Social media and research

 

Increasingly, social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook, and blogs, are being used by researchers to recruit survey participants, disseminate findings, and/or network with other researchers. While it may seem like simply a trend, these social media tools are already impacting how researchers communicate and collaborate.

We’ve collected several resources and manuals for researchers, both academic and community-based, that provide some guidance to this evolving area. As with all resources, you’ll need to approach them from the lens of your work and make your own assessment as to whether they will be useful for you.

Infographics are also a new information dissemination tool that are increasingly used to translate research findings. Click on the image to see the source.

Infographics are also a new information dissemination tool that are increasingly used to translate research findings. Click on the image to see the source. Additional infographics can be seen here.

 

GENERAL SOCIAL MEDIA RESOURCES

  • Demographics of Social Media Users (2016) – Ever wonder who actually uses social media? This survey by the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project provides an overview of who is using social media, including a breakdown by social media service.
  • How to Use New Media Tools – An interactive guide to new social media tools on the American AIDS.gov website. This online resource provides excellent definitions of each, including downloadable one pagers.

 

SOCIAL MEDIA USE in RESEARCH GUIDES

  • Social Media: A Guide for Researchers (2011) – This guide was produced by the International Centre for Guidance Studies and aims to provide the information needed to make an informed decision about using social media and select from the vast range of tools that are available.
  • Handbook of Social Media for Researchers and Supervisors (2012) – The goal of this handbook, which was published by  The Open University and Vitae Innovate, is to assist researchers and their supervisors to adopt and use social media tools in the service of their research, and, in particular, in engaging in the discourse of research. The handbook presents an innovative suite of resources for developing and maintaining a social media strategy for research dialogues.
  • Using Twitter in university research, teaching and impact activities: A guide for academics and researchers (2011) – The London School of Economics’ Public Policy Group’s a short guide that shows new users how to get started on Twitter and hone their tweeting style, as well as offering advice to more experienced users on how to use Twitter for research projects, alongside blogging, and for use in teaching.
  • Newcastle University social media for research – An online guide explaining how different social media tool can help at all stages in the academic research process. This guide covers blogging, wikis/collaborative editing, twitter, networking and sharing, sound and vision, and RSS, widgets, and other tools. This guide uses a showcase interface (much like Pintrest) that provides numerous links to external resources — click on the tabs along the top of the page to go to each section.

 

COMMENTARIES OR BLOG POSTS

  • Going solo or joining someone else’s show: Multi-author blogs as a way to maximise your time and exposure (Feb 18, 2013) – With the practice of academic blogging becoming increasingly mainstream, it is important to emphasise the diversity of blog formats out there, from personal blogs to multi-author blogs run by institutions or around certain themes. In this post on the London School of Economic’s award winning knowledge translation blog, Alex Marsh discusses the differences and finds that the commitment of time and energy associated with an individual blog can be enough to deter some people and that a good way to ease into a new blogging routine is by making occasional contributions to a multi-author blog.
  • The terror of tweeting: social medium or academic message? (February 5, 2013) – In this article on The Guardian’s Higher Education Network blog, Claire Warwick explores how the mismatch between some academics and social media is not so much fear of technology, but concerns over losing control. She suggests sparing them the beginner’s guide because over simplified advice on how to communicate their research may simply insult them.

 

SOCIAL MEDIA USE in the HIV SECTOR

  • OHTN Rapid Review: Social Media & HIV (2010) – A rapid review conducted by the Ontario HIV Treatment Network on the use of social media by AIDS Service Organizations, through the lens of the following question: “How has social media been used in the HIV/AIDS sector and with what impact?”
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  • The Evaluation News blog covers our work within PAN and with organizations in the community.  Learn about different kinds of evaluation like Realist Evaluation, learn how other organizations are using evaluation approaches, meet evaluators on the job, and find out about how you can help in community evaluation. Explore in detail:  Evaluation News blog Evaluation… Read more »

  • People with HIV can live long and healthy lives if they access to treatment and social support as needed. As people with HIV age, however, complications of aging can compound challenges of living with HIV. Concerns for people with HIV who are aging can include income security, stigma, safe and affordable housing, aging in place,… Read more »

  • Each year our annual conference gathers people from across the province who share their programs and services, learn about new developments in public health, and help build a vibrant and supportive community. We gather presentations, papers and videos following each conference so people may refer to them at any time. See resources from conferences: Explore… Read more »

  • We offer our KnowledgeConnect webinars to reach our 50+ member organizations as well as community leaders and stakeholders. Information is available when our viewers have the opportunity to connect. Watch for news on upcoming webinars in the blog. Follow the blog for new on upcoming webinars Explore webinars by theme: Advocacy, Policy, Public Health Health Determinants… Read more »

  • Each fall members of the PAN community meet to learn about the latest in public health and HIV in BC, learn from each other’s work and set priority action items for the upcoming year.  The 2016 Fall Conference, AGM, Forum and ED Summit was no exception. The 2016 conference featured Canadian drug policy and public health… Read more »

  • In April 2016 BC’s Provincial Health Officer Dr. Perry Kendall declared the overdose epidemic in BC a public health emergency.  Despite committed efforts, the epidemic continues, as overdose statistics show.  This has significant impact on first responders, including frontline staff at Pacific AIDS Network (PAN) member and allied organizations, and especially people with lived experience… Read more »

  • In community-based research the involvement of communities or people who share a common experience or identity with the group being researched is of great importance. The community has a central voice in the research directions. “Peer Research Assistants” or “Community Research Associates” are those hired into roles to help with the research from start to… Read more »

  • In April 2016 BC’s Provincial Health Officer Dr. Perry Kendall declared the overdose epidemic in BC a public health emergency in April 2016.  Despite committed efforts, the epidemic continues, as overdose statistics show.  This has significant impact on first responders, including frontline staff at Pacific AIDS Network (PAN) member and allied organizations, and especially people… Read more »

  • Information about the law and the rights of people with HIV  Having HIV is not a crime, but law can impact heavily on the lives of people with HIV. The Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network “is one of the world’s leading organizations tackling the legal and human rights issues related to HIV, and advocating at both… Read more »

  • Evaluation can help guide your organization or group to make decisions about programs, services, research, and more. Participatory research is just what it sounds like- people and communities take part in decision-making about what is evaluated, rather than being told what they “should” evaluate. Community is central to evaluation work and we can help you… Read more »

  • Knowledge translation and exchange (KTE) