This post is provided by guest blogger, Angelica Brodeur, graduate student University of St. Francis, MS Training and Development program
There is notable interest in incorporating social media in higher education e-learning courses but there is currently little research detailing how social media can most effectively be integrated as a learning strategy. Recently, authors Mnkandla and Minnaar (2017) documented their meta-synthesis on social media in e-learning through their peer-reviewed qualitative research approach of various e-learning articles. It is their desire to create a framework that will allow educators to choose a specific social media site that will provide the desired impact on their e-learning course. As a result, the authors were able to provide a framework composed of seven themes.
I recommend this article to anyone interested in utilizing social media in e-learning courses. The social media covered includes a variety of platforms such as Facebook, Skype or Google Hangout, wikis, blogs, and certain mobile apps like WhatsApp. Mnkandla and Minnaar (2017) provide a detailed account of their research process, criteria and findings used to specify when different social media platforms should be used to address the learning outcomes. Also, the proposed framework will benefit educators and instructional designers interested in using social media in e-learning as a deep learning strategy (Mnkandla & Minnaar, 2017). As a result of this article, educators can confidently utilize social media in their e-learning courses to increase student learning.
Mnkandla, E. & Minnaar, A. (2017). The use of social media in e-learning: A metasynthesis. International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 18 (5), 227–248. https://doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v18i5.3014