Social Media. A Panacea for Collaborative Professional Development of Business Educators in Nigeria


Hausarbeit, 2015
15 Seiten

Leseprobe

Content

Introduction

Collaborative professional development of business educators

Social Networking Sites for Collaborative Professional Development of Business educators

Video and Photo Sharing Sites

The Benefits of Using Social Media for Collaborative Professional Development of Business educators

Recommendations

References

Abstract

Business educators can benefit from collaborative professional development through the use of social media. This is necessary in order to properly prepare students for the world of works. The study focused on the use of social media, social networking sites, and the benefits of using social media in Nigeria. The study identified Face book, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, internet forums, chat rooms and message boards, video and photo sharing sites like YouTube, Flicker and Video, blogs, wikis, and social book marking as social media tools that can be used for collaborative professional development of business educators in Nigeria. It was recommended that Business educators should form collaborative professional development through social media where they can be dedicated to explore and experiment with new approaches and ideas for effective teaching and learning of business subjects.

Keywords: Social Media, Collaborative Professional Development, Business educators

Introduction

Business teacher education is that part of vocational and technical education that provides knowledge, skills and competencies for a teaching career in academics, office occupation and for self-reliance. Ekpenyong (2005) stated that business teacher education exist with emphasis geared towards creating or offering employment opportunities covering wide range of training requirements from certain semi-skilled jobs, to teaching, managerial and executive positions. Ezeani (2012) opined that business education as a discipline is expected to expose its recipients to diversity curricula that inculcate attitudes, knowledge, skills, values that are required in the business world. It is a means of producing a healthy, literate, self-reliant citizens that would create wealth for human development and self- employment, resulting to sustainable national development. The need to redesign teacher education according to Agomuo and Enang (2013) especially business educators is increasingly imperative. Business educators should therefore, vast in using social media for collaborative professional development.

In order for business educators to properly prepare students for the world of work, they should be well informed on the use of social media for collaborative professional development. Baker-Doyle and Yoon (2011) stated that when teachers are given the opportunity to collaborate as part of professional development, they become immersed in the new technology and start to process ways to use the technology to support student learning. Business educators need high-order teaching skills, deeper level of content knowledge, continual collaboration, on the job learning and a greater responsibility over what happens in the classroom. Professional development opportunity according to Arnold and Paulus (2010); Baker-Doyle and Yoon (2011) are beginning to move from traditional setting to online setting. Therefore, there is need for business educators to use the features of social networking sites to connect to other teachers and create an environment where they can request for feedback, gain new ideas and reflect on instructional practices using discussions with their colleagues. With these practices, newly recruited teachers can connect to experienced professionals from other schools or even other parts of the world (Huang, Yang, Yueh-Min, & Hsio, 2010).

Collaborative professional development of business educators

One of the major problems of business educators on the job is the feeling of isolation. The very nature of the job which is always a teacher with so many students as well as the high expectations on the teachers have a tendency to leave the teacher feeling alone on the profession. Collaborative professional development of business educators is a way of alleviating the feeling of isolation. Baker-Doyle and Yoon (2011) stated that collaboration with other teachers allows educators to escape the confines of their classroom, share ideas and solve problems, thus, helping them to develop a sense of belongingness and purpose. Social media tools can be used to acquire the emotional support and appreciation for creative practices that teacher’s seldom get behind closed doors (Greenhow, 2009). Collaboration done among business educators using social media can collect discussions about curriculum, content delivery, and classroom management.

Professional development can enhance teacher knowledge and improve instructional practice when it is sustained over time, focuses on enhancing the knowledge and skill needed to teach in specific content areas, employs active learning strategies in which teachers practice new pedagogical skills and receive feedback from others, and creates opportunities for collaborative learning from peers (Desimone, Porter, Garet, Yoon, & Birman, 2002).

Traditional professional development implies face to face providing educators with information, whether it is theories regarding pedagogical practices or updates in subjects matters. This can take form of seminars, lectures or workshops that are supposed to help educators continue to grow in their careers. The danger of many of these forums is that the structure is generally passive. That is to say, teachers can get bored during a long lecture the same way student can (Western Governor University, 2014).

In practice, traditional professional development rarely proves sufficient for making significant changes to individual teachers’ practice or to the culture of teaching in schools (Garet, Wayne, Starcavage, Taylor, Eaton, Walter, & Doolittle, 2011). The reason is that teachers have limited access to high quality professional development (Baker-Doyle & Yoon, 2011). The costs of sustained, content-focused professional development are high, and continuous changes to teachers’ assignments can render content-focused professional development received as part of a previous assignment relatively useless for teachers in their new assignment (Shear & Penuel, 2010). Furthermore, even when teachers do have access to high quality professional development, organizational conditions in schools can limit teachers’ opportunities to experiment with new practices in their classrooms or engage in deep conversations with colleagues about problems they face in implementing new practices (Bryk, Sebring, Allensworth, Luppescu & Easton, 2010). Unlike traditional professional development, that is often fleeting in duration, narrow in focus and top-down in its creation and delivery (Barab, MaKinster, Moore, & Cunningham, 2001); social media can be seen as creating informal opportunities for teachers to engage in professional development that is ongoing, collaborative, easily accessible, and free. Professional development has traditionally been viewed as a formal activity that is often hierarchical in nature, where an expert disseminates information to novices (Barab, Makinster, Moore & Cunningham, 2001).

