I am doing a project for my web 2.0 class in school, and I am trying to figure out what is better to be able to use in the class room, twitter or facebook?

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Hi.  I am pursuing a masters in Educational Technology and a recent class revolved around Twitter.  It was a great way to post information quickly and to the point.  My professor said that a colleague of his used Twitter when she took her students on a field trip to a museum.  The students post their thoughts about the pieces to a hash tag.  A student-friendly program that is like facebook is Edmodo.  You can set it up free for your class and control the privacy settings so you won't have intruders.  

It depends on what you're looking for.

Twitter provides a fantastic way to distribute information and follow people without requiring you to sacriface too much on privacy.  i.e. I can create an account with any name/alias and not have to disclose where I live, address, etc... I can even set it so only those I approve of can follow me.  Now I can follow a school class without having to worry about others really knowing who I am (I can lurk) and particpate without too much risk of looking foolish.  You also don't need a Twitter account to look at what someone is tweeting which is a benefit to some situations.

 

There's a lot more exposure on Facebook and although you don't have to provide a whole lot of information, because the registration process asks for personal information students/users are more apt to provide it and not understand the privacy settings/implications for the service.  You can have more indepth discussions on Facebook since you don't have the character limit but you're pretty much forced to have an account to just observe a conversation/thread.  You may have difficulty, depending on your institution's social media policy, to actually force someone to create a Facebook account to participate in your class.

 

Also consider who actually owns the information your posting on public Social Networking sites - you may find it surprising that the service provider actually can use your photos, posts, files, etc... for their own use (i.e. advertising, R&D, etc.)  You may wish to consider setting up a blog/website somewhere where you are in control over how the content is utilized and use social networking sites to broadcast and drive students to where the information is located (alternatively, drive them back to your course in your LMS).

 

try edmodo which is like facebook.  Is this for grad school or students?  But either way edmodo is what I would go by.  Twitter is just too limited.  You can find resources in Twitter.  I guess it depends on what you are trying to get out of it.  We tried Twitter with my grad course but all we did was posted on our hash tag resources and it was pretty interesting--both the process and the resources that we posted there.

You'll also need to consider how public you want to me and where people are going for information.  If you're main goal is a private social network, then something like Edmodo is good as it provides you that walled garden (i.e. for those who are under the age of 13 that are protected under legislation).  If you're targetting your class and don't mind if those outside of the class (and all over the world) contribute to the conversation then a more public network may be the route you go.

 

There are some great stats from the Pew Internet and American Life project (http://www.pewinternet.org/) showing how many students in higher education have which type of social networking account (http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/Technology-and-social-netwo...); adding another social network account may be the largest barrier for network you want to use i.e. if you leverage networks that students and users already have, the odds that you'll reach them are probably better because they are visiting them frequently.  If you choose a private network, you may find that people need to be reminded to go and visit.

 

All depends on your needs, age of audience, publicity and reach you want.

 

Hi Skye, I think that is a good question, but it might be hard to use either of those sites in school. If you were able to use one of the sites, I personally think Facebook is the way to go. While Twitter gives you information quickly, I think Facebook allows you to get more information, and get detailed information otherwise unavailable on Twitter.

Most students (and teachers) use facebook and twitter for social reasons.  I think it is easier to separate professional and social intentions on twitter.  Using hash tags and separate user names are easy ways to use twitter for educational purposes.

Back in 2009, Pew Internet reports that services like Twitter are mostly used by young adults age 18-24 (http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2010/Social-Media-and-Young-Adul...). Most likely this generation is used to SMS text messaging which makes this service very attractive; facebook seems more attractive to older adults who many not have had large exposure to SMS (my opinion).  But based on your experience it seems this seems to hold true at least from a stats point of view.

 

Now as a new generation are starting to have kids that are going to school you may find you may need to take a combination approach and using multiple social networks to communicate to parents i.e. Twitter and Facebook to ensure any notifications you need to send to them are connecting; there are tons of free tools that allow you to manage multiple accounts as a whole like Tweetdeck and Hootsuite and allow you to post and comment to responses without having to access each account seperately.

I think both has different purpose. twitter is more appropriate for short messages, and tweets. can be used by teacher for guidance. facebook has more capacity and range to adjust applications. What is the topic of project? is it an ICT class? which subject/s you want to teach or is it cross curricular?

Hi Skye,

I think it depends on what you are using the application for.... Twitter is a simple way to have open communication with parents and students-updating parents about what is going on in the classroom, reminding students about homework assignments, sharing relative links to subject matter, etc. Facebook is great too because it seems to provide different ways to communicate with others, easily share posts, have more in-depth discussions, and can even be used much like a blog. Of course, edmodo also has similar functions that Facebook has, but is much more secure than facebook. However, if security isn't an issue, Facebook is convenient in that many people already have accounts.

Unfortunately both of these are blocked in my district.  You may want to check before you get too involved with planning your project.  Personally I think twitter is safer to use and you can give specific guidelines on twitter.  Something about facebook I just don't think it is safe to use between teacher and student.  You might want to look into Edmondo instead of facebook for you project.

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