Building an Online Community: Student Teachers’ Perceptions on the Advantages of Using Social Networking Services in A Teacher Education Program


Akhmad HABIBI
Amirul MUKMININ
Yatim RIYANTO
Lantip Diat PRASOJO
Urip SULISTIYO, Muhammad SOFWAN, Ferdiaz SAUDAGAR


ABSTRACT
This inquiry examined student teachers' perceptions on the advantages of using Social Networking Services (SNS) in an English teacher education program at a public university in Jambi, Indonesia to ease the communication, supervision, discussion, and report submissions between supervisors and student teachers. The networking types included in the program are Whatsapp, Telegram, Email, and Google Form. The method of the research was qualitative through using focus group discussions as the technique of collecting data involving forty-two student teachers. We organized our analysis and discussion around their perceptions and the contexts in which the advantages they perceived emerge. The analyses of the texts revealed that two salient themes with their sub-themes related to the advantages of using Social Networking Services (SNS) in a teacher education program were social interaction (peer discussion and platform to interact with supervisors or lecturers) and learning motivation and experience supports (self-directed learning, promotes critical thinking, content engagement). Some pedagogical and social implications are also discussed.


KEYWORDS: Student teachers, social networking services, teacher education.

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