International Journal of Social Media and Interactive Learning Environments (8 papers in press)
Design for Blended Synchronous Learning Using Video Conferencing: A Design-based Research
by Qiyun Wang, Choon Lang Quek
Abstract: In this study, a blended synchronous learning environment was created for a group of Master students to take a course. Most of the students came to the classroom to take lessons every week. Meanwhile, a few students were allowed to join the classroom instructional process by using video conferencing at homes or workplaces. The purpose of this study was to find out what challenges the remote students and the instructor met in the blended synchronous learning sessions and what strategies could be effectively used to address the challenges. Results showed that the engagement level of the remote students was low, and they had difficulties in communicating with the classroom students and asking questions. Some activities happening in the classroom were also difficult for them to observe and participate. Nevertheless, some students liked the way of attending lessons as it could save them much travel time. Also, it was hard for the instructor to pay attention to the remote students, and the instructor needed to adjust presentation slides so that important information would not be covered by streaming videos. Some useful strategies included partnership, regularly monitoring the understanding of remote students, using two cameras and two mics, and sound control and coordination.
Keywords: Blended learning, video conferencing, design-based research, synchronous learning
Meeting the Challenges of the New Business Universe through Virtual Collaborative Learning
by Owen Hall Jr.
Abstract: The world of virtual collaborative learning is now becoming the new norm throughout higher education in general, and at schools of business in particular. Under growing pressure from the business universe, business educators are in the process of radically altering the content and delivery of management education. Today, the business community is looking for web-savvy, problem-solving graduates who can immediately contribute upon joining the firm. To meet these and related financial issues, many schools of business are increasingly turning to the web as a vehicle for enhancing student learning opportunities and outcomes. Faculty engagement in this new learning zeitgeist is essential. The purpose of this paper is to highlight how virtual collaborative learning can be used to prepare students to meet the challenges of an uncertain job market and to outline strategies for implementing this revolutionary learning process throughout the management education community of practice.
Keywords: Virtual collaborative learning, social media, management education, implementation strategies, Web 2.0+, Haptics, Heutagogy
SOCIAL MEDIA USAGE AND ITS IMPACT ON READING HABITS: A STUDY OF KOFORIDUA POLYTECHNIC STUDENTS
by Micheal Owusu -Acheaw
Abstract: The study investigates the use of social media by students of Koforidua Polytechnic and its impact on their reading habits. Questionnaire was administered on a sample of the students to gather data and information. The data was quantitatively analyzed with the aid of Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS). Out of a total of 1,050 questionnaires administered, 852 responses were retrieved representing 80.98%. The study revealed that 92.72% of respondents visit social media sites every day and spent between 30 minutes to 3 hours, while 66.78% respondents indicated that the use of social media affected their reading habits. In addition, 81.92% of the respondents indicated they had not read novels or fiction within the last two semesters. The study revealed that there is a relationship between time spent on social media and reading habits and that constant use of social media leads to low reading habits. The study recommended that faculty staff should encourage students to spend less time on the social media sites and rather should be encouraged to channel more of their time and energies towards educational purposes. The study further recommended that Students should read a minimum of two novels or fiction during a semester as well as introduction of communication skills to 200/300level students.
Keywords: Social Networks, Tertiary Institution, Reading Style, Reading Interest, Information Literacy. rn
Investigating the barriers to technology integration in Singaporean Junior Colleges
by Kim Chun Kuang
Abstract: This survey examines the perceptions of 27 teachers on the barriers to technology integration (pedagogical beliefs, technology beliefs, school level, and system level factors) to support the implementation of interactive-constructive learning activities within constructivist pedagogical approaches to enhance the teaching and learning of mathematics in the Singapore-Cambridge General Certificate of Education Advanced Level course. Several barriers were identified and their possible relationships are discussed with implications to strategies which can help foster an environment that supports teachers decisions to integrate technology. Further research directions are discussed together with the findings and limitations of the study.
