Integrating “SocialMedia Etiquette” in ICT Education
Information and Communications Technology classes or ICT are geared towards learning the basics and the advancements. It’s inclined to facilitate the students’ gaining of practical ICT skills, as well as, fostering sustainable interest.
But how about examining the consistent behaviour ICT users, like students, tend to exhibit?
Okay, it could get uncomfortable now. Such behaviour tends to tap on the user’s motives, expectations, as well as, the trending behaviour deemed acceptable among students’ peers.
But if teachers and other education professionals strongly believe that their students are capable of pursuing a more discipline path towards ICT use, this behavioural approach for studying ICT should be carefully considered.
In such approach, education professionals may be able to cross two famous facets, the SocialMedia Etiquette and User-Orientation (the article will, however, focus on the former).
good portion of college and university students are actively using one or more social media networks for a variety of reasons – communication being the top one. Before you go ahead tackling about social media-associated behaviours, ground it with the basics and interesting fun facts. These may come as report assignments, game, exercises, debate and other creative pursuits:
- A brief profile for each social media network – with a focus on the principal objective of a social media network (apart from commercial or economical purposes of bringing profit)
- Categorising social media networks (people, techies, photography junkie, employment, interests, and so on)
- Positive and negative results of social media network-use
Using the insights and apt factual background taken from these primers, teachers may ask students to enumerate all kinds of behaviour associated with social media networks. Letting the students get to point out these things are essential – because they occupy a huge share in the social media bandwagon.
The role of teachers in this behavioural study lies in helping students identify the acceptable social media behaviour (known as social media etiquette). A lot of these etiquettes can be sourced out from traditional conversational etiquettes, like staying polite, hearing out the other or expressing things through proper vocabulary.
The same can be said of major no-no’s: no cussing or profanities, no criticising of another’s argument, post, or tweet without substantive bases, and definitely, no bullying.
- Should the student-user optimise the Report Abuse option?
- Should the student-user block the user and delete the post?
- Should the post be ignored?
Each of these choices have inevitable effects of which should be brought to students attention and reflection. The last choice, for example, may imply that ‘posting of unflattering images’ is encouraged (even if the student chooses to ignore it).
Ultimately, social media etiquette is not just for discussion; it is expected to influence student behaviours, leaning towards discipline. It is this discipline that makes up the structure university, colleges and other education institutions rely upon to wield values for students to actively adopt in this technological world.
Manuela Theissen is an educator whose expertise lies in both IT and writing. A radical inside the classroom, she prefers to infuse creative exercises to ensure that students get more practical skills and an unwavering interest for learning things, both old and new. Her downtime is usually spent in yoga-practises.