Parallel running of two social media from different countries: WeChat and blog for international students
Our work with Chinese students from the Confucius Institute (CI) at St. Cloud State University (SCSU) shed light on an interesting development: in the last several years, the popular Chinese social media platform WeChat dominates the social life of Chinese people, Chinese students in particular.
Based on the WeChat affinity of the Chinese students at the SCSU CI program, the program organizers faced difficulty applying other social media platforms, as part of the curricula of the host country. Namely, blog, as one of the widely used SM platform for creative writing (citation comes here), was contemplated as a SM platform for the Chinese students to journal their experience at the SCSU CI program. Since WeChat behaves rather like Facebook and Snapchat, the lack of opportunity to utilize widely available platform for rather lengthy narration (versus SMS/texting abilitis of Twitter and WeChat) convince the SCSU CI program organizers to seek the buy in by Chinese students into the blog initiative.
Pang (2018) builds a theory based on Ellison (2007) theory of “maintained social capital,” namely the ability of individuals to maintain values of social ties when geographically disconnected. Ping (2018) further narrows her research on Chinese students in Germany using Li and Chen (2014) findings about Ellison’s theory on students in a foreign environment and the necessity for these students to build a new circle of friends in the host country. According to Basilisco an Cha (2015), such environment was provided for Filipino students by using Facebook and Twitter.
Agur, C., Belair-Gagnon, V., & Frish, N. (2018). Mobile sourcing: A case study of journalistic norms and usage of chat apps. Mobile Meida and Communication, 6(1), 53–70. https://doi.org/DOI: 10.1177/2050157917725549
Chen, Y. (2017). WeChat use among Chinese college students: Exploring gratifications and political engagement in China. Journal of International and Intercultural Communication, 10(1), 25–43. https://doi.org/10.1080/17513057.2016.1235222
Pang, H. (2016). Understanding key factors affecting young people’s WeChat usage: an empirical study from uses and gratifications perspective. International Journal of Web Based Communities, 12(3), 262. https://doi.org/10.1504/IJWBC.2016.077757
Pang, H. (2018). Understanding the effects of WeChat on perceived social capital and psychological well-being among Chinese international college students in Germany. Aslib Journal of Information Management, 70(3), 288–304. https://doi.org/DOI 10.1108/AJIM-01-2018-0003
Run Zhi Zhu, X. L. X. (2015). The Influence of Social Media on Sleep Quality: A Study of Undergraduate Students in Chongqing, China. Journal of Nursing & Care, 04(03). https://doi.org/10.4172/2167-1168.1000253
Wang, Y., Fang, W.-C., Han, J., & Chen, N.-S. (2016). Exploring the affordances of WeChat for facilitating teaching, social and cognitive presence in semi-synchronous language exchange. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology. https://doi.org/10.14742/ajet.2640
Whether your school or district has officially adopted social media or not, conversations are happening in and around your school on everything from Facebook to Snapchat. Schools must reckon with this reality and commit to supporting thoughtful and critical social media use among students, teachers and administrators. If not, schools and classrooms risk everything from digital distraction to privacy violations.
Key Elements to Include in a Social Media Policy
Create parent opt-out forms that specifically address social media use.Avoid blanket opt-outs that generalize all technology or obfuscate how specific social media platforms will be used. (See this example by the World Privacy Forum as a starting point.)
Use these opt-out forms as a way to have more substantive conversations with parents about what you’re doing and why.
Describe what platforms are being used, where, when and how.
Avoid making the consequences of opt-out selections punitive (e.g., student participation in sports, theater, yearbook, etc.).
Restrict location sharing: Train teachers and students on how to turn off geolocation features/location services on devices as well as in specific apps.
Minimize information shared in teacher’s social media profiles: Advise teachers to list only grade level and subject in their public profiles and not to include specific school or district information.
Make social media use transparent to students: Have teachers explain their social media plan, and find out how students feel about it.
Most important: As with any technology, attach social media use to clearly articulated goals for student learning. Emphasize in your guidelines that teachers should audit any potential use of social media in terms of student-centered pedagogy: (1) Does it forward student learning in a way impossible through other means? and (2) Is using social media in my best interests or in my students’?
Moving from Policy to Practice.
