Get Over Yourself!

OK, go to this page and first read the little blurb about social media addiction. Then, read the first comment. Again, my outrage at the “book burning” mentality displayed toward social media in academia has made the vein in my head come frighteningly close to bursting.

So, let’s see…young people are addicted to social media…granted. But what dose this mean? To what are they showing signs of addiction? Connecting with friends across campus, across the country, across the globe, and yes, in some cases across the classroom. In most cases, though, they are connecting to individuals with whom they can’t have any interaction otherwise.

Social media is just that–SOCIAL. It helps us maintain connections with others at any time we see fit and allows them to respond with a similarly self-defined time shift. It keeps us connected to each other. My colleague Karen Thurmond mentioned in the course of conversation one day that she felt, if anything, social media makes us more human (I’ve been begging her to publish this somewhere and I can’t wait to read it).

And the fact that the comment on the Higher Ed site compared social media addiction to addiction to cigarette smoking? Come to me when you prove that social media, or second-hand social media, is a Class A carcinogen and I’ll say you have a case. But otherwise, step out of the dark ages and get over yourself!

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About Art

I've been a higher education professional for over 15 years and an Academic Advising administrator for the past eight of those. I have a background in exploratory student advising and have spent a great deal of time guiding students through contemplating their personal college-to-career pathways. I've published, presented, and consulted on the intersection of social media and academia and am a firm believer in social media's power as a tool for engagement rather than solely information delivery. I've worked at public and private institutions as well as 2-year colleges and 4-year universities. I believe in Academic Advising as a teaching and learning activity, that learner-centered education is the key to students' academic success, and that as long as we keep students' individual goals and success at the center of our decision-making process, the problem of college-level student attrition can be solved.
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