Academics and their online networks: Exploring the role of academic social networking sites

  • Katy Jordan The Open University UK
Keywords: Digital scholarship, Academic networking, Social networking sites, Social network analysis, Academic identity, Online identity

Abstract

The rapid rise in popularity of online social networking has been followed by a slew of services aimed at an academic audience. This project sought to explore network structure in these sites, and to explore trends in network structure by surveying participants about their use of sites and motivations for making connections. Social network analysis revealed that discipline was influential in defining community structure, while academic seniority was linked to the position of nodes within the network. The survey revealed a contradiction between academics use of the sites and their position within the networks the sites foster. Junior academics were found to be more active users of the sites, agreeing to a greater extent with the perceived benefits, yet having fewer connections and occupying a more peripheral position in the network.

Author Biography

Katy Jordan, The Open University UK
Katy Jordan is a PhD student in the Institute of Educational Technology at the Open University UK.
Published
2014-10-25
How to Cite
Jordan, K. (2014). Academics and their online networks: Exploring the role of academic social networking sites. First Monday, 19(11). https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v19i11.4937