (Carrigan, 2019) Social media affects the lives of staff and students in a number of ways. It can help build networks both within and across universities. Blogs and twitter enable academics, researchers, librarians and support staff to meet like-minded people , who go on to share ideas, promote their research and collaborate together. Social media can also be a source of continuing professional development, Twitterchats like #LTHEchat are a great example of this type of activity. The use of social media in teaching and learning has led to some great examples and experiments in innovative practice. Social media is now seen as an important graduate skill that needs to be embedded into the curriculum to prepare graduates for the workplace (Rowell, 2019). However, it also clear that the use of social media has a downside too. Examples of harassment and trolling are now are now being reported by both staff and students. This week’s #LTHEchat is designed to provide us with the chance to reflect and be critical about the pros and cons of social media. Is it just a distraction for busy academics? Are we controlling the ‘Twittering machine’ or is it controlling us? (Seymour, 2019) Do universities provide enough support for their staff and students. Is more training the answer? Join us at #LTHEchat to share your experiences and have your say. Carrigan, M. (2019). Social Media for Academics.
London: Sage Publications. Rowell, C. (ed) (2019) Social Media in Higher Education: Case Studies, Reflections and Analysis. Cambridge, UK: Open Book Publishing. Seymour, R. (2019). The Twittering Machine. London: The Indigo Press.
This weeks wakelet can be found here https://wke.lt/w/s/rzyNI9
Hi my name is Chris Rowell and I am a Academic Developer in Digital Enhanced Learning at London South Bank University. Previously I was Learning Technology Manager at Regent’s University in London, a Lecturer in Economics (1990- 2005) and a Lecturer in Education (2005-2010) at the University Centre Croydon.
My first degree (BA Hons) is in Economics. I have a PGCE and I also have two MA’s in Development Studies and Education (eLearning). More recently I have completed Prince2 training for project management. Currently I am doing a Doctorate in Education at the Institute of Education, UCL.
My research interests are all things to do with Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL). More specifically the use and evaluation of social media by staff and students in Higher Education.
Currently, I am an editor of the Association for Learning Technology’s (ALT) blog and journal ‘Research in Learning Technology’. Previously I have been a member of the Staff and Educational Development Association’s (SEDA) National Executive (2015-10) and Conference Committee (2010-1015) and founding member SEDA’s Special Interest Group on Technology-Enhanced Practice. I am also a Certified Member of the Association for Learning Technology (CMALT).
I live in Camberwell and I’m interested in things to do with cycling, photography, travel, politics and London.