“We used to have fun but then data entered the game…” A new appointment of the Webinar Series

“We used to have fun but then data entered the game…”: Potential and pitfalls of social media in academic professional development” is the title of the webinar by Stefania Manca.

On January 28, Stefania Manca from the Institute of Educational Technologies of the National Research Council of Italy will visit us.

Stefania has been active in the field of educational technology, technology-based learning, distance education and e-learning since 1995. Her research interests are social media and social network sites in formal and informal learning, teacher education, professional development, digital scholarship, and Student Voice-supported participatory practices in schools. She is currently working on a three-year research project about the use of social media for teaching and learning about the Holocaust through an informal learning approach. She is well-known internationally for her research on Social Media, particularly Facebook, and her studies on ResearchGate and Academic Social Network Sites.

Her recent output includes a contribution to the journal The Internet and Higher Education, “Snapping, Pinning, Liking or Texting: Investigating Social Media in Higher Education Beyond Facebook” (2020) and a study on “Holocaust memorialisation and social media. Investigating how memorials of former concentration camps use Facebook and Twitter” that was presented at the European Conference on Social Media (ECSM) 2019 (Brighton, UK – 13-14 June 2019).

The relationship with Edul@b started thanks to her contact with Juliana E. Raffaghelli (Edul@b member). Juliana has been involved in Stefania’s research on Academic Social Networks, and more recently they have furthered their joint exploration of digital scholarship by trying to understand the researchers’ social activity (sharing, downloading, posting, citing, commenting) on Open Data within Academic Social Network Sites and data repositories. Their collaboration is related to the changing landscape of data literacies in Higher Education, connected to the research activity as a dimension of digital scholarship.

Her stay will give continuity to the research work; it will be also the occasion to have Stefania as contributor the Edul@b  “Webinar Series” on Data Cultures in Higher Education . (Activity belonging to the national project RyC “Professional Learning Ecologies for Digital Scholarship: Modernizing Higher Education by Supporting Professionalism”, with the joint effort of the UOC UNESCO Chair Education and Technology for Social Change “).

Stefania’s proposal for the Webinar is strongly based on her studies about the use of social networks in academia (we found interesting to put below this post a synthesis of her published articles, see references below), connecting the dots of several years of research on the field, so we’re really happy to announce this webinar, second to the Series.

WEBINAR: Potential and pitfalls of social media in academic professional development

Stefania Manca – Chair: Juliana Raffaghelli

January 28, 2020, 17.15 to 18.00 – In Streaming from https://streaming.aistechnology.es/uoc/dhdlive_tibi/land/

Onsite at: Av. Tibidabo 39, 08035 Barcelona, Room Josep Laporte

In this webinar, we will deal with the growing interest in the last decade about the social media, connecting it to the way it pervaded all forms of activity, from informal social and cultural expression to professional activity. Indeed we will particularly consider how the “Ivory Tower” of academia opened to these very informal tools (with a focus on Facebook”).  How did the interest in social media started in academic professionalism? It appears that in spite of the enthusiasm, the usage has been more connected to networking in research and professional development as a whole than for teaching at the university. This caution might not be senseless, since the risks of social media and the big data produced triggered a huge debated more recently. The dawn of academic social networks, also hyped, but many questions appear to be open.

All activities are free, but we need to register participants for communications over the events’ organization details. If you are interested in *any* of the activities above, please make your inscription below:


Guest-editor of journal special issues

Manca S., Ranieri M. (2017). “Reshaping professional learning in the social media landscape: theories, practices and challenges”, Qwerty. Open and Interdisciplinary Journal of Technology, Culture and Education, 12(2).

Journal articles

Manca, S. (2020). Snapping, pinning, liking or texting: Investigating social media in higher education beyond Facebook. The Internet and Higher Education, 44, Article number 100707, 1-13.

Rehm, M., Manca, S., Brandon, D., & Greenhow, C. (2019). Beyond Disciplinary Boundaries: Mapping Educational Science in the Discourse on Social Media. Teachers College Record, 121(14), 1-12.

Krutka, D. G., Manca, S., Galvin, S. M., Greenhow, C., Koehler, M. J. & Askari, E. (2019). Teaching “against” social media: Confronting problems of profit in the curriculum. Teachers College Record, 121(14), 1-19.

Gleason, B., Manca, S. (2019). Curriculum and instruction: pedagogical approaches to teaching and learning with Twitter in higher education. On the Horizon.

Raffaghelli, J. E., & Manca, S. (2019). Is there a social life in Open Data? The case of open data practices in Educational Technology research. Publications, 7(1), 1-17.

Manca S. (2018). ResearchGate and Academia.edu as networked socio-technical systems for scholarly communication: A literature review. Research in Learning Technology, 26, 1-16.

Manca S., Ranieri M. (2017). Networked scholarship and motivations for social media use in scholarly communication. International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 18(2), 123-138.

Manca S. (2017). An analysis of ResearchGate and Academia.edu as socio-technical systems for scholars’ networked learning: A multilevel framework proposal. Italian Journal of Educational Technology, 25 (3), 20-34.

Manca S., Ranieri M. (2017). Implications of social network sites for teaching and learning. Where we are and where we want to go. Education and Information Technologies, 22(2), 605-622.

Manca S., Grion V. (2017). Engaging students in school participatory practice through Facebook: The story of a failure. British Journal of Educational Technology, 48(5), 1153-1163.

Manca S., Ranieri M. (2016). “Yes for sharing, no for teaching!”: Social Media in academic practices. The Internet and Higher Education, 29, 63-74.

Manca S., Ranieri M. (2016). Facebook and the others. Potentials and obstacles of Social Media for teaching in higher education. Computers & Education, 95, 216-230.

Manca S., Caviglione L., Raffaghelli J. E. (2016). Big data for social media learning analytics: potentials and challenges. Journal of e-Learning and Knowledge Society, 12(2), 27-39.

Manca S., Ranieri M. (2016). Is Facebook still a suitable technology-enhanced learning environment? An updated critical review of the literature from 2012 to 2015. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 32(6), 503-528.

Manca S., Ranieri M. (2013). Is it a tool suitable for learning? A critical review of the literature on Facebook as a technology-enhanced learning environment. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 29(6), 487-504.

Ranieri M., Manca S., Fini A. (2012). Why (and how) do teachers engage in social networks? An exploratory study of professional use of Facebook and its implications for lifelong learning. British Journal of Educational Technology, 43 (5), 754-769.

Published by jraffaghelli

Research professor at University of Padua, Department of Philosophy, Sociology, Pedagogy and Applied Psychology. Former Ramon y Cajal researcher at the Faculty of Education and Psychology (Universitat Oberta de Catalunya). PhD in Education and Cognitive Science and Master in Adult Education (Ca' Foscari University of Venice) Degree in Psychology (University of Buenos Aires).

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