Advertisement

Adult Learners’ Digital Literacies on an Online Social Networking Site: Facebook

  • Winnie Siu-yee Ho
Chapter
Part of the Digital Culture and Humanities book series (DICUHU, volume 1)

Abstract

The aim of this chapter is to depict the combination of dominant and vernacular practices of adult learners that occurs through the world’s most popular online social networking site (SNS) in the volunteering domain. The rise in digital technologies, especially social networking sites such as Facebook, has also led to thriving online literacies or computer-mediated communication as a communal resource within the volunteering community.

This chapter will introduce participants’ perceptions of computers, the Internet, Facebook and what the Facebook platform looks like. Finally, the cases of four writers will be investigated further, concentrating in particular on using Facebook for social purposes and their different perceptions of the definitions of ‘Facebook friends’. Based on the analysis of images and written texts on Facebook, with semi-structured interviews for 2 years, I presented how and why individual adult volunteers treated friendship in the digital context within this uniformed group as a social world and Hong Kong society at large. Volunteers are engaged in a volunteering environment full of print-based and digital texts. Social media have shaped the volunteering culture by strengthening the social relationships through online interactions.

Keywords

Adult learners Computer-mediated communication Digital literacies Digital texts Facebook Online social networking site Vocational qualification programme Volunteers 

