Welcome to The CITE -- a blog on Course materials, Innovation, and Technology in Education, created by Mark Nelson and now part of the Publications Department of the National Association of College Stores. CITE is a pun with multiple meanings - referring to cite as in citation, something people reference; site as in location, website, or place people go to; and sight as in foresight or looking ahead to what is coming. Comments, discussion, feedback and ideas are welcome.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Students Can Learn Together on Facebook

Researchers at Baylor University found that Facebook may provide a key to better learning, particularly in larger classes. They studied 218 students in an introductory sociology course who were given the choice of being in a course-related Facebook group.

The study, Using Facebook to Engage Learners in a Larger Introductory Course, found that the students in the Facebook group did better on quizzes and tests and wrote stronger papers than those who just listened to lectures. The students in the Facebook group also reported a more positive overall experience in the class, according to a report in Campus Technology.

“Although some teachers may worry that social media distracts students from legitimate learning, we found that our Facebook group helped transform students from anonymous spectators into a community of active learners—and this has important consequences for student performance,” said Kevin Dougherty, associate professor of sociology at Baylor. 

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