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Research in Learning Technology: The Academic Journey and Experience of Students on Facebook

Social network sites have increasingly become an important part of students’ everyday lives, however, to what extent are they playing a role in the academic lives of university students? A paper, based on Dr Rebecca Vivian’s PhD research has been accepted for publication in the Research in Learning Technology Journal, Special Issue.

This paper reports on an observation of 70 university students’ use of Facebook activity, over a university semester. Content analysis was applied to students’ academic-related activity to learn about the frequency of academic activity and topics being discussed on students’ personal SNSs.

The research area has been one that the CSER group has been exploring further, in terms of analysing students’ online behaviour and interactions in teamwork and finding ways to automate this process of analysis. We will be applying what has been learned from this research and our work in analysing self-regulated learning and teamwork to investigate MOOC social media interactions and other online learning situations.

Vivian, R., Barnes, A., Geer, R. &  Wood, D (2014) ‘The Academic Journey and Experience of University Students on Facebook: An Analysis of Informal Academic-Related Activity Over a Semester’, Research in Learning Technology Special Issue, Riding Giants: How to Innovate and Educate Ahead of the Wave: Proceedings altc2014, S, Verjans & G. Wilson (eds), ALT, UK. To be released.

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