My recent article from the journal On the Horizon, "Miscellanea U: Post-Disciplinary Networks in Social Media," is available for download from Connexions. Thanks to the editor, Michael Feldstein, for setting this up. Writing for this journal was a new experience for me as the intended readers are information technology administrators and educational technology company executives. As such, it's presentation is a little different, as is the discourse, but the main points resonate (I hope) with the general flow of arguments I've been making here and elsewhere.
Here's the abstract:
Purpose:This conceptual paper considers the pedagogical, disciplinary, and institutional implications of social media for higher education.
Approach: The article examines current theories on educational technology and social media in the context of specific social media (Second Life and iTunesU) used in pilot programs.
Findings: The article finds that social media dramatically alter the material contexts in which we make decisions about how to organize people and information in higher education. The operation of social media, particularly the low costs of group formation and risk-taking, are difficult to accommodate within the traditional institutional structures of higher education.
Originality/value: This article expands the conversation of social media in higher education beyond the limited (though certainly significant) tasks of technical innovation and policy-making to recognize the larger institutional and disciplinary challenges and opportunities they represent.
Keywords: social media, Second Life, iTunesU, pedagogy, distributed learning environments