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Using Social Media in Teacher Preparation Programs: Twitter as a Means to Create Social Presence

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Penn GSE Perspectives on Urban Education Volume 11, Number 2, ISSN 1946-7109


This exploratory study examines the use of the micro-blogging service "Twitter" in multiple sections of a pre-service teacher education program in a diverse, urban university. The use of Twitter aimed to encourage student-student and student-teacher interactions, thus enhancing social presence and diminishing the sense of isolation in online classes. Data were obtained by monitoring student Twitter and blog posts, as well as from a student survey where students indicated how they perceived their sense of belonging to a community of learners. Findings indicate that students' conversations revolved around five themes: (a) field experience, (b) emotions, (c) cooperating teacher, (d) class, and (e) relationships. Their conversations were also classified into three sub-categories based on intended audience: (a) students, (b) teacher, and (c) no one in particular. The results from the survey indicate that the group with the least interaction was the group that indicated feeling more engaged in the learning process and more connected to other learners. Implications of these findings and recommendations for future research are discussed.


Munoz, L.R., Pellegrini-Lafont, C. & Cramer, E. (2014). Using Social Media in Teacher Preparation Programs: Twitter as a Means to Create Social Presence. Penn GSE Perspectives on Urban Education, 11(2), 57-69. Retrieved March 21, 2019 from .

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Cited By

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  3. Keeping It Real: Factors that Impact Social Presence, Feelings of Isolation, and Interactivity in Online Learning

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