Training Teachers for the Knowledge Society: Social Media in Science Education

Dana Crăciun, Mădălin Bunoiu

Abstract


Internet and social media (SM) have revolutionized the way scientific information is disseminated within our society. Nowadays professional and/or social networks are increasingly used for learning and informal science education successfully supplements the formal one at all
educational levels. Students become addicted to technology from an early age and consistently use SM for communication purposes and personal image. In this context, it is reasonable to assume that the use of Web 2.0 and SM can be successfully integrated in formal science education. This integration, however, depends mainly on how teachers design the learning activities using Web 2.0 and SM, on their digital skills and expertise, on their attitude towards using SM to communicate for personal and professional purposes and to obtain educational benefits. In this study we start from the premise that a positive attitude of future science teachers towards ICT integration and their
willingness to use SM in their educational communication can be formed in the initial teacher training program, being a crucial factor for the effective use of such tools in education in the future. We detail two activities and analyze them from the SM and Web 2.0 integration perspectives. The first activity is an extracurricular one in which students had to create a digital story and present it to secondary school children in class. The second activity is a curricular one aimed to promote a project-based learning and based on making a comic about an optical phenomenon taught in secondary school. We present and discuss these activities to emphasize how the skills that target
science teaching using ICT and SM can be developed.


Keywords


Social Media, Digital comics

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