References

  1. Baron, N. S. (1984). Computer mediated communication as a force in language change. Visible Language, 18(2), 118–141.Google Scholar
  2. Barton, D., & Lee, C. K. M. (2012). Redefining vernacular literacies in the age of Web 2.0. Applied Linguistics, 33(3), 282–298.  https://doi.org/10.1093/applin/ams009.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Barton, D., & Lee, C. (2013). Language online: Investigating digital texts and practices. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bates, A., & Murphrey, T. P. (2015). Creative use of technology to encourage human connection and increase Ag literacy: #AgItForward. Conference proceedings of the American Association for Agricultural Education Annual Conference, San Antonio, the United States of America. Retrieved from http://www.aaaeonline.org/Resources/Documents/National/2015%20Poster%20Session%20Proceedings.pdf#page=38
  5. Bortree, D. S. (2005). Presentation of self on the web: An ethnographic study of teenage girls’ weblogs. Education, Communication & Information, 5(1), 25–39.  https://doi.org/10.1080/14636310500061102.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bouhnik, D., & Deshen, M. (2014). WhatsApp goes to school: Mobile instant messaging between teachers and students. Journal of Information Technology Education: Research, 13, 217–231. Retrieved from http://www.jite.org/documents/Vol13/JITEv13ResearchP217-231Bouhnik0601.pdf Google Scholar
  7. Bryant, J. A., Sanders-Jackson, A., & Smallwood, A. M. (2006). IMing, text messaging, and adolescent social networks. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 11(2), 577–592.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1083-6101.2006.00028.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Buckingham, D., & Willett, R. (Eds.). (2013). Digital generations: Children, young people, and the new media. Hoboken: Taylor and Francis.Google Scholar
  9. Bull, G., & Anstey, M. (2010). Helping teachers to explore multimodal texts. E-Journal of Curriculum Leadership, 8(16). Retrieved from http://www.curriculum.edu.au/leader/helping_teachers_to_explore_multimodal_texts,31522.html?issueID=12141
  10. Carnevale, D. (2006). E-mail is for old people. The Chronicle of Higher Education, 53(7), A27. Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/weekly/v53/i07/07a02701.htm
  11. Carroll, J. B. (1967). Research problems concerning the teaching of foreign or second languages to younger children. In H. H. Stern (Ed.), Foreign languages in primary education (pp. 94–109). London: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Cope, B. (2000). Multiliteracies: Literacy learning and the design of social futures. London: Macmillan.Google Scholar
  13. Davies, J. (2006). “Hello newbie! **big welcome hugs** hope u like it here as much as i do!” An exploration of teenagers’ informal on-line learning. In D. Buckingham & R. Willett (Eds.), Digital generations (pp. 211–228). New York: Lawrence Ehrlbaum.Google Scholar
  14. Davies, J. (2012). Facework on Facebook as a new literacy practice. Computers & Education, 59(1), 19–29.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.compedu.2011.11.007.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Davies, J., & Merchant, G. (2007). Looking from the inside out: Academic blogging as new literacy. In M. Knobel & C. Lankshear (Eds.), A new literacies sampler (pp. 167–197). New York: Peter Lang Publishing.Google Scholar
  16. Dehinbo, J. (2010). Contributions of traditional Web 1.0 Tools e.g. Email and Web 2.0 tools e.g. Weblog towards knowledge management. Information Systems Education Journal, 8, 15.Google Scholar
  17. Dunn, K. (2005). Interviewing. In I. Hay (Ed.), Qualitative research methods in human geography (pp. 79–105). Melbourne: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  18. Ellison, N. B., Steinfield, C., & Lampe, C. (2007). The benefits of Facebook “friends:” social capital and college students’ use of online social network sites. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 12(4), 1143–1168.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1083-6101.2007.00367.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Essential elements of human survival answered by students. (2015, May 3). The Sun. Retrieved from http://the-sun.on.cc/cnt/news/20150503/00407_028.html
  20. Facebook. (2012). Life events. Retrieved from https://www.facebook.com/facebook
  21. Facebook says about 745 million people (2015, February 2). Press trust of India. Retrieved from http://gadgets.ndtv.com/social-networking/news/facebook-says-about-745-million-people-log-on-daily-from-mobile-phones-656489
  22. Ferdig, R. E., & Roehler, L. R. (2003). Student uptake in electronic discussions: Examining online discourse in literacy preservice classrooms. Journal of Research on Technology in Education, 36(2), 119–136.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Gatto, S. L., & Tak, S. H. (2008). Computer, Internet, and e-mail use among older adults: Benefits and barriers. Educational Gerontology, 34(9), 800–811.  https://doi.org/10.1080/03601270802243697.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Gee, J. P. (2001). Reading as situated language: A sociocognitive perspective. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 44(8), 714–725.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Gee, J. P. (2003). What videogames have to teach us about literacy and learning. New York: Palgrave.Google Scholar
  26. Gee, J. P. (2010). A situated-sociocultural approach to literacy and technology. In E. A. Baker (Ed.), The new literacies: Multiple perspectives on research and practice (pp. 165–193). New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
  27. Gillen, J., & Ho, W. S. Y. (in press). Literacy studies. In K. Tusting (Ed.), Routledge handbook of linguistic ethnography. Manuscript accepted for publication.Google Scholar
  28. Greenhow, C., & Robelia, B. (2009). Old communication, new literacies: Social network sites as social learning resources. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 14(4), 1130–1161.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1083-6101.2009.01484.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Harper, R., Whitworth, E., Page, R. (2012). Fixity: identity, time and durée on Facebook. In Proc. IR 13, Proceedings of the 17th Annual Conference of the Association of Internet Researchers, Manchester, UK.Google Scholar