Keywords: Singapore; junior colleges; mathematics; technology integration; barriers; ICAP framework
Adolescents Motives on using Social Network Sites An Empirical Study on Egypt and Germany
by Sara Eldeeb, Tamer Awad
Abstract: Based on uses and gratifications (UG) perspective, this study examines the motives of adolescents social network sites (SNS) use across Egypt and Germany. It focuses on three of the most popular SNS sites in terms of both consumer usage and marketer interest; Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. Exploratory study was conducted utilizing mixed method approach. 250 and 215 responses attained through self-administered surveys, were collected from Egypt and Germany respectively. For post verification, semi structured interviews were conducted with 13 Egyptian and 15 German adolescents through theoretical sampling technique. Results revealed that social interaction is a major motive among both Egypt and Germany indicating that marketers should focus on consumer engagement. This study provides preliminary findings on motivation to SNS usage in two different cultures and further develops the UG theory, giving it more prominence within the area of social media.
Keywords: Uses and Gratifications; Social Network Sites; Adolescents; Germany; Egypt
Episodic Social Media Impact on Users
by Samuel Doss, Deborah Carstens, Stephen Kies
Abstract: With the abundance of technological devices, an increasing number of users of all ages rely on social media. There is a growing concern of the impact that technology has on the user community. This research study was conducted to explore these concerns and specifically whether individuals characteristics are impacted from the use of social media. A total of 209 respondents from a private university in the southeast participated in the study. Self-administered questionnaires were implemented with the survey instrument developed by the researchers. Five hypotheses were tested on the relationships of social media technologies with attention span, time pressure, long-term orientation, polychromic attitude index, and sociability. The research findings suggest that there is no difference in attention spans or sociability in frequent or infrequent users of social media. Furthermore, the research findings suggest that episodic social media usage is not positively correlated to the long-term orientation, time pressure scale, and polychromic attitude index. Future areas of research are also discussed.
Keywords: Social media; sociability; attention span; time pressure; long-term orientation; polychromic attitude index.
TweetBoard A Case Study of Developing a Micro-Blogging Platform for Higher Education
by Shao Cheh (Joyce) Hsu, Kok Siew (Benjamin) Gan, Jin Lee, Shu Hui (Sheryl) Lim, Xie Yan (Jeremy) Lim, Sherman Tan Si Xian, Thomas Menkhoff, C Jason Woodard, Qiu Cheng Yap
Abstract: This paper reports experiences made at an Asian university in developing a social media platform based on Twitter in the context of a final year capstone project where information systems management students get an opportunity to solve a real-world problem for a real client. In this case study, the challenge was provided by a Faculty members request for an interactive social media application which engages less outspoken students in class via a social medium they are familiar with: Twitter. We reconstruct the projects evolution, describe the main features of the application called TweetBoard and share lessons learned in developing a new pedagogical micro-blogging tool in support of students learning.
Keywords: Twitter (micro-blogging), higher education, blended learning, pedagogy, Singapore
An investigation of the use of mobile devices for learning in Singapore preschools
by Wing Sum Cheung, Khe Foon Hew , Siew Lian Chua
Abstract: Given the rapid increasing functional features of mobile devices, there are increasing interests of preschool educators and researchers in engaging students with mobile learning. The purpose of this study is to investigate how preschool principals, teachers and parents in Singapore perceive the values of using smart mobile devices for learning in preschools, and what are their perceptions toward the potential use of mobile devices as learning tools in preschools and if ‘Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)’ model is implemented, what are their opinions and concerns towards this new initiative. rnThis study used questionnaire survey and interview to collect relevant information for the investigation. Its findings would capture true experiences showcasing the actual and potential use of smart mobile devices for learning by pre-schoolers. The critical role that preschool principals, teachers and parents should play in integrating these smart mobile devices in their daily activities for learning were discussed and emphasized.
Keywords: Preschool, Mobile Devices, Pre-schoolers, Preschool education.