Students in the 80s used to solve Rubix cubes, students in the 90s were brought to the concept of the internet, the naughtiest had greater knowledge with the impact of social media, and the developments have been astounding ever since. Written communication and examination will always have an importance, but due to the advent of Facebook and Twitter, our communication process has completely transformed. These are not only making a difference in our modes of connectivity but are leaving an impact on educational areas. The social revolution has widened, improved and changed the paths of young people, and they have much more ways to accomplish their goals.
Even extreme traditionalists are coping up and accepting the importance of social media, since it is the best way to reach out to the masses. Facebook happens to be the most searched engine, with personalities like Barack Obama and The Queen, having their own page.
Social media is the most advanced, fast and easy way to approach numerous people, and way different from the process of the printing press. On one hand, as news used to take several days to reach from printing to supplying, around a century ago, news articles are instantly received within microseconds. Thus, there was a revolution initiated by Gutenberg in the booking printing industry, which was transformed by Messrs Zuckerberg and Dorsey through social media in the 21st century.
Importance of Embracing Social Media:
Students can retrieve their required information, news and other important work through their smart-phones. These can be further transmitted through applications like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. These sites surely have their own set of critics and questioners, but there is a pool of information to avail at our fingertips, and that proves to be an overall aid to education.
The increasing essentiality and availability of social networking, along with the craze among youngsters, are undeniable. We use the internet like an integral part of our lives and it is surely the easiest way to communicate.
Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are not the only platforms. Some more like, StumbleUpon, PageFlakes, MySpace, Bebo, are also getting an increasing popularity. There is one aspect that social media fails to interpret – they blend the usage of textbooks and dictionaries. Moreover, they are represented in an updated version, like quick grammar detection through multimedia tools.
Gareth Spear, a researcher for Educators says “Social media gives an opportunity for students and teachers to communicate beyond school walls. Teachers can now provide customized feedback to help their students learn a little better. The days of pilled paperwork are soon to be replaced by operations of tablets and modern computers. These will allow quicker and deeper analysis of research and results.”
Teachers, lecturers and tutors who have done their hard work manually, might oppose and refrain from social networking and their aid to education, but it is surely a commendable approach, that should be considered by all. Having rubbers on the back of a pencil or even using pocket calculators were much criticized to be signs of laziness during 80’s and 90’s. However, they were soon applauded for freeing time, which could be utilized for more tutorial sessions. It is just a wait of around a decade more to see how education is partially or completely depended on technology and social media.
The revolution of social media is taking teachers towards new innovations, where they are also learning and adapting to the norms. According to the academics, it is becoming easier for them to embrace technology and convey their aid to the students. It is a fact that the current generations, and the ones to come, are going to be acquainted with iPad, computer screen and another interactive medium, while OHP, blackboard or whiteboard become history.
Disadvantages of Social Media:
Unfortunately, with all the advantages of social media, there are going to be drawbacks that have to be dealt with. This is quite a crucial part as it is related to education and growth. Privacy and bullying are common problems of social networking sites, which can be reduced to a limit, but not avoided completely.
While on one hand bullying is a probable and common way of harassing students, there are more chances of being bullied in a school bus than on social media! Similarly, calling names can be strictly controlled within a school campus, but not on Twitter or MySpace. It will surely take you a little more to punish the guilty, because it is virtual world and there are several processes till the final call. None-the-less, cyberbullying cannot be a reason to refrain or avoid the advantages on social media in education.
Differentiation the Good and the Bad:
Many schools have blocked social networking sites, which might lead to a cause of worry, sooner or later. It is blamed to compromise the education of a majority as this is a misguided behavior by the minority. It is wise to teach students about what is right and what is wrong, than banning educational tools!
It is advisable to acquire and utilize the benefits of social media towards education, which will ultimately add to the lives of the students and their career. Teachers might not like or cope with every bit of the changes, but educations is transforming onto processing information rather than remembering huge content and formulas. These are easily retrievable and their brains need to function much more productively.
Teachers will soon be required to supervise what the World Wide Web bestows upon us, rather than going through every nook and cranny of every chapter they are to teach. This is the most important change that will be met for the 21st-century students.
Thus to conclude, it is good to acknowledge and embrace the goodness and aid of social media, and know how to use it wisely. It can take all of us a step ahead towards our dreams and achievements. Twitter, Facebook and other important social networking, are not only for better communication, but to help you learn and know a lot more. It is going to widen by the years, so it is smarter to keep all the important tabs open.