Thursday, August 28, 2008

Facebook in Education

It's one of the more popular social networking sites among students, so here are a few articles about using it in education settings.

Teachers use Facebook to reach students: A brief article posted on, a site operated by The Canadian Press, in which a high school teacher in Halifax explains how he uses Facebook in his teaching.

Blackboard Sync: "Blackboard Sync is an application that delivers Blackboard course information and updates through the Facebook interface to keep students in touch and engaged with their academic studies. CLASSMATES NETWORK: Blackboard Sync enables students to connect with their classmates through Facebook, thus creating social learning opportunities. SAFE SYNC: Blackboard Sync offers several options for participation to give the institutions as much control as they need."

Will Colleges Friend Facebook? This article talks about Schools, a Facebook application for education, developed by Inigral. "Schools upends the traditional application framework. Rather than make it available to anyone with a Facebook account, the service is based on partnerships with individual colleges that pay to allow their students access. The colleges then provide Inigral with constantly updated data feeds that allow the application to stay current with courses, clubs and other activities that students can join.... Abilene Christian University, which is already in a private beta testing phase and is set to deploy the application over the fall semester, has already gained publicity by handing out free iPhones to its incoming freshman class and being one of the earlier adopters of Google’s Apps for Education program. Kevin Christian, the university’s director of strategic partnerships, says that the university is finding it can have the benefits of 'living within the Facebook world' without ignoring 'prudent concern to retain Facebook as a true social networking site.”'Much as the university is planning to do with its new army of iPhones, Christian said some faculty members were planning on making use of the newly adopted technology in their classrooms."

Educational Uses of Facebook: That heading is for just one section of this excellent Wiki about Facebook at LTC (Learning Technologies Center). Ignatia Webs calls it "the superb wiki of George Siemens on Facebook and its benefits as a social network service. This wiki was one of the results of a workshop he did on facebook at the University of Manitoba. The wiki gives a nice overview of when which social network was started. After that he zooms into Facebook with a good analyses on pro's and cons if you want to use it in a corporate or other environment for educational reasons."

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