What’s your perception of modern education? Do you imagine calm, focused students sitting behind their desks, and a teacher giving a boring lecture? Well, that was what education used to look like. Now, it’s a much more interactive process. The students are taking part in discussions, and teachers do their best to introduce technology in the educational processes.
Why technology? – Because students love it! Not because they are addicted to it, but because it makes everything easier. From note-taking to memorizing data, everything is easy when you have the right app or tool to help you. What about social media? Is it really a distraction? Maybe it can help you learn more effectively?
For a college student, social media can mean one thing and one thing only – tweeting. For a smart college student, however, social media opens up new perspectives for learning. That’s only possible when you use the right social media tools. We’ll list 5 of them.
Okay, Google+ may not be the most fun. However, it’s a really effective social media tool you can use during the studying process. You can connect with a study group in a circle and share impressions and tips without the need to get everyone together in a room. You know that wouldn’t work.
Why are we suggesting Google+ instead of Facebook? There are fewer distractions on this social media network. With Facebook, it’s all about cats and cooking videos. Google+ gives you a more focused environment, where a circle of students can easily collaborate. It’s great not only for study groups, but for team projects as well.
Isn’t Pinterest like the food heaven? You land there and you start planning your meals for a year in advance. Well, it’s not just for that. When you’re interested in studying, Pinterest can be a great source of knowledge. You’ll find educational infographics on any topic you have in mind.
Moreover, you can create special boards for every project you’re working on. Let’s say you’re completing a research paper for your history course. Since it’s a research paper we’re talking about, you’ll have to collect, read, and use many resources. How do you categorize them? How do you know where your ideas came from? It’s simple: pin the resources in a special board, and you’ll be able to access them at any time.
Where’s the social aspect in that? Well, if it’s a team project, you can share the board. Plus, you can research through Pinterest itself, and you’ll find that other users have already pinned some resources you can use.
This is an aggregator tool for online content from blogs and other sites. When you subscribe to different feeds relevant to your education, you’ll be receiving regular updates, so you’ll always stay on track with the latest research data.
Instead of wasting time to search Google for reliable sources of information, Feedly will do that for you. The social aspect makes it even more useful for studying. You can share the list with your study group, so you’ll discuss that information. Everyone will suggest different feeds, so the activity on this tool will be more productive.
Blogging is the next big thing in education. College professors are recommending students to start their own blogs. It’s a nice way to share the knowledge you’ve gained, but a blog also inspires you to search more, dig deeper, and learn more details.
Focus on a particular niche. It doesn’t have to be related to your major, but make sure it’s something you’re really interested in. Then, the learning process can begin. Think of different topics and create a posting schedule. Make sure to support every single argument with facts from research. This is a great way to improve your writing skills, which you’ll definitely need for successful college education.
You are the content you publish. That’s the motto of this tool. It’s an online curation and publishing tool that allows you to search the Internet for reliable sources of information on any topic. It’s like Pinterest, but more serious. When you find a good resource, you can post it on your personal Scoop.it page, and you can add your own note. Then, you can publish this ‘scooped’ content to your WordPress blog or any social media page.
The free plan comes with limited features, but you should definitely try that one before you upgrade for a more advanced Scoop.it plan.
Let’s be real: it’s hard to stay away from social media no matter how hard you try. Instead of seeing these platforms as a distraction, why don’t you try seeing their advantages? The 5 social media tools listed above can make your college studies more effective. Try them and tell us what you think.
Jessica Freeman is an experienced journalist who often contributes her freelance pieces to Australianwritings. She feels passionate about writing and prefers developing such topics as education, motivation, and career improvements. Meet her on Facebook and Google+.