Humble Theory Summaries.
Blonder, R., & Rap, S. (2017). I like Facebook: Exploring Israeli high school chemistry teachers’ TPACK and self-efficacy beliefs. Education and Information Technologies, 22(2), 697–724. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10639-015-9384-6
This article details the case studies of three highly-experienced chemistry teachers with varying technological prowess who were asked to use Facebook to facilitate Chemistry Learning Facebook Groups (CLFGs) within their classes. Their self-efficacy beliefs and TPACK (Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge) were tracked and analyzed via questionnaire, interview, and interactions within the CLFGs. This study was a subset of a larger study described in Rap and Blonder (2015).
Excellent Quote: “Hearing how other teachers had dealt with CLFG challenges was supported in two ways: the teachers could learn from the successful experiences of other teachers, but at the same time, they could imagine themselves reacting and interacting in the CLFG in the same way that was presented by those teachers that had presented the successful example. This provided a mechanism for developing teachers’ self-efficacy beliefs through vicarious experience (Tschannen-Moran et al. 1998).” (pg. 724)
Kirkwood, K. (2010). The SNAP Platform: social networking for academic purposes. Campus-Wide Information Systems, 27(3), 118–126. https://doi.org/10.1108/10650741011054429
Social networking for academic purposes (SNAP) platforms can maximize collaborative and social opportunities that enhance student learning within a course, a course of study, or institution-wide. Development of such a platform can also enhance institutional responsiveness to student needs. The biggest threats to using SNAP within institutions is the active nature of using the platform, whereas most university teaching requires far more passivity from students.
Excellent Quotes: 1. “In a knowledge economy the principles of active learning are paramount: students need to learn how to become arbiters of their own education, and how to negotiate and filter the increasingly complex and contradictory digital information and social environments to which they now have access (Hase and Kenyon, 2000; Huijser, 2006).” (pg. 119) 2. “The primary hurdle to academic social networking may not, in fact, be the constraints of the platform; it may rest, rather, in the academic culture itself – a culture that, from lectures and lecture halls to learning management systems, tends to encourage student passivity.” (pg. 124)
Kirschner, P. A., & Karpinski, A. C. (2010). Facebook® and academic performance. Computers in Human Behavior, 26(6), 1237–1245. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2010.03.024
A correlational survey-based study of 219 students (102 undergraduate; 117 graduate) showed that greater Facebook usage resulted in lower GPAs when Facebook was used exclusively for social non-academic purposes. Facebook users reported less time studying and more general distraction, even though Facebook users and non-users reported similar times online. Multitasking is mainly blamed for the distraction.
Lambić, D. (2016). Correlation between Facebook use for educational purposes and academic performance of students. Computers in Human Behavior, 61, 313–320. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chb.2016.03.052
This study details a positive correlation between Facebook usage and academic performance. Findings included the idea that Facebook creates a larger sense of community and eases conversations among students as well as the notion that teacher presence may decrease discourse among students. Multitasking may negatively confound the relationship between Facebook usage and academic performance when students use social media instead of studying or focusing on the task at hand.
Excellent Quote: “Students used Facebook groups for discussion about the subject matter, and based on the questions of other students discovered deficiencies in their own knowledge. The use of Facebook enabled students to communicate more easily with their colleagues who at the time possessed a greater understanding of certain parts of the subject matter, which had a positive influence on their knowledge (Ainin et al., 2015; Rambe, 2012), consequently leading to a better academic performance compared to students who had not managed to use adequately this convenience provided by the application of Facebook in education.” (pg. 318)
Mazer, J. P., Murphy, R. E., & Simonds, C. J. (2007). I’ll See You On “Facebook”: The Effects of Computer-Mediated Teacher Self-Disclosure on Student Motivation, Affective Learning, and Classroom Climate. Communication Education, 56(1), 1–17. https://doi.org/10.1080/03634520601009710
As the title suggests, the study documented here measured teacher self-disclosure (high or low) on student motivation, affective learning, and classroom climate. Preliminary findings suggest higher teacher self-disclosure positively effects all three, making Facebook a potential tool for nurturing teacher-student relationships. The effect size was small, however, so these results are far from conclusive.
Excellent Quotes: 1. “The results of this study contribute to prior research that suggests teacher self disclosure has a positive influence on important variables such as teacher clarity (Wamback & Brothen, 1997), student participation (Fusani, 1994; Goldstein & Benassi, 1994), and affective learning (Sorensen, 1989).” (pgs. 12-13) 2. “The present study suggests that when a teacher self-discloses certain information, such as personal pictures, messages from friends and family, and opinions on certain topics, students may perceive similarities between themselves and the instructor.” (pg. 13)
Prescott, J., Wilson, S., & Becket, G. (2013). Facebook use in the learning environment: do students want this? Learning, Media and Technology, 38(3), 345–350. https://doi.org/10.1080/17439884.2013.788027
This article details a survey-based study of mostly nursing and social work students in the UK as to whether they would choose to use Facebook for learning purposes. The majority (78%) did not want to use Facebook for learning purposes but of those who did (22%), the main draw was increased accessibility to faculty and staff.
Excellent Quotes: 1. “it appears students are keen for Facebook to be used as part of course communication and more informal learning, which enables students to gain information and resources.” (pg. 348) 2. “Facebook in particular is an interesting technology since there is an increasing blurring between its use in an individuals’ personal and professional life. Indeed more and more employers are using Facebook as a sifting tool for potential employees (De la Llama et al. 2012). Perhaps it is this blurring of the personal and professional which underlies students’ cautiousness with regard to the use of Facebook as a more formal learning tool.” (pg. 348)
Rap, S., & Blonder, R. (2016). Let’s Face(book) It: Analyzing Interactions in Social Network Groups for Chemistry Learning. Journal of Science Education and Technology, 25(1), 62–76. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10956-015-9577-1
Can social networks, such as Facebook, be used to learn chemistry more effectively and if so, what kinds of interactions develop between students? According to this study, which analyzed 12 chemistry teachers (of varying technological prowess) and their students, who could optionally join the chemistry learning Facebook groups (CLFGs). The major learning interactions included: monologues (teacher-initiated), triadic dialogues (much like those found in the classroom), and commognitive conflicts (a conversation in which the participants obey different discourse rules (and that resolve often when correct language is used)).
Excellent Quotes: 1. “The combination of social presence, cognitive presence, and teaching presence in the groups creates a learning-promoting online environment (Garrison et al. 2000).” (pg. 74) 2. “Although this study focuses on Facebook groups learning chemistry, we believe that the results can be generalized: (1) Not only chemistry can be learned using Facebook groups – other subjects could be benefit from the use of Facebook groups as learning platform. (2) Chemistry can be learned not only using Facebook groups, there are also other SNs that can provide this platform.” (pg. 74)