If you bring a laptop to class, it’s almost inevitable that you visit Facebook at least once. But the most popular social networking site doesn’t have to be taboo. You can use it to help you stay focused in class.
One thing that will not work is if you have yourself available for chat. Facebook chat must be turned off, but you can use the site for other nifty features. You can take a snapshot of your homework and upload it to your Facebook—that way, you have it for later. You could also take a photo of the professor’s notes on the board and refer to them after class in your photo album. It’s best to create a whole new album for your classes and to caption them appropriately like you would written notes.
You can also use Facebook as a class-buddy system. Most colleges don’t have distance-learning technology that connects to a physical classroom. The class is either entirely online or in a room. If you know you’re going to miss a class because you’re out of town, you can use the site to connect back to the classroom. Through Facebook, you can ask one of your friends or classmates to log on and talk to you about what’s going on in the class as it happens. You can also add to the discussions by typing in what you want to contribute. This use of Facebook requires another person, but is still a legitimate excuse for having the site up on your laptop.
Another great feature of Facebook are the events. You can create an event for a study session right before a test and send it out to your classmates and your professor on the site. You can do this for quizzes, labs, exams, and possibly even finals. Most students log on to Facebook once a day, so it’s more than likely they will see your event invite and you’ll have a more productive study group.
The most effective way to use Facebook would be to find things on the site that relate to your class’s discussion. Marketing, advertising, communication, technology, sociology, psychology, English, Spanish, education and so many other disciplines can find something on Facebook to discuss and find connections to current topics. You can even find topics that relate to journalism and biology. More and more, professors and students are using Facebook as classroom application examples for their topics, so add to the discussion and make the best of your time on Facebook and in the classroom.
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