Leerbestuurstelsels teenoor sosialenetwerk–omgewings: die ontwikkeling van n geïntegreerde tegnologiese onderrig–leer–model
Du Plessis, Linda
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The use of computer - mediated communication (CMC), e.g. e-mail and text-based conferencing, particularly in asynchronous mode, has rapidly increased within higher education. Findings from the educational research literature on the value of social networking in education range from its being a waste of time and a distraction from academic goals, to contrary views that it is empowering and inevitable. These diverging opinions make it clear that social networking sites (SNSs) are bringing about new challenges to the learning environment. Learning management systems (LMSs) and social networking sites (SNSs) are two important resources investigated in this study, and are defined below. SNSs are defined as web-based services that allow individuals to construct a public or semi-public profile within a bounded system, specify a list of other users with whom they share a connection, and view their list of connections and the lists made by others within the system. This option of expanding networks is a distinguishing feature of SNSs. SNSs can be accessed via a variety of devices, one being mobile technology. An LMS is a software system that enables the management and delivery of courseware and other resources over the internet. Most LMSs are web-based, which allows access from any place at any time. Many LMS developers are attempting to include social media functions as part of LMS functionality, whereas others strongly feel that this is a step in the wrong direction. They argue that we cannot just take the newest, neatest, shiniest object and bolt it on to an LMS –each technology has its own niche and the incorporation of these different functionalities has more negative than positive implications for an LMS. This study is motivated by a scholarly approach to teaching and learning which involves the systematic study of teaching and learning and the public sharing and review of such work with a view to directly and indirectly affecting the success of student learning. This article reports on a social media intervention intended to increase student engagement and also enhance learning in the subject systems analysis and design (SAD) which is offered as part of an information technology course at a South African university. This research project aims to make a meaningful contribution to the body of knowledge on the educational value of the use of social media. In the research that led to this article, students’ perceptions about collaborative learning, social presence and levels of learning were investigated, as well as the interplay between these events. The critical factors that support the successful utilisation of an SNS in a learning environment were determined. The following two research questions underpin the investigation: •Do social networking sites (SNSs) play a learning-enrichment role in the classroom?•Can learning management systems (LMSs) and SNSs be successfully integrated in the classroom?