Monday, September 17, 2007

dudes, I need professor advice

Question from friend via Facebook...

Are we confirming or ignoring friend requests from our students?

My response:
Because I teach about writing, new media, online culture, and professional communication, I see Facebook as an extension of my teaching. I accept student friend requests because participating online like this is part of my pedagogy. Therefore, I seek to model good, professional, ethical online participation and "friending" them and allowing them to see how I manage my online identity as *part* of my professional identity is in my teaching perview. For those who teach in other areas, the purpose and boundaries are less clear. It's up to you. If you do deny them, however, I'd include an explanatory note that you are using Facebook for personal reasons and I'd change my settings so only friends can see your content. I think we're either all in or we have to use social networking spaces privately.


D. Robin said...

I struggle with this question all the time at the secondary level. As a rule, I never accept friend requests from current students. After they graduate, if they seek me out, I consider their ethical persona (since they could easily show current students my profile).

Peace =)

p.s. (relates to the post immediately after this one) I asked my students the other day if internet language has destroyed the way we communicate... and all they could focus upon was my use of LOL, BRB, etc. They believe that English teachers ought to hold the highest authority on proper English grammar. I argued that, like Yoda, people who know all of the rules should be able to break them. My Star Wars allusion persuaded a few, but the rest simply felt awkward. They no longer felt that I had to uphold a standard, but they believed that internet language is for their generation, and there would be no way that I could be a part of that. Little do they know that we're probably closer in age than they think... (or I'm just old and out of date - sigh).

Shaun said...

A good, workable solution Darrell. I think I'd practice something similar if my pedagogy didn't include explicit discussion of online persona.