Connectivism and Social Media (SoMe)

What are the affordances of Social Media? It seems that SoMe is a powerful tool when looking at learning from a connectivist perspective, it enables individuals to build networks in a number of ways. Blogs enable learners to follow one another, teachers and academics, responding to one another’s posts asynchronously. SoMe also enables the user to draw together their own thoughts through posting, but also through creating a network of links to related sources of information i.e. other blogs, websites, academic papers. So Social Media is obviously social, but is also now being used as a tool for academic research and communication in line with connectivist principles.

As we build networks around various nodes or ideas, some will inevitably evolve and strengthen over time, while others may become obsolete. As connectivism suggests this is mirrored cognitively, where useful pathways between neurons are strengthened to form permanent connections and networks, while those pathways that are unused weaken and fade.

 

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