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Social Networking and Online Education

This article focuses on the popularity of social networking across the globe and their availability to use its convenience as a mean of imparting education.

Onset of Social Networking:
Popularity of the Internet gave way to the introduction of chat rooms, online communication hubs like MRCP, MSN, Yahoo, and many more in the field of online communication. Then came the social networking sites, like My Space, Twitter, Orkut, and Facebook, and last not the least WEBKINS, where people could share anything, ranging from personal information to videos, and pictures. The list is non-exhaustive as to the nature of shareable information provided on these websites. People communicate and share knowledge, world happening and discuss matters of general importance with people they probably have never met. The growing popularity of social networking is feeding the space for information and communication channels that are unparalleled by any other information channel of its time.

Growing Popularity and Addiction:
As per the latest research in the field of social networking amongst young students, the National School Boards Association NSBA states that more than 50% of the student population worldwide uses social networking sites as a mean of interaction with friends. They use this channel as a mean to discuss current happenings that go around at schools and colleges and other educational topics. The number is astounding as to the amount of time these students spend on social networking sites, students in school spend around 5 hours on social networking sites on a daily basis. The fact that it is just not students who use social networking site, many activists across the globe have been using social networking sites in order to further their cause and spread the word. The implications of social networking are immense, and people have started thinking of other uses for these sites like imparting education through social networking sites.



Education and Social Networking:
Many schools and colleges have been working on the feasibility of using social networking sites for imparting education. Harvard already has an online Facebook for its students and so is the case with many other renowned colleges across the globe. The social networking sites allow students to discuss innovation, ideas and other education related items like talking issues with assignments and projects, discussing any problems with the curriculum. The same can be used to get in touch with people who share a similar cause, interest, or hobbies. The impact of this outlook can be witnessed by the amount of activity that takes place in these social networking sites.

New Technological Advents:
With the popularity of Facebook, twitter and MySpace, many companies are planning to launch their own versions of networking tools for people across the globe. Google Wave is another such communication and networking tool launched by Google in 2010. Google wave promises a newer wave of opportunities in the field of social networking and promises growth in areas like education, communication and information technology. Online education seems to be the winner in the field with the growing number of student incorporating the said field. Students will benefit from the availability of cheaper online education provided in the most entertaining manner possible.

Summary:
The concept of education through social networking holds many promises for students. The concept will bring to light the usage of social networking for the benefit of education and the development of the society in general.

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