Social media policies, like policies in general, are meant to mitigate the risk and liability of institutions rather than guide and support sound pedagogy and student learning. They serve a valuable purpose, but not one that impacts classrooms. So how do we make these policies more relevant to classrooms?
First, it forces policy to get distilled into what impacts classroom instruction and administration. Second, social media changes monthly, and it’s much easier to update a faculty handbook than a policy document. Third, it allows you to align social media issues with other aspects of teaching (assessment, parent communication, etc.) versus separating it out in its own section.
Tired of hearing all the reasons why you should be using Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other popular social media tools? Perhaps it’s time to explore social media tools in a supportive and engaging environment with a keen eye toward using those tools more effectively in your work.
Join us and social media guru and innovator Paul Signorelli in this four-week, highly-interactive eCourse as he explores a variety of social media tools in terms of how they can be used to organize information and communities. Together, you will survey and use a variety of social media tools, such as Delicious, Diigo, Facebook, Goodreads, Google Hangouts, LibraryThing, Pinterest, Twitter, and more! You will also explore how social media tools can be used to organize and disseminate information and how they can be used to foster and sustain communities of learning.
After participating in this eCourse, you will have an:
Awareness of how social media tools can be used to support the work you do with colleagues and other community stakeholders in fostering engagement through onsite and online communities
Increased ability to identify, explore, and foster the use of social media tools that support you and those you serve
Increased ability to use a variety of social media tools effectively in your day-to-day work
Part 1: Using Social Media Tools to Organize and Provide Access to Information
Delicious, Diigo, Goodreads, LibraryThing, and other tagging sites
Part 2: Organizing, Marketing, and Running Programs
Facebook, Pinterest, and other tools for engagement
Part 3: Expanding and Analyzing Community Impact
Twitter, Storify, and other microblogging resources
Part 4: Sustaining Engagement with Community Partners
Coordinating your presence and interactions across a variety of social media tools
trainer-instructional designer-presenter-consultant. Much of his work involves fostering community and collaboration face-to-face and online through libraries, other learning organizations, and large-scale community-based projects including San Francisco’s Hidden Garden Steps project, which has its origins in a conversation that took place within a local branch library. He remains active on New Media Consortium Horizon Report advisory boards/expert panels, in the Association for Talent Development (ATD–formerly the American Society for Training & Development), and with the American Library Association; adores blended learning; and remains a firm advocate of developing sustainable onsite and online community partnerships that meet all partners’ needs. He is co-author of Workplace Learning & Leadership with Lori Reed and author of the upcoming Change the World Using Social Media (Rowman & Littlefield, Autumn 2018).
70 percent of teens now say they use social media more than once a day, compared to 34 percent of teens in 2012.
Snapchat is now the most popular social media platform among teens, with 41 percent saying it’s the one use most frequently.
35 percent of teens now say texting is their preferred mode of communication with friends, more than the 32 percent who prefer in-person communication. In 2012, 49 percent of teens preferred in-person communication.
One-fourth of teens say using social media makes them feel less lonely, compared to 3 percent who say it makes them feel more lonely.
Nearly three-fourths of teens believe tech companies manipulate them to get them to spend more time on their devices and platforms.
Back in 2012, Facebook dominated the landscape, and social media was something for teens to periodically check in on.
In 2018, though, “social media” is no longer a monolith. Teens now communicate, express themselves, share experiences and ideas, rant, gossip, flirt, plan, and stay on top of current events using a mix of platforms that compete ferociously for their attention.
Sixty-three percent of teens say they use Snapchat, and 41 percent say it’s the platform they use most frequently.
Instagram, meanwhile, is used by 61 percent of teens.
And Facebook’s decline among teens has been “precipitous,” according to the new report. Just 15 percent of teens now say Facebook is their main social media site, down from 68 percent six years ago
4. Most important: As with any technology, attach social media use to clearly articulated goals for student learning
Moving from Policy to Practice
Social media isn’t a novel phenomenon requiring separate attention. Ed tech, and the tech world in general, wants to tout every new development as a revolution. Most, however, are an iteration. While we get caught up re-inventing everything to wrestle with a perceived social media sea change, our students see it simply as a part of school life.
