Perceived Benefits and Challenges of Physical Educators’ Use of Social Media for Professional Development and Learning

in Journal of Teaching in Physical Education
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  • 1 Elon University
  • 2 Ohio University
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Purpose: This study investigated the benefits and challenges described by physical educators who had actively used social media professionally for an average of more than 6 years. Method: The data were collected through semistructured individual and focus group interviews, with an international sample of physical educators (N = 48). The data were analyzed through an open coding process to develop themes. Results: Diverse benefits and challenges associated with social media use were identified and organized in alignment with a social ecological model. The benefits included enhanced knowledge, skills, teaching, student learning, and access to professional community. The challenges included managing the quantity of available content, the risks of context collapse, and navigating the cultures and discourse of online spaces. Discussion: A deeper understanding of the benefits and challenges of physical educators’ social media use can enable stakeholders to act in more strategic ways as they navigate the promise and the peril of social media.

Carpenter is with Elon University, Elon, NC, USA. Harvey is with Ohio University, Athens, OH, USA.

Carpenter (jcarpenter13@elon.edu) is corresponding author.
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