  30. Hawisher, G. E., & Selfe, C. L. (2000). Introduction: Testing the claims. In G. E. Hawisher & C. L. Selfe (Eds.), Global literacies and the world-wide web (pp. 1–18). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  31. Heath, S. B. (1983). Ways with words: Language, life, and work in communities and classrooms. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Hine, C. (2000). Virtual ethnography. London: Sage.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Ho, W. S. Y. (2011, October 20). New literacies and popular cultural practices of university students in Hong Kong. Proceedings of the International Conference “ICT for Language Learning” (4th edn), Florence.Google Scholar
  34. Ho, S. Y. (2016). Volunteering literacies: An ethnographic approach to exploring the literacy practices of adult volunteers on a vocational further education programme and a social media networking site in an aviation-centred uniformed youth group (Doctoral dissertation). Lancaster University, Lancaster.Google Scholar
  35. Hong Kong has 4.4 mln Facebook users. (2014, July 25). Ejinsight. Retrieved from http://www.ejinsight.com/20140725-hong-kong-facebook-users-top-4-4-million
  36. Huffaker, D. (2004). The educated blogger: Using weblogs to promote literacy in the classroom. First Monday, 9(6), 1–5. Retrieved from http://firstmonday.org/ojs/index.php/fm/article/view/1156.  https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v9i6.1156.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Ivanič, R., Edwards, R., Barton, D., Martin-Jones, M., Fowler, Z., Hughes, B., Mannion, G., Miller, K., Satchwell, C., & Smith, J. (2009). Improving learning in college: Rethinking literacies across the curriculum. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  38. Jewitt, C. (2005). Multimodality, “reading”, and “writing” for the 21st century. Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 26(3), 315–331.  https://doi.org/10.1080/01596300500200011.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Lee, C. K. (2002). Literacy practices in computer-mediated communication in Hong Kong. The Reading Matrix, 2(2), 1–25. Retrieved from https://www.mediensprache.net/archiv/pubs/2925.pdf
  40. Lee, C. K. M. (2007). Affordances and text-making practices in online instant messaging. Written Communication, 24(3), 223–249.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0741088307303215.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Lee, C. K. M. (2011). Microblogging and status updates on facebook: Texts and practices. In C. Thurlow & K. Mroczek (Eds.), Digital discourse: Language in the new media (pp. 110–128). New York: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Leu, D. J., O’Byrne, W. I., Zawilinski, L., McVerry, J. G., & Everett-Cacopardo, H. (2009). Comments on Greenhow, Robelia, and Hughes: Expanding the new literacies conversation. Educational Researcher, 38(4), 264–269. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/20532542 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Makin, L., & Whitehead, M. (2004). How to develop children’s early literacy. London: Paul Chapman.Google Scholar
  44. McMillan, S. J., & Morrison, M. (2006). Coming of age with the internet: A qualitative exploration of how the internet has become an integral part of young people’s lives. New Media & Society, 8(1), 73–95.  https://doi.org/10.1177/1461444806059871.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. New London Group. (1996). A pedagogy of multiliteracies: Designing social futures. Harvard Educational Review, 66(1), 60–92. Retrieved from http://www.pwrfaculty.net/summer-seminar/files/2011/12/new-london-multiliteracies.pdf CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. O’Reilly, K. (2008). Key concepts in ethnography. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  47. Page, R., Barton, D., Unger, J. W., & Zappavigna, M. (2014). Researching language and social media: A student guide. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Palfrey, J. G., & Gasser, U. (2008). Born digital: Understanding the first generation of digital natives. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  49. Prensky, M. (2001). Digital natives, digital immigrants part 1. On the Horizon, 9(5), 1–6.  https://doi.org/10.1108/10748120110424816.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Richards, K. (2009). Interviews. In J. Heigham & R. A. Crocker (Eds.), Qualitative research in applied linguistics: A practical introduction (pp. 182–199). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Roblyer, M. D., McDaniel, M., Webb, M., Herman, J., & Witty, J. V. (2010). Findings on Facebook in higher education: A comparison of college faculty and student uses and perceptions of social networking sites. The Internet and Higher Education, 13(3), 134–140.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.iheduc.2010.03.002.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Romiszowski, A., & Mason, R. (1996). Computer-mediated communication. In D. H. Jonassen (Ed.), Handbook of research for educational communications and technology (Vol. 2, pp. 397–431). New York: Macmillan Publishers.Google Scholar
  53. Statista. (2018, January). Most famous social network sites worldwide as of January 2018, ranked by number of active users (in millions). Retrieved from http://www.statista.com/statistics/272014/global-social-networks-ranked-by-number-of-users
  54. Street, B. V. (1984). Literacy in theory and practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  55. Street, B. V. (1995). Social literacies: Critical approaches to literacy development, ethnography, and education. London: Longman.Google Scholar
  56. Street, B. V. (2004). Understanding and defining literacy scoping paper for EFA global monitoring report 2006. Paris: UNESCO.Google Scholar
  57. Subrahmanyam, K., Reich, S. M., Waechter, N., & Espinoza, G. (2008). Online and offline social networks: Use of social networking sites by emerging adults. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 29(6), 420–433.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Tapscott, D. (2005). Growing up digital: The rise of the net generation. New York: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
  59. Thompson, J. (2007). Is education 1.0 ready for web 2.0 students? Innovate Journal of Online Education, 3(4), 6.Google Scholar
  60. Williams, B. T. (2008). “Tomorrow will not be like today”: Literacy and identity in a world of multiliteracies. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 51(8), 682–686.  https://doi.org/10.1598/JAAL.51.8.7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hong Kong Polytechnic UniversityHong KongChina

Personalised recommendations