“Social media is the future of customer service,” says Anna Yates, a content marketer for The Social Reach, a digital marketing agency. “Not only are consumers turning to social media more and more to learn about products and services, but new tools are available to make customer service faster, easier, and smarter.”
the three Ps — be patient, persistent, and polite. Companies tend to flip into “crisis” mode when you send angry messages that threaten lawsuits, bodily harm, or the end of civilization.
Colleges are increasingly using social media and other digital techniques to work with a new generation of students who want authentic connections to help them feel less isolated, as well as structures to support an efficient and driven job search and their desire to change the world,according to The New York Times.
Arshad, M., & Akram, M. S. (2018). Social Media Adoption by the Academic Community: Theoretical Insights and Empirical Evidence From Developing Countries. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 19(3). Retrieved from http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/article/view/3500
Building on the social constructivist paradigm and technology acceptance model, we propose a conceptual model to assess social media adoption in academia by incorporating collaboration, communication, and resource sharing as predictors of social media adoption, whereas perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness act as mediators in this relationship.
According to the latest social media statistics, there are more than 2 billion Facebook users, more than 300 million Twitter users, more than 500 million Google+ users, and more than 400 million LinkedIn users (InternetLiveStats, 2018).
although social media is rapidly penetrating into the society, there is no consensus in the literature on the drivers of social media adoption in an academic context. Moreover, it is not clear how social media can impact academic performance.
Social media platforms have significant capability to support the social constructivist paradigm that promotes collaborative learning (Vygotsky, 1978).
proposing a Social Media Adoption Model (SMAM) for the academic community
Social media platforms provide an easy alternative, to the academic community, as compared to official communications such as email and blackboard. my note: this has been established as long as back as in 2006 – https://www.chronicle.com/article/E-Mail-is-for-Old-People/4169. Around the time, when SCSU announced email as the “formal mode of communication).Thus, it is emerging as a new communication and collaboration tool among the academic community in higher education institutions (Roblyer, McDaniel, Webb, Herman, & Witty, 2010). Social media has greatly changed the communication/feedback environment by introducing technologies that have modified the educational perspective of learning and interacting (Prensky, 2001).
the Theory of Reasoned Action (Fishbein & Ajzen, 1975) and the Technology Acceptance Model (Davis, 1989) have been used to assess individuals’ acceptance and use of technology. According to the Technology Acceptance Model, perceived usefulness and perceived ease are the main determinants of an individual’s behavioral intentions and actual usage (Davis, 1989).
Perceived usefulness, derived from the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM), is the particular level that an individual perceives that they can improve their job performance or create ease in attaining the targeted goals by using an information system. It is also believed to make an individual free from mental pressure (Davis, 1989).
Perceived ease of use can be defined as the level to which an individual believes that using a specific system will make a task easier (Gruzd, Staves, & Wilk, 2012) and will reduce mental exertion (Davis, 1989). Venkatesh (2000) posits this construct as a vital element in determining a user’s behavior toward technology. Though generally, there is consensus on the positive effect of perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness on users’ attitude towards social media, it is not yet clear which one of these is more relevant in explaining users’ attitude towards social media in the academic community (Lowry, 2002). Perceived ease of use is one of the eminent behavioral beliefs affecting the users’ intention toward technology acceptance (Lu et al., 2005). The literature suggests that perceived ease of use of technology develops a positive attitude toward its usage (Davis, 1989).
Collaborative learning is considered as an essential instructional method as it assists in overcoming the communication gap among the academic community (Bernard, Rubalcava, & St-Pierre, 2000). The academic community utilizes various social media platforms with the intention to socialize and communicate with others and to share common interests (Sánchez et al., 2014; Sobaih et al., 2016). The exchange of information through social media platforms help the academic community to develop an easy and effective communication among classmates and colleagues (Kaplan & Haenlein, 2010). Social media platforms can also help in developing communities of practice that may help improve collaboration and communication among members of the community (Sánchez et al., 2014). Evidence from previous work confirms that social media platforms are beneficial to college and university students for education purposes (Forkosh-Baruch & Hershkovitz, 2012). Due to the intrinsic ease of use and usefulness of social media, academics are regularly using information and communication technologies, especially social media, for collaboration with colleagues in one way or the other (Koh & Lim, 2012; Wang, 2010).