Saturday, May 28, 2016

Are Social Networks Affecting Education?

This is an article I hope to share with my readers as it was written about 2 years ago by one of my High School friends, Jacob, he had written this for an old blog of mine. The post was truly one of the best we had back in the day, I hope you find it as interesting as I did.

With the rise of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and other forms of Social Media, Social Networks have grown into an influential force especially in America. It is the ability to quickly access millions of people that gives Social Networks their power. For some however, it is growing to be more of a problem than a positive influence inside class rooms.

It is true that Social Media enables the world to be constantly connected, giving individuals the power to speak with another halfway across the globe.
But are Social Networks Affecting Education?

According to a study by JCA, an institution that specializes in personal and social developments, 500 teachers have concluded that students with the poorest grades were far more active in social networking. Claims are made that students are even using internet slang such as lol, brb, or msg as a substitute to proper English grammar.

A JCA spokeswoman stated,

"Rather than relying on life experiences, educational travel and face to face interaction with others, children are becoming obsessed with social networking and this is shaping their attitudes instead. And as the teachers spell out, it is this obsession which has a direct impact on the future of our children - affecting their grades because they fail to complete their homework on time or to the standard required, and being unable to concentrate in class."

With the unstoppable growth of Social Media, it is no doubt that it's influence will continue to shape students and their educational behavior in schools. As it grows this worrying trend could become a dire issue indeed.

Some say otherwise. Some believe Social Networks can aid students with academic growth and peer to peer collaboration. Based on a research conducted by Professor Christine Greenhow from University of Maryland, students perform better due to connections with friends and their formation of stronger bonds.

“When kids feel connected and have a strong sense of belonging to the school community, they do better in school,” said Greenhow, an education professor. “They persist in school at higher rates and achieve at higher rates. ... It’s pretty promising that engaging in social networking sites could help them to develop and deepen their bonds over time.”

With the ability to connect with their fellow students for discussions of projects and other forms of school work, it is logical for Social Networks to also be a positive influence.

What is the true effect of Social Media?

For others, Social Networking is the distraction that prevents students from achieving academic growth, while some find it to be the opposite, as it only encourages collaboration and high rate academic performance. It seems the debate would last for quite awhile.