Defining Appropriate Professional Behavior for Faculty and University Students on Social Networking Websites
By L. Alvin Malesky Jr. & Chris Peters
The vast majority of university students have profiles on social networking sites (e.g., Myspace, Facebook) (Salaway et al. 2008). However, it is yet to be determined what role this rapidly evolving method of communication will play in an academic setting. Data for the current study was collected from 459 university students and 159 university faculty members. Participants’ opinions regarding faculty/student interaction on social networking sties (SNSs) were analyzed. Over one-third of the students and a quarter of the faculty participants reported that it is inappropriate for faculty members to have accounts on SNSs. Significant disagreement existed between the faculty and students, as well as among the faculty and among the students regarding what constitutes appropriate professional professor/student interaction on SNSs.