As of 2019, many more students are interacting with each other in online course forums than on social media because fewer than 2.4% of faculty incorporate social media into their teaching plan. The purpose of this qualitative single-case study is to explore whether online professors are using social media to impact students with online active learning. Nine online graduate students in the United States, recruited from LinkedIn and residencies participated in this study. Five social media teaching techniques from previous research were used as the framework for the study. Data analysis process, key themes, and member checking were used, and saturation was attained. About 100% of online students use social media, and about 66.7% are on Facebook; 66.7% had professors who used social media for teaching, and 55.6% said their professor used YouTube; 33.3% used an online course platform to interact with each other, rather than social media; 66.7% felt YouTube improved their online learning experience; and 44.4% want improved security and content quality in social media.
Online online students can use videos from YouTube to broaden their knowledge about any topic being discussed in class as a supplement to their textbook.
Skype is also very useful for group meetings or group video conferencing, such as for student teams working a project or meeting with professors as a group to discuss issues, ideas, or concerns.
Online students use Facebook’s Rooms app, which they use to form study groups and to connect with each other.
Professors can find professional organizations or personalities who are experts in their field on Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and YouTube and follow their pages as well as encourage students to follow them.
Students can view different posts on these professional social media pages that may inspire them to think differently about the subject matter being learned in class.
Students can also post questions like they do on their discussion board in their online course platform, and other followers of the page or the owners can respond to their questions.
These professional social media pages can be used to complement textbooks and, in some cases, their professors when they need more information or content for their research, assignment, case studies, or quiz preparation.
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