What Do Students Think of Social Media in the Classroom?

designer-in-action-93129-mIt may not come as much of a shock to hear that young adults go on social media the most. According to Pew Research Center’s , 87% of Facebook users are between 18 and 29. As social media has become more popular, educators have jumped on board as well. A 2013 study done by Pearson Learning Solutions and the Babson Survey Research Group found that of the 8,000 faculty surveyed, 41% used social media as a teaching tool. But just how useful do students actually find social media in the classroom? Stacy Neier and Linda Tuncay Zayer explore this topic in their article “Students’ Perceptions and Experiences of Social Media in Higher Education” from Journal of Marketing Education.

The abstract:

Recent research has discussed the opportunities associated with the use of social media tools in the classroom, but has JME(D)_72ppiRGB_powerpointnot examined the perceptions students themselves hold about its usefulness in enhancing their educational experience. This research explores students’ perceptions of social media as an effective pedagogical tool. Undergraduate students in a midsized, private university taking a marketing course were surveyed about their social media usage and preferences as well as their perceptions regarding the use of social media in higher education. Additional qualitative data collection with students probed into motivations for social media use in education as well as instructor and university perceptions. Findings reveal openness to using social media in education, uncover interactive and information motives for its use, and offer theoretical and pedagogical implications. Importantly, we offer insights into how educators can strategically incorporate social media tools into the classroom as well as how the use of social media can potentially affect students’ views of the instructor and the university.

Click here to read “Students’ Perceptions and Experiences of Social Media in Higher Education” from Journal of Marketing Education. Want to have all the latest research like this sent directly to your inbox? Click here to sign up for e-alerts!

Texting In Class: Hazardous To Your Grades?

Students do it on the sly. Instructors, in general, despise it. But texting has become a way of life–with studies revealing that young people spend 15% of their waking life doing it–and it’s bound to happen in the marketing education classroom. How does it impact students’ GPAs and what, if anything, can instructors do about it? A new study, published in the Journal of Marketing Education by Dennis E. Clayson of the University of Northern Iowa and Debra A. Haley of Southeastern Oklahoma University, offers some interesting findings and practical solutions:

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This exploratory study looks at the phenomena of texting in a marketing education context. It outlines the difficulties of multitasking within two metacognitive models of learning and sets the stage for further research on the effects of texting within class. Students in marketing classes in two different universities were surveyed. They received an average of 37 texts per day and initiated about 16. More than 90% of the respondents reported receiving texts while in class and 86% reported texting someone from class. Even though students believed they could follow a lecture and text at the same time, respondents who did text within marketing classes received lower grades. Contrary to other research, texting frequency was generally unrelated to GPA. Implications for both pedagogical issues and research in marketing education are discussed.

Read the complete article here, and learn more about the Journal of Marketing Education by clicking here. You can also sign up for e-alerts from the journal to be notified about the latest techniques in marketing education, emphasizing new course content and effective teaching methods.

Why Embrace Quantitative Methods?

Editor’s note: We’re pleased to welcome Crina O. Tarasi, J. Holton Wilson, Cheenu Puri, and Richard L. Divine, all of Central Michigan University, who published “Affinity for Quantitative Tools: Undergraduate Marketing Students Moving Beyond Quantitative Anxiety” in the Journal of Marketing Education.

While teaching a variety of marketing courses, from the introductory course to advanced courses at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, we have observed interesting (and disturbing) attitudes about quantitative analysis among marketing students. In brief, they just seem not to like working with the quantitative aspects of marketing. It may be that marketing students select this major because they see marketing as a qualitative area of study and work. However, in an increasingly data driven world it is important for marketing professionals to appreciate and be able to work with a variety of quantitative forms of analysis to gain information from the wealth of data that are available.

In a way the results of our research have been confirmatory. Survey results do tell us that marketing students have less affinity for quantitative methods than do non-marketing majors and that women students have less affinity than do males. On a positive note we find that we can affect quantitative affinity in our classes as evidenced by the result that those students who have taken a marketing research class have stronger quantitative affinity than students who have not taken marketing research. As a result of our findings we may be able to better understand marketing students’ lack of quantitative affinity thus enabling us to better help them appreciate the role of quantitative analyses in their course work and careers.

Probably the most surprising finding was the insignificant relationship between internship experience and quantitative affinity. We thought students who had some professional experience in the workplace would develop a greater appreciation for the value and importance of quantitative methods. Not only was this relationship insignificant, but the observed sample means were opposite of the direction hypothesized. Maybe due to the less technical assignments they receive as interns, most students are not exposed to quantitatively based decision making.  We were saddened to find confirmation in the data that marketing majors enjoy less the quantitative aspects of their job than their peers in other majors and that the female students are less confident than their male peers.

The research we have published leads to several further research streams. First it would be interesting to know how a student’s quantitative attitude affects the decision about what major is selected. Second, we would like to understand what/who influence the formation of marketing students’ attitudes about quantitative methods. Is it prior educational experiences in college? Is it pre-college educational experiences? Is it parents? Is it fellow students? Third, it would be interesting to know how the attitudes change once a student has, perhaps five years, work experience. Along this line we would like to investigate whether the career path within marketing makes a difference. Fourth, it could be useful to use the instrument that we developed to evaluate how what we do in courses influences students’ quantitative attitudes. The instrument could be administered both at the start and end of particular courses: perhaps the intro course, the marketing research course, and the capstone course. It may also be possible to use the instrument to evaluate various interventions that we develop in an attempt to improve quantitative affinity.