Your AUP on Social Networking?

At my school, we’re looking at what our school policy on social networking between students and faculty should be.

Our initial inclination was to create a restriction between students and faculty ‘friending’ each other on social networks. arvind and I have discussed this on our webcast a number of times. For example: here and here.  But then the exceptions happen:

1. I have used Flickr, a photo social network to collaborate with my students in photography.
2. Our student environmental club has used Facebook groups and invitations to plan events between students, faculty and parents.

Given the positives that can come out of social networks, does anyone have a policy that rides the appropriateness of use tight rope?

Your thoughts/comments are appreciated.

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Here are some general AUP resources I have collected on the subject:

School Computing Wiki: http://schoolcomputing.wikia.com/wiki/Acceptable_Use_Policies

David Warlick has recently jumped into this conversation: http://davidwarlick.com/2cents/archives/1452 and http://landmark-project.com/aup20/pmwiki.php

Photo from: http://flickr.com/photos/mkeefe/1457984966/

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7 Comments

Filed under School 2.0, Social Networks

7 responses to “Your AUP on Social Networking?

  1. Dave

    My vote is for making two accounts:

    On one account, you’re a school employee, you friend students, you associate it with your school email, it might be set to publicly viewable.

    On the other account, you’re you in real life, you don’t friend students, you say what you do but probably don’t say who you work for (your friends know that info anyways), you use a non-work email address, and it’s restricted to friends-only.

    I hate anything that teaches kids to have a fake online persona, but it’s important that students don’t get side-tracked by their teacher’s personal lives and that your not-so-bright friends don’t post inappropriate things on the Wall where your students can see.

  2. Check out the following guideline from Scotland, by way of Ewan McIntosh.

    http://edu.blogs.com/edublogs/2008/05/what-the-update.html

  3. Thanks, Richard. You saved me a copy and paste ;-) I think the Scottish guidelines are sensible and based on principles most teachers already ‘get’.

  4. Be sure to check CTAP Region IV’s Cybersafety Project for a comprehensive set of resources on Acceptable Use Policies (AUP), cell phone policies and legal issues.

    http://www.ctap4.org/cybersafety/

  5. So this is a very interesting topic — Thanks to all who commented. After I get our policy nailed down, I’ll definitely update you all.

    My feeling is that we can’t ban social networks, but we can find a balance. It’s and interesting time to be struggling with this.

    I also posted this on a listserv and here’s the conversation: http://listserv.syr.edu/scripts/wa.exe?A1=ind0805e&L=ised-l

  6. Pingback: 21st century tools for 21st century learners « Georgia Library Media Association

  7. Pingback: Your AUP on Social Networking - Our Results : Learning Blog

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