My Topics

14 February 2013

Twitter as an Effective Study Tool

Keywords: education, learning, North America, computer, experiment, internet, intervention, media, social media, young adults,

It is almost impossible to imagine young people’s life without Twitter. Although Twitter is mostly used for its social character, a Teaching of Psychology study shows that it can be an effective educational tool as well. 

Take aways

  • Receiving informative tweets about concepts covered in class increases students’ performance on their exams. 
  • The use of humor in educational tweets is important for the learning process. 
  • Teachers must be aware of the educational possibilities of Twitter. Students’ memory for important course concepts can be increased by tweeting about it on a regular basis. 

Study information

  • The question?

    Can Twitter serve as an effective learning tool?

  • Who?

    63 students (42 women, 21 men; majority is 18-20 years old, white, and from a middle to upper socioeconomic status)

  • Where?

    Tampa, United States

  • How?

    The students, who attended introductory psychology courses, were divided into two classes. One group received various humorous and informative tweets about psychology concepts covered in class, and the other group received tweets that contained simple jokes only, without any concept in it at all. Students received the tweets once per day on average. Multiple choice exams and recall tasks were performed to reveal study differences. 

Facts and findings

  • Students who received tweets that contained psychology-related concepts during their course, scored better on the multiple choice questions that tested their knowledge about those particular concepts. 
  • The more often students looked at the twitter feeds, the better they scored. 
  • However, students were not performing significantly better on the other multiple choice questions. 
  • Twitter was seldom reported as a memory source, meaning that most students were not aware of the educational aspect of it.