Research published in Computers & Education

Our paper on teens’ use of Facebook for academic collaboration has been accepted in Computers & Education. I have been working with my colleagues Dr. Nicole Ellison and Dr. Yvette Wohn in a project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to look at college aspirations of socially and economically disadvantaged high school students. A previous co-authored paper examined how social media impacts first-generation college students’ college application efficacy and success in college.

The research highlights are as follows:

  • Using a sample of 690 students, we examined high school students’ use of Facebook for academic collaboration.
  • Facebook-enabled class collaboration is associated with higher grades.
  • Information-seeking Internet skills predict Facebook class-related collaboration.
  • “Actual” Facebook friends predict Facebook class-related collaboration.
  • Facebook friends’ instrumental support predicts collaboration on Facebook.

The paper is titled: Actual Friends Matter: An Internet skills perspective on teens’ informal academic collaboration on Facebook.

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