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Higher education meets private use of social media technologies: An explorative study of students’ use
KTH, School of Computer Science and Communication (CSC). (Technology Enhanced Learning)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5407-0667
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The work in this thesis sets out to explore how students perceive social media use in the context of higher education. More precisely, the focus is on students' use of, experience with, and attitudes toward the integration of social media into their learning environment. To complement this, teachers' incentives for including social media have been studied; to some extent their communication, attitudes, and online activity were also analyzed.

The four different studies included in this thesis incorporated three major types of social media technologies: a social networking service (Facebook), a collaborative editable webpage (Wikipedia), and a microblog (Twitter). The studies adopted different approaches to data collection and analysis, including both qualitative and quantitative methods. The specific methods for each study were chosen to accommodate the research questions, for reasons of access to information, and due to ethical considerations.

While each study differs in starting point and scope and provide particular contributions to the research area, the main contributions of the work as a whole are connected to findings on attitude changes, the professional role in students' use of social media, their teacher-like actions, confusion regarding moving between the identified roles, and the implementation of social media in higher education.

The findings presented here are appropriate for guiding a nuanced discussion regarding the implementation of social media technologies in higher education, an implementation that was found to be contingent on appropriate use and a suitable social context. The findings suggest that the inclusion of social media in non-private contexts generally needs to have a clear aim and strategy for achieving it. The roles defined in this work - in terms of both being a student and the private and professional roles - could also serve as the basis for further exploration in other areas with comparable hierarchies in which it is necessary to understand how the individual relates to self-presentation, technological constraints, and roles, such as the relation between an employer and employee.

Abstract [sv]

Denna avhandling avser att utforska hur studenter upplever användningen av sociala medier i högre utbildning. Närmare bestämt så ligger fokus på studenternas användning, erfarenhet och attityder till sociala medier när dessa integrerats i studenternas lärmiljö. Som komplement har också lärarnas incitament för inkludering av sociala medier belysts, samt i viss utsträckning även deras attityder, användning och kommunikation i respektive socialt medium.

Fyra olika studier inkluderas i denna avhandling, och inkorporerar i sin tur tre olika typer av sociala medier: en social nätverkstjänst (Facebook), en publikt redigerbar webbplats (Wikipedia), och en mikroblogg (Twitter). Vidare har studierna använt olika metoder för datainsamling och analys, där både kvalitativa samt kvantitativa metoder finns representerade. Metoderna valdes med hänsyn till forskningsfrågorna, men baserades även på informationstillgång och etiska överväganden.

De enskilda studierna hade olika syften och omfattning, och därigenom har de bidragit till specifika forskningsfynd. Huvudbidraget från detta arbete är kopplat till slutsatser kring studenters attitydförändringar, den professionella rollen i studenters användning av sociala medier, deras lärarliknande agerande, förvirring beträffande att röra sig mellan de identifierade rollerna, och implementeringen av sociala medier i högre utbildning.

Resultaten utgör en grund för en nyanserad diskussion kring implementeringen av sociala medier i högre utbildning; en implementation som beror på lämpligt användande i lämplig social kontext. En tolkning av detta är att inkluderande av sociala medier i icke-privata kontexter bör ha ett klart mål och en tydlig strategi. Rollerna som definieras i detta arbete - student, privat och professionell - utgör underlag för utforskande inom områden där jämförbara hierarkier finns representerade och där det är nödvändigt att förstå hur individen förhåller sig till självpresentation, tekniska begränsningar och roller. Exempel på ett sådant är relationen mellan arbetsgivare och arbetstagare.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2017. , p. 62
Series
TRITA-CSC-A, ISSN 1653-5723 ; 09
Keyword [en]
Social Media, Social Media Technologies, Higher Education, Media Technology, Digital Media
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Research subject
Computer Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-219418ISBN: 978-91-7729-633-1 OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-219418DiVA, id: diva2:1162928
Public defence
2018-01-09, F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

QC 20171211

Available from: 2017-12-11 Created: 2017-12-05 Last updated: 2017-12-11Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. The student, the private and the professional role: Students’ social media use
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The student, the private and the professional role: Students’ social media use
2015 (English)In: Education and Information Technologies: Official Journal of the IFIP technical committee on Education, ISSN 1360-2357, E-ISSN 1573-7608, Vol. 21, no 6, p. 1583-1594Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Research has shown that students perceive a distinct divide between educational and private use of social media. The present study explores this divide by focusing on master students’ perception of roles when using social media in a higher education context. A qualitative method has been used, mainly comprising of analyses of home exams and interviews, which were conducted with students enrolled in the master’s course BSocial media technologies^. Results support previous research stating that students perceived a distinct divide between educational and private use of social media, and furthermore provide a more detailed understanding of this divide. The results from the study also indicate that there is yet another type of use: social media as a tool for career-building purposes, or what is labeled as professional use. Implications of social media for use in higher education are described through the analysis of three roles as performed by the individual: the student role in educational settings, the professional role for career-building, and the private role.

Keyword
Social media, Higher education, Student, Performance, Role
National Category
Media and Communication Technology
Research subject
Media Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-196834 (URN)10.1007/s10639-015-9403-7 (DOI)000410381000009 ()2-s2.0-84928752063 (Scopus ID)
Note

QC 20170118

Available from: 2016-11-23 Created: 2016-11-23 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved
2. Role confusion in facebook groups
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Role confusion in facebook groups
2014 (English)In: An Education in Facebook?: Higher Education and the World's Largest Social Network, Taylor & Francis, 2014, p. 162-170Chapter in book (Other academic)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2014
National Category
Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-187587 (URN)2-s2.0-84954596902 (Scopus ID)9781315883458 (ISBN); 9780415713177 (ISBN) (ISBN)
Note

QC 20160614

Available from: 2016-06-14 Created: 2016-05-25 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved
3. Attitude Changes When Using Wikipedia in Higher Education
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Attitude Changes When Using Wikipedia in Higher Education
2014 (English)In: EdMedia 2014 - World Conference on Educational Media and Technology, 2014Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In this paper we present a case study including 23 students at Williams College, MA, using social media technologiesin learning activities during the winter semester 2013. The study was designed to evaluate the studentsÕ attitudes before and after participating in collaborative wiki assignments. Results from the study showed a statistically significant positive shift in attitudes before and after using the wiki. Results indicate that the students perceived the use of wiki technology as an added value whenused for learning activities in a collaborative way and designed to match the learning goals of the course. The study contributesinsights into how student attitudes towards social media in higher education are closely connected to their perception of what can be interpreted as human behavior in collaborative learning activities.

Keyword
Wiki technology, Wikipedia, attitudes, e-learning, higher education, collaborative learning
National Category
Media and Communication Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-196869 (URN)978-1-939797-08-7 (ISBN)
Conference
EdMedia: World Conference on Educational Media and Technology
Note

QC 20161212

Available from: 2016-11-24 Created: 2016-11-24 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved
4. Twitter in Higher Education: How social media communication patterns alter students' roles
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Twitter in Higher Education: How social media communication patterns alter students' roles
(English)In: Article in journal (Refereed) Submitted
Keyword
Computer-mediated communication, Improving classroom teaching, learning communities, media in education, pedagogical issues
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-219420 (URN)
Note

QC 20171211

Available from: 2017-12-05 Created: 2017-12-05 Last updated: 2017-12-11Bibliographically approved

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