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With Twitter being one of the most popular social media platforms today, its functionalities should not be ignored in education. Apart from Twitter being a fun and easy way to keep up to date with news or connect to friends and co-workers, the platform is now being explored as an e-learning tool for teachers and students alike.

It is no surprise that Twitter is popular for its social nature, the use of hashtags offers the chance to take place in conversations with many people around the globe. The benefits this has for teachers around the world is now being explored by UNU-MERIT, the Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology of the United Nations University and Maastricht University.

By using social network analysis, UNU-MERIT researchers Martin Rehm and Ad Notten have analysed conversations among teachers, especially focusing on the role of social capital on Twitter. The research highlights the space Twitter offers for social opportunities, where informal learning can be initiated and fostered. Individuals can become central players in conversations and thereby gain key positions in conversations on innovative topics. Bridges are built by connecting teachers from diverse backgrounds in these conversations, resulting in an educational experience where the social position of a teacher can be enhanced, benefiting their continuous professional development.

Share, network, connect and get involved in educational Twitter conversations too! Follow EDLAB on twitter @EdlabMaastricht

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