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Educational Networking – Using Social Media for Learning Purposes

Educational Networking is the new buzzword that's slowly gaining momentum in India. Educational Networking is the use of social networking for educational purposes. There are very few educationalists in India exercising this medium to impart knowledge. There is a strong belief that inclusion of this concept into Indian educational system will enhance the eco-system and be instrumental in bridging the gap between the Global and Indian education standards.

Though still at a nascent stage, the Indian education system is aligning itself by adapting the social media tools like Twitter, Facebook for reasons other than networking. Taking a cue from corporate style of functioning, where social networking sites are used as notice boards; educators are using it to give lessons and remove location barriers in the process. Tools like Twitter, Skype and Webex have fast emerged as great mediums which have larger and effective reach. This medium came to the rescue of uncommunicative students who lacked proper language skills and helped them shed inhibitions. Characteristics like portability and availability of these applications to students enable professors from Harvard or Stanford to teach students directly irrespective of the location.

The social media networking enables the professors to stay connected with the students beyond the classroom hours to help the latter with their queries and assignments. These tools have also been a source of information apart from being a platform to discuss various technical aspects. The students can communicate and interact via this social media with knowledge sources across the globe. This novel concept enables peer interaction not just within the classroom limits but through the virtual world. This results in creating an educational cohort that enables them to discuss in a forum of peers which seems to revolutionise the next generation.

R. Praveen, a student of a Delhi based university, who is using social media for purposes beyond networking says, 'I am on Twitter most of the time posting and sharing updates on my projects and assignments with my fellow students, and professors who are mostly based outside India. This helps me get instant solutions from subject experts instead of waiting for the next classroom session'. In a nutshell, the social media is not just beneficial for promoting communication skills, social interactions, technical competencies an community activities, but can be used way beyond the current dynamics and dimensions. It can easily be said that the advent of these social networking sites has revolutionised almost every genre an sector in the world.

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