Generally fleeting in duration and narrow in focus, the series of workshops, meeting, and institutes that were often pre-determined have generally not been very successful in enhancing teacher knowledge and improving student achievement (Barab et al., 2001). Where many traditional professional development methods had limited success, newer, more innovative methods that focus on ongoing growth activities may have a greater potential to affect positively teacher development (Hirsh, 2004). The dynamic nature of online professional development efforts through the use of social media may be helpful in addressing many of the shortcomings of traditional professional development programmes. Furthermore, traditional professional development (where the role of the teacher and learner are static) can be replace with online teacher knowledge development that is often more dynamic in nature where teachers have the opportunity to take on the role of learner as well as teacher (Warren-Little, 2006).

According to Enang (2015), the following are the areas by which social media can be used for collaborative professional development of business educators in Nigeria. They include:

- Social Networking sites for collaborative professional development of business educators
- Video and photo sharing sites for collaborative professional development of business educators

Social Networking Sites for Collaborative Professional Development of Business educators

Social networking sites can be used effectively for business educators for professional development. Social networking are applications that enable online users to connect by creating personal information profiles, inviting friends and colleagues to have access to those profiles, and sending e-mails and instant messages between each other. These personal profiles according to Kaplan & Haenlein (2010) can include any type of information, including photos, video, audio files, and blogs. The opportunities brought about by networking tools are enabling teachers to network and collaborate with other teachers from anywhere, at any time. Social media is a confluence of different online platforms and tools that people use to share content, profiles, opinions, insights, experiences, and to interact with others. It can simply be referred to as the websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking. Furthermore, Gupta (2014) stressed that social media includes social networking sites like facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, internet forums, chat rooms and message boards where people meet and discuss topics of interest, video and photo sharing sites like YouTube, Flickr, blogs, wikis, and social book marking. The common platforms in the social networks have become hubs where people can express and share ideas and experiences with the world. The next section in this paper, report on some social networking site that are useful for collaborative professional development of business educators.

Facebook was founded by Mark Zuckerberg in year 2003 has grown into a popular gathering space not just for students, but also for professionals who are seeking an opportunity to network with others and exchange ideas and resources. Within Facebook’s gathering areas, thousands of business educators can engage in discussions related to teaching and learning. The vast size of these groups, that number in the tens of thousands, and the hundreds of discussion topics that cover the full spectrum of educational issues, highlights the potential of this medium to support collaborative professional development of business educators. Unlike traditional professional development, that is often fleeting in duration, narrow in focus and top-down in its creation and delivery (Barab, MaKinster, Moore, & Cunningham, 2001; Togneri & Anderson, 2003), social network sites like Facebook can be seen as creating informal opportunities for teachers to engage in professional development that is ongoing, collaborative, easily accessible, and free.

Another significant feature of Facebook is the provision for creating groups whereby like-minded individuals or people sharing special interests like the business educators can have the privilege to inform, share, and discuss issues exclusively relevant to them. Active participation in such groups can go a long way in creating a sustainable environment for the professional development of business educators.

One of the most popular social networking sites currently in use is Twitter, which was founded in 2006 by Jack Dorsey, Noah Glass, Biz Stone, and Evan Williams. Twitter is a free online micro blogging tool that allows people to stay in constant contact with each other through short communication. Twitter allows for users to create networks of people. Twitter (2010) stressed that, “every day, millions of people use Twitter to create, discover and share ideas with others.” One of the benefits of Twitter is that the user has control over their personal networks and many professionals are able to connect with a professional community of practice (Dunlap & Lowenthal, 2009). Twitter helps to interact and respond quickly to issues of great interest. It is one of the tools that business educators can use to keep informed, share, and stay in tune through collaborative professional development with what friends and colleagues are thinking, doing, and learning. McCulloch, McIntosh, and Barrett, (2011) further stated that the essence of Twitter is conversation to ask questions, share links, re-Tweet interesting posts from others, and reply when messages are sent. For collaborative professional development, Twitter can be an effective tool in discussing about lesson planning and preparing for practice teaching and simulated lessons for business educators. Twitter is a unique form of communication because of its brevity on the postings with a limit of 140 characters. The users have no need to be acquaintances with each other before collaborating on a subject matter.

Conversely, LinkedIn which was found by Reid Hoffman as a social media is more business oriented and has 85 million members. Users post their professional image to the public, showing their skills, contacting other professionals in the field, and even searching for prospective candidates for their industries. Business educators can use this social media platform to engage in collaborative professional development to enhance teaching and learning in the classroom that will improve educational outcomes.

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Details

Titel
Social Media. A Panacea for Collaborative Professional Development of Business Educators in Nigeria
Autoren
Jahr
2015
Seiten
15
Katalognummer
V418827
ISBN (eBook)
9783668676244
ISBN (Buch)
9783668676251
Dateigröße
584 KB
Sprache
Deutsch
Schlagworte
Social Media, Panacea, Development, Business, Nigeria
Arbeit zitieren
Mrs Judith Enwere (Autor)Linda Lumanze (Autor), 2015, Social Media. A Panacea for Collaborative Professional Development of Business Educators in Nigeria, München, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/418827

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