University of Granada, Department of Marketing and Marketing Research (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN11 Proceedings
Publication year: 2011
Pages: 3196-3206
ISBN: 978-84-615-0441-1
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2011
Location: Barcelona, Spain
This paper intends to model and evaluate the experience of using social networking microblogging applied to teaching. Microblogging social networks represent an opportunity to communicate with the whole planet, making a limited use of characters. These apparent limitation forces users to share only the essential aspects of the conversation, creating the tendency to synthetize with ingenuity and personal skills what they intend to show to the rest of the network.

The main focus of this research is to discuss how microblogging social networking promote informal awareness among users, and increase participation and self-learning under a constructivist approach. It also discusses how these platforms have the feature to motivate students by reducing physical and psychological distance between teacher and student, increasing self-confidence and involving the students in their self-learning process. In order to do so, we have implemented the use of these social networks before, during and after each class of a theoretical and practical course, during one academic semester, by activating an account at social networking microrblogging most used for one of the subjects taught. Thus, the material used for the course has the potential to be transmitted, followed and discussed during the traditional course, or later on. The use of microblogging social networks have a great potential of novelty that involves the active participation and bidirectional communication with students, breaking barriers and creating informal learning. It also has a good process of self-management for the student that indeed helps the learning process. It can be integrated, aggregated and controlled by the professor with a good amount of flexibility. Its specificity of ubiquity of space and time make them ideal to summarize the above in class, allowing to show examples, generating discussions, sharing, consulting and, finally, involving the students in the learning dynamic and in the creation of their own work material.

Within this context, we start from the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) (Davis et al., 1989) that incorporates some of the most widely used constructs in the literature, like the basic role of subjective norms (SN) and the social image (IMAGE) on the use of structured information technologies in social networks. In order to do so, a questionnaire was administered to 135 students from various degrees of Bachelor and Diploma of the Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Granada. The data obtained allowed to develop a structural equation model with the previous constructs, and to evaluate the major relationships between the use of social networking and microblogging attitude developed by users. The analysis results in a behavioural model of social networks using robust and parsimonious hypothesis supporting the research raised, highlighting the appropriate use of extended TAM models.
e-learning, technology acceptance models, microblogging, social networks, innovation.