Monday, February 21, 2011

Facebook Follow Up

Last semester I asked readers their opinion about instructors and students being friends on Facebook. The responses varied in nature, but all agreed that Facebook is an issue worthy of further discussion.

These replies motivated me to set up a Facebook for my public speaking students in two classes. The site only has one picture of me and I update the site weekly with links to class related Websites and Facebook apps. In the announcements area of my classes the link is posted and in an email I instructed the students to friend me if they so wanted. Out of 37 students, 12 have friended me. I have also advised them that when the semester is over I will "defriend" them.

So, I ask you, if an instructor had a Facebook just for the class, would you be more inclined to friend the instructor? Do you think that Facebook should even be a part of higher education? What are your concerns, if any, about being friends with an Instructor?

Click here to view the discusson from last semester!

27 comments:

Kaleigh Hubbard said...

I do not think facebook is a tool for teachers to use. Does every single thing have to be about work? Some people are against facebook entirely and it can be tampered with. Facebook is for social reasons and should be left immature and farce. School and social life does not need to intertwine.

vryan said...

I do not think facebook should be used as a tool for teaching or that teachers should incorporate it in the classroom. It is a social network and we have angel to communicate with our peers and instructors.

Anonymous said...

I do not think that Facebook should be used for educational purposes. Facebook is made more for outside the classroom, rather than in the classroom. Right now using Angel and Pipeline to contact instructors as well as peers has turned out to be more effective.

Deborah said...

I do not believe as an instructor that I would use Facebook for my class. I agree that it is more of a social tool and should be left as such. One of my concerns would be the security issues that Facebook has encountered. I agree that Angel and the Pipeline are better communication methods.

Kathleen said...

I think that on the side of the students, I wouldnt want my teacher knowing all of my personal business. People post things to facebook for their friends to read, and providing that they have the privacy blockers on, they probably do not want to be concerned if the teacher is going to read it!
From the teachers standpoint, I could see how it could be useful. Mainly because students read facebook almost daily, and they would be sure to notice if you posted something on there for class.

Anonymous said...

While I think that my private life should be just that, I also feel that when you can make a connection to your students you can get a greater response from them when they are learning. I created a second account that I use for students to be able to chat with me, or play games. I wasn't going to do that but when I got a request on my personal one from a student that was moving on to middle school and knowing that student had a questionable home life I decided I needed to. Sometimes the students just need to see you as a real person and not always a teacher. I like to post comments about what book either I have just read and liked or I ask them to tell me about some they have read in hopes that they will find a good book to read just so they can share.

Brandy said...

I do not personally believe that Facebook should be a required part of any class. I would add my instructor as a friend for the sake of getting to know others in my class, but not for a means of communication regarding school work. I don't have any concerns about being friends with an Instructor.

Ashleigh Greene said...

I think that it is completly on unethical for teachers to utilize facebook and friend their students. There are too many personal boundaries that are being violated. I also feel that it can create many issues. There should be a strict boundary that needs to be kept. Many things on facebook can be taken out of context and remember that facebook is a social networking site and can easily be manipulated.

Debra said...

My thoughts are if a teacher would like to set a facebook account for her students to engage in receiving homework or help on an assignment that’s O.K. However to using facebook as a social would cross the boundary. As an instructor and a student I would feel uncomfortable. Remember the social network has hurt future employment and friendship there is the gray line with ethics one might cross?

Brittney Hamilton said...

Personally, I have had students ask me to "friend" them on facebook and I have always said no...granted they are 10 years old and aren't even old enough to be on facebook. As a student, I don't think I would be likely to add an instructor on facebook. The whole point of facebook is for social reasons, why take the fun out of it and worry about your teacher reading your personal life? There are also a ton of legal issues revolving around facebook and the work place. I just say keep them seperate to be safe.

mary barr said...

There is some good reasons why students and teachers should not be friends, like know them personally. but good reason for them to be friends is they can communicate faster.

penny said...

I dont think facebook should be used as tool for school. Although that is probaly the one site that most people are on every day there for if something came up they would not miss it. I think that facebook should stay just as a socail tool.thank you Penny Angleton

Myra Clark said...

I personally think that Facebook is not a good thing to use for use with work or school. I think there should be something online strictly for personal reasons. Why can't there be something online that doesn't involve the increase in someone's business standing? Just like there needs to be a separation of Church and State, there should be a separation of personal and business in those areas such as Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, and/or Linked-In.

Casey Murphy said...

I do not believe it is appropriate for students and teachers to be communicating on Facebook. I personally do not want my teacher to know me on that level. I have my Facebook set to all private so that only my friends and family can see my information and post. Facebook is very informal and personal. I would not want my teacher or any professional relationship to me to see the things I say on Facebook. I believe that if a teacher wants to have a Facebook page for her class she should leave it open to the public. So the students can frequent it often, but still maintain a balance between personal life and professional life.

