Museum Learning via Social Media: (How) Can Interactions on Twitter Enhance the Museum Learning Experience?

Charitonos, Koula (2011). Museum Learning via Social Media: (How) Can Interactions on Twitter Enhance the Museum Learning Experience? In: Learning, Media and Technology Doctoral Conference, 4/7/2011, London, UK.

Abstract

Museums are rich sources of artifacts, people and potential dialogic interactions. Recent developments in web technologies pose big challenges to museums to integrate such technologies in their learning provision. The study presented here is concerned with the potential of how school visits to museums can be enhanced by the use of social media. The Museum of London (MoL) is selected as the site of the study and the participants were a Year 9 History class (13-14 years old) in a secondary school in Milton Keynes. It draws on Falk and Dierking’s (2000) Contextual Model of Learning and considers evidence of meaning making from students’ tweets and activity on-site. Observational data during the visit, the visit’s Twitter stream and post-visit interview data with the participants is presented and analysed. It is argued that use of Twitter, a microblogging platform (http://twitter.com), enhances the social interaction around museum artifacts and thus, the process of shared construction of meaning making, which can enrich the museum experience.

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