The Role of Social Media in Education
I can’t think of a student not using social media these days. As a new and unprecedented means of instant and multi-faceted communication, social media has stormed into our lives at breakneck speed. In 2018, a Pew Research Center survey found that almost 45% of surveyed teenagers (aged 13-17) are online nearly all day long. 97% use one or more social media platforms, such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat.
In addition to linking up people, social media plays a growing role in education too. Given its limitless potential, social media provides the kind of resources, tools, and opportunities that were thought to be unrealistic by any stretch of the imagination. So, how does it help advance our educational goals? What are the specific gains students can derive from social media? Let’s dive in to find out.
Better Communication Skills
Needless to say, social media helps students hone their communication skills. Given the nature of social media communication, users are forced to develop the most efficient, terse, and clear communication styles. Social media does not condone verbiage. Students are thus getting more skilled in effective communication.
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Social Media as a Learning Tool
Social media encourages self-directed learning processes. It helps students seek greater independence and self-confidence in finding answers and making decisions. It also eggs them on to connect with students outside of the classroom or college. They can thus start developing relationships that can be drawn on at a later stage when starting a professional career.
Better Exchange of Information
As students get connected, they start sharing educational resources, learning, best practices, data points, and valuable reports. Social networking erases geographical barriers and helps students benefit from the richness of cultural diversity.
Tracking various sources of data and information can be an onerous task, while most are now just a click away. Social media users are usually very good at helping each other out to identify and use the required resource materials. All of this helps students complete higher-quality and evidence-based research works, essays, term papers, and other assignments.
It Can Affect Your Academic Performance
Despite its many benefits, social media can have a negative impact on students if it becomes an obsession. This is particularly true of those who continue using social media at the expense of their studies. Overindulgence does not bode well for students because academic excellence requires hard work, discipline, and dedication. There are no shortcuts in this lengthy and multi-stage process.
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A Healthy Study-life Balance
Social media can be a lot of fun. Like other busy individuals, students must take regular breaks to unplug themselves, getting some respite from a challenging study process, multiple tests, and important assignments. Maintaining a healthy balance between their studies and social activities is key to advancing academic performance.
Social networking provides numerous opportunities for enjoyable interactions and fun activities. It’s a great way of controlling stress levels and achieving a healthy study-life balance. It can also be an effective way of managing mental stress induced by challenging school studies.
Learning About Technology
Social media users are usually tech-savvy. It is inconceivable to succeed as a student if you are not adept at using modern technological tools and resources. Social media helps sharpen your tech skills. It also helps connect people who share information about new technology, tools, apps, and information sources amongst themselves.
Social media also helps students benefit from numerous online learning resources and tools. They are able to use social media platforms to exchange information and experiences related to various learning courses.
Empowering Parents, Students, and Teachers
Social media has a large role in getting parents, teachers, and students connected. It helps empower communities to share information and experience. Lots of parents are able to stay in touch with other parents. So are many teachers and school administrators.
They all use social media for a speedy and efficient exchange of information. Some communities go so far as to use social media for fundraising purposes or for organizing extracurricular and social events.
It is difficult to overestimate the importance of social media in today’s world. It has permeated our social and academic life. College students are most affected by the charms and lures of social media, as they sometimes get overindulged.
Social media offers many benefits to students who are able to use it wisely. Diversity and speed of communication, technological advancements, and access to almost limitless resources are among the key benefits. Those who use social media prudently manage to protect themselves from its harmful influence.