Research Nugget #2

Source 1. Why “Teach” Social Media by Karen Richardson

Richardson, K. (2014, July 3). Why “Teach” Social Media. . Retrieved July 7, 2014, from


Main Claim: 

Karen Richardson thinks children should be taught social media at a young age for many reasons. She says social media is, “the way we communicate these days”. She also uses a great example of how not knowing how to use social media properly can result in losing a job. She uses “When Young Teachers Go Wild on the Web” as en example of how this happens. She says social media is a great way to connect with whatever your passion is and follow influential people that can teach students a great deal.


1. “This post is in response to Maryam Kaymanesh in the VCU thoughtvectors MOOC who is thinking about why high school students should be taught how to use social media for a future job. I wouldn’t have seen the post but Tom Woodward tagged me in his reply to her and I got a ping to alert me to the reference. Why mention this? Because it gets at the heart of why we need to “teach” social media: it IS the way we communicate these days, and we have always taught students how to use contemporary media.”

This is a great example of a personal experience that shows how social media is so beneficial for education. If Karen had not gotten the notification about my research project, I would have never had the opportunity to read her blog post that she created just because of that notification. She says social media, “is the way we communicate these day”. This is another reason she believes it is important for students to know how to use social media properly as well.

2. “When I started teaching high school English in the late 1980s, my curriculum included formal letter writing and research skills using paper databases like the Readers’ Guide to Periodical Literature. I think we understand better why we need to teach students the research skills, but it’s 21st century writing that we grapple with as teachers roll their eyes when kids use emoticons or Internet slang in their research papers. Case in point: check out the Wikipedia entry on LOL. The authors spend a lot of time quoting the critics of the use of these abbreviations as inappropriate in formal writing. But they certainly have a place in the fast-paced, shortened world of Twitter and texting. So, lesson one for all 21st century writers is how to distinguish between the wide variety of writing outlets and the kind of writing they demand.

This nugget shows how internet slang is frowned upon. This is very important because students unknowingly use internet slang in academical papers and is not correct. If students were taught properly how to separate internet slang from academical writing than this would not be as big of an issue. Internet slang is not bad, it is just not good to use in academical writing. In the internet world, slang is a great way to share information quickly and to use less characters. A good example of where this may be used is Twitter.

3. There are also important questions for businesses to ask as they move into this hyper connected world. As someone who runs an organization that uses social media to both communicate and connect, I think about how to use it all the time. What do we want to do with it beyond just simple marketing? How can we become a portal to help curate the web for our followers? It is very much a similar kind of question to that for individuals: just how do we portray our company in social media? I can pretty much guarantee that unless your future job is hermit, you will, either as an employee or employer, ask these kinds of questions.

This nugget talks about how media can do more than just chit chat. It can be used to market, not only ones self, but a business or idea to the public. This is important because Karen Richardson is basically saying that at one point and time, students will have to use social media for college and if not for college, than for their future professional career. This is one more reason to back up why students should understand how to use social media properly before they hit college.

Source 2. Social Media in Your Classroom – How you can make it work and why it may be a good idea by Carol Bauer

Bauer, C. (2012, June 1). Social Media in Your Classroom. . Retrieved July 8, 2014, from

social media 2

Main Claim:

Carol Bauer talks about how social media can be good or bad for the classroom. She has a lot of difficulty with students being glued to their phones while they should be paying attention to what she is saying instead, but at the same time the social media platforms can be used to have up to date information about what is going on. Students will also be able to stay connected with each other through social media as well. Like a learning community.


1. “The answer, I think, is that it can be both. If done with thoughtful and conscientious planning, students and teachers can use social networks to enhance instruction. In addition, new technology also provides a wonderful opportunity to do what teachers do best: model appropriate behavior and lifelong learning.”

This nugget talks about how social media and new technology can “enhance instruction”. Say a student loses their printed out version of a syllabus, thank goodness for computers and blackboard to help that student stay connected with all of the information in that class. Now they can jump online and print out a brand spankin new syllabus. Another example would be if a student forgot what the professor said the homework was in class. That student can then tweet to the professor and ask for the instructions. Once that professor responds it will be online for anyone else to read that may have forgotten the instructions as well.

2. “Social media can also be a valuable teaching tool in another area: It allows a teacher to tackle head-on one of the most challenging—but vital—lessons needed for students growing up surrounded by this rapidly-changing technology.  Students need to know not only how to use these new resources, but how to use them appropriately. It’s essential that they acquire the skills to be responsible digital citizens by respecting and acknowledging the work of others and having necessary consideration for the privacy of others.”

In this passage, Carol Bauer talks about how it is so important for students to learn how to use online resources properly. Now that you can read a majority of information online and not have to use a library there are many copyright and plagiarism issues with students. A lot of the time the plagiarism is not intentional. Bauer says it is also important for the students to acknowledge the work of others. This is where the idea of a learning community comes into play. If students are constantly giving each other feedback and bouncing ideas off of each other, they will be facing a much more interactive and educational experience.

3. “Because students make frequent use of technology at home, the line between what’s done there and what’s done at school has been blurred. So a good digital citizen must learn to be responsible in both places. Teachers can model appropriate digital usage by incorporating social media in the classroom in an open and honest way.

This is an issue that comes up in using social media in the classroom a lot. Teachers are worried about whether or not their students are using the social media for educational purposes or personal purposes. This raises the question of how could the help students define a line between personal and education use. What is appropriate for the classroom setting and what is not? Her suggestion is, “Teachers can model appropriate digital usage by incorporating social median in the classroom in an open and honest way”. This is a good way for teachers to set an example, but would it be the ultimate solution?

Source 3. Beyond the Electronic Portfolio: A Lifetime Personal Webspace by EDUCAUSE

Cohn, E., & Hibbitts, B. (2004, November 4). Beyond the Electronic         Portfolio: A Lifetime Personal Web Space. . Retrieved July 8,            2014, from

 social media 3

Main Claim:

This article focuses on how creating electronic portfolios that can work as an archive as well could help students a lot. An issue this article discusses is how teaching college students how to use these programs may take away from the students learning other important curricular with their time instead. A good solution to this issue would be to add classes to learn how to manage media in high school rather than waiting till college. This article also discusses many pros and cons to an electronic portfolio. It may be easier to share, but it does not have the same personal feeling as a physical portfolio.


1. “The electronic portfolio (e-portfolio) is higher education’s new “got to have it” tool—the show-and-tell platform of the millennium. Hundreds of academic institutions are variously studying, using, or innovating e-portfolio systems. Indeed, the current e-portfolio movement is spawning new university committees; on-campus training modules, books, campus-wide information campaigns, jobs, and a potentially profitable industry niche for software companies and consultants. Moreover, faculty and institutions that adopt e-portfolios appear cutting edge and innovative to their colleagues and students.

This nugget talks about how electronic portfolios are found important by universities. Universities are even trying to develop better electronic portfolio programs. This can possibly help students keep their work organized for future references or even job applications.

2. “E-portfolios seem to be inherently “good.” Instructional designers tell us that the process of constructing an e-portfolio stimulates our students to engage in reflective thinking. E-portfolios will provide accreditation agencies with tangible evidence that students achieved standards-based outcomes. New graduates will use e-portfolios to showcase their creativity and accomplishments, notably to gain an edge in the job market. Not surprisingly, university career placement centers regard the e-portfolio movement as an opportunity to link academic outcomes to the workplace.

Creating a portfolio does make someone reflect a lot. Students have to pick out what they believe is worth sharing with peers and future employers. “New graduates will use e-portfolios to showcase their creativity and accomplishments, notably to gain an edge in the job market”. This is another reason why it is important for students to know how to use social media. If they take the time to develop a portfolio over the entire period of time they are working instead of right before a job interview, it will most likely be much nicer and detailed and well put together.



The first source I talked about explained why social media should be taught to students today from a personal experience the author had. The second source I wrote about also wrote from a personal experience. The first source was personal and casual like the second source as well. They both also discuss very specific topics. They talk about how social media should be taught to students although it can have both positive and negative side.

The third source is incredibly different from the first two sources. It is extremely specific and analytical about all of the pros and cons to using electronic portfolios. This is a scholarly source written to promote the idea of creating better electronic portfolios to improve the use of media for students and professionals.

All three of the sources talk about how the proper use of social media can result to finding a future profession. The discuss the importance of being connected with people who share the same interests and and agree in the end that social media should be used for educational purposes.

2 thoughts on “Research Nugget #2”

  1. You’ve written a detailed synthesis of the various sources. I’m looking forward to digging into your other sourves, but I wanted to provide a quick follow up to my post: I had the opportunity to pose your question to a group of educators gathered for professional development. With nearly 60 mostly K-12 teachers in the room, the answer was resoundingly “yes” to whether we need to teach social media. They thought we should start even earlier than high school, and they also agreed that teachers need to be learning appropriate uses right along with the students. I was struck that this is an area where teachers and students can be real co-learners in an evolving technologically complex world. There are no experts; instead, we are problem solving as events unfold, creating definitions and defining boundaries.

    It was also cool to hear examples of teachers using social media to support learning. A history teacher described having her students tweet during the state of the union address, using a class hash tag to share with their classmates while also following the tweets of others. Their observations were part of the 1.7 million tweets sent during the state of the union. Social media allowed them to be more engaged in government, adding their voices in a way that has never been available before. It is powerful to teach about social media by using social media for learning and helping students find their way.

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