Megan said...

Facebook is a very handy tool, especially in the fast pace word we live in. But I believe that it is for more of a social tool, and not for work or school. Now with that said I have become friends with pervious classmates, and it has been a great help if there is a question about an assignment. But we have also have Butler and Angel accounts that can be used to talk with our instructors and classmates. I think there has to be some separation between work, school and having a personal life.

LisaW said...

Facebook is a social network - it was not created for business or professional fields. They do have privacy and settings that allow for information to be private for followers -
I anticipate that administrators across the country and will address what teachers can/can't do within Facebook.

The Facebook format can be too informal and personal - even if a member does not realize what and how much info they are sharing.

I would recommend findinganother avenue for educators to use that would support the instructors needs & objectives.

Ashley said...

I beleive that Facebook should not be used for a way to communicate between students and teachers. The Facebook site is a social network and even if the teacher does not post things about their personal life, you are sure to find personal thigns about the students. I think the school's website, such as Angel is used for emailing the teacher if the studetns has any questions and, and for the teaher to give any needed updates and I've found that works fine.

Danielle said...

I believe that If the teacher used it as a teaching and interaction tool for the class, then it is O.K. It was optional for the students to join. Fact of the matter is social media is a growingly larger part of our world. It seemed that the facebook group was strictly for class purposes as long as the teacher doesn't cross any teacher/student boundaries.

Alyssa Christie said...

I have no issue with friending a teacher on facebook but I don't think that I would be very likely to use be friends with my teacher on facebook. Inmay be more likely to become friends with my teacher if it were an on campus class because it may help me as a resource but for online classes I would not.

Amanda Dragoo said...

I think that if the facebook page is directly related to the classroom then it would be okay to friend a teacher on facebook; however, if it is only for personal reasons then I do not think it is very professional. Going back to my comment about it only being okay if it is directly related to class, I think that in today's society it is very normal for teachers to use any and all new technology to keep the classroom fun and entertaining!

Christin Covel said...

Facebook. Facebook is most certainly a social network to say the least. People are on there to stay in touch with long distance family and friends. Or even friends in town that are hard to keep in touch with on a day to day basis. Having a "friendship" with an instructor on facebook can be good and bad. Good because students are on facebook more than they should be doing homework. Facebook friendships would allow them to keep track of resources and assignments with the instructor. Though, it's bad because a student has the right to keep things private from whomever they wish. Sometimes students do not wish to share their lives with instructors. Though, this is definitely an individuals own feeling. They are free to share whatever they would like. I feel that being friends on facebook is completely up to the student and should not be required.

Anonymous said...

I think it is fine to be friends with your instructor. I don't see the point though because you can always access them through Angel. If you are going to be friends with them on Facebook, I would go through pictures and comments to make sure there was nothing there I didn't want my instructor to see or read.

Sierra said...

I do not think that Facebook should be used for school. Some people do not like having people they don't know on a personal level on their facebook for personal reasons. I think that Angel and Pipeline is a much better source to communicat for school purposes.

Anonymous said...

Facebook should not be used or required in any school setting. This is a social networking site not a social learning site. Many people have been burn and not gotten jobs because an employer or ex-girlfreind-boyfriend has found the facebookpage or blog and found some personal information that a friend posted to their wall. If a teacher want a class page them more power to them but don't make me use it. I have a facebook account and an facebook access app on my Iphone. I check my facebook evrytime I think about it which is about once every 3-4 months. Being forced to check face book and more time to me being online which I utterly hate. Facebook should not ever be a teaching tool!!!

Missy said...

I feel that Facebook was designed for one thing and one thing only. It is a social network to allow old/new friends to meet and interact. Allowing people to know information about their life on a day-to-day basis. It is not ment to be used as part of the on-line classroom or for the use of teachers trying to connect with their students outside of school. I feel that if a teacher "friends" a student on facebook then it is between the two of them and no one else.

steve said...

I personally believe that facebook should not be used as tool in the classroom nor should teachers incorporate it in their lesson plans. Social networks can cause problems in many ways and at times a teacher may post something that should have been said. Another issue that can occur is personal discussion that can occur between a student and teacher.

Jory Boyd said...

I believe that Facebook should be left out of the classroom for now. Most of younger people in the class probably don't realize that Facebook was created simply for a way for students from individual schools to interact and a college email was a requirement to sign up, if I remember correctly you couldn't even add people from other schools. That being said, Facebook has completely changed and is now a way to keep in touch with friends and family instead of a tool to interact with other students on your specific campus. I don't have a problem with teachers setting up group pages and I personally wouldn't mind adding a teacher. I have a lot of family on Facebook and I already have to censor my Facebook page for my relatives, but I can see why it would be considered inappropriate for teachers to access all of that information.