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Why Facebook is (and isn't) a pre-service teacher's friend
Australian Teacher Education Association (2013)
  • Pauline T Taylor, James Cook University
There is increasing interest in the use of social media networking sites such as Facebook in engaging higher education students in learning and the broader university experience. Research indicates that Facebook has over 100 million active users worldwide, over half of whom log on to the site twice per day. The potential reach and opportunities for wide engagement in using social media is clear. However, institutions have approached its use with understandable caution given the very public and interconnected nature of these "risky" virtual spaces. Many universities have specific and explicit reference in their communications and code of conduct policies regarding the use of Facebook for students and staff.
The use of Facebook in teacher education programs could be considered particularly perilous. Hazards inherent in Facebook use in pre-service teacher education programs include issues of professionalism, ethics, identity, privacy and potential litigation. This paper describes and critiques the use of a Facebook group page in a professional experience-embedded pedagogy subject in a Bachelor of Education program. The critique draws upon literature relating to student experience, design thinking and social media use. It argues that, used prudently, Facebook can be an inclusive dialogic learning space and a valuable tool in developing the professional identity and engagement of pre-service teachers.
  • Teacher education,
  • Social media,
  • Facebook,
  • Higher education,
  • Students,
  • Engagement
Publication Date
June 30, 2013
Citation Information
Pauline T Taylor. "Why Facebook is (and isn't) a pre-service teacher's friend" Australian Teacher Education Association (2013)
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