This article explains how Facebook -the most popular social network website can creatively be used in education.An example video is also included.
There are a number of unique features that make Facebook amenable to educational pursuits. For example,
Facebook is equipped with:
1. Bulletin boards
2. Instant messaging
4. Ability to post videos and pictures
5. Post information and collaborate within the system
In addition, beyond high usage rates and some technological advantages, social networks, such as
Facebook, can provide the following:
1. Numerous other pedagogical advantages to both teachers and students.
. 2. Connects students with other students, indirectly creating a learning community – a vital component of student education.
3. Provides instructors opportunities and structures by which students can help and support one another by building their courses a top the community already established by the students themselves.
4. Internet based learning modules actively engage students in a manner unique from the traditional class lecture.
5. Increases both teacher-student and student-student interaction in the form of web-based communication.
6. Helps instructors connect with their students about assignments, upcoming events, useful links, and samples of work outside of the classroom.
7. Students can use Facebook to contact classmates about questions regarding class assignments or examinations as well as collaborate on assignments and group projects in an online environment.
8. Building on the face-to-face, teacher-student relationship, social networks allow students to glimpse instructor profiles containing personal information, interests, background, and “friends,” which can enhance student motivation, affective learning, and classroom climate .
WAYS OF USING FACEBOOK IN EDUCATION
It is important for teacher and lecturers to introduce students to social networks. As an optional assignment, teachers can have students:
1. Create their own Facebook account and “become friends” with at least one other member of class.
2. Post appropriate, class-related images, messages about course assignments and events, and course applications.
3. Persuade to experiment with different features.
The Facebook platform allows developers to create Web applications that integrate with Facebook’s social network and are delivered via the Facebook Web site. Applications run on the developer’s server, and any data unique to the application is stored on the developer’s database. Although running on an independent server, Facebook applications can query Facebook data in order to take advantage of Facebook’s existing social network. Facebook users can browse available applications and enable the ones they wish to use, granting them permission to access a subset of their account data.
USAGE IN TEACHING AND LEARNING
By building tools into the Facebook social structure, you will encourage more interaction among participants. With the library tool, for example, a student who might be having trouble searching the electronic library catalog or figuring out how to use the University library system might be more inclined to ask a “friend” in the group for help or use the “Ask a Librarian” button instead of getting frustrated and giving up. Librarians can use a library Facebook application as a way to establish a personal connection with students, who we often only teach in “one-shot” library sessions. The Facebook application already developed by the Libraries can and already does provide another avenue for submitting reference questions. Nonetheless, adding features may help to increase these types of services. Overall, this type of platform can help to make the Libraries’ environment more open and accessible, thereby inviting more interaction and teaching opportunities. If we transfer the library scenario across to classroom teaching and learning, students might start sharing study tips as they discover which of the module/notes are most useful. They might recommend module/notes to each other based on needs expressed during their social interactions. All of these activities would help students improve their study skills, which will in turn enrich their academic experience and satisfaction.