So, now that we are all on Facebook, what are our responsibilities?
As a teacher, the first sensible step for me was to check out BSU’s policies on the use of social media. In addition, I researched and reviewed current policies of other institutions.
Below are the policies I have created for my own classroom:
1. While teachers in my organization have a certain amount of flexibility when it comes to teaching methods, topics/content covered, as well as classroom management rules and policies, I think it will be a good idea to check with the administration regarding our internal social media use policy as I start Fall semester. As BSU’s social media use handbook recommends, “When in doubt, ask!”
2. As a teacher and FB page/group admin, I should explicitly state all the do’s and don’ts, perhaps by posting and maintaining them on the page itslef. In addition, in order to prevent any misunderstanding (as it is often the case with language learners:), having students read, negotiate the meaning in small groups, and create classroom posters can be very beneficial.
3. Finally, monitoring one’s own actions and modeling correct behavior on Social Media sites is even more important for teachers than in a face-to-face environment. As was discussed previously, digital footprint is there to stay! One incorrectly used word can easily be copied and shared.
Policies for Students:
1. This page is for learning. This is an extension of our class - just like we would not normally bring all our friends and family here (well, most of the time), the same is the case with our group. You are welcome to show and share the content, but please view it as our class.
2. Do not post/share personal or unrelated links, photos, or videos. You can share them by friending your classmates and doing it outside the group.
3. You do not have to friend any of/all your classmates or teacher.
4. Maintain academic and professional communication and performance throughout - just like you do in class! It’s that easy!
5. Inform your teacher at any time if you feel uncomfortable in any way - if FB does not support your learning, you do not see any value in using it, or have any other concern.
6. Participate! Just like participation is important in the “real” classroom, it is also the case on FB. Do not simply “look” at the posts and move on. Respond! This type of participation will help you improve your reading and writing skills, as well as learn how to remain focused on the topic and be able to express your point of view.
7. Think before you post! Ask yourself:
- can this be offensive to anyone?
- what is the purpose of my post?
- when trying to post something funny, will EVERYONE find it “funny”?
- am I being respectful to EVERY single group member?
8. Since you are language learners, fo pas can (and will!) happen. Take time and clarify your message or intention. Follow up! Talk to your teacher!
9. Do not post pictures of your teacher or fellow classmates without their permission.
10. You are encouraged, though, to share other learning resources that you find helpful in your learning journey. Absolutely! However, don’t just share hundreds of links that “look” interesting. Do not share if you have not opened and read the article yourself. Share if you did, and found it valuable. Give us a brief tip on how it was valuable to you.
11. “Stand behind your words.” Use your real name so that other students know who you are.
12. You don’t have to “like” everything and anything other people post :) However, if you do “like” some posts, tell us why and what particularly you like about that specific post. Again, it will help you improve your language skill!
3. Share, Learn, and Have Fun!
Boise State University, Social Media Handbook. Retrieved from:
Johnson, S. 2010. Guest Blog: Making the Case for Social Media in Education. Retrieved from:
Petronzo, M. 2012. The Teacher’s Guide to Facebook. Retrieved from:
Social Media Guidelines NYC, Department of Education. 2013. Retrieved from:
Image source: http://www.slideshare.net/oxiem/social-media-policy-for-school-districts?ref=http://edtech.mrooms.org/mod/page/view.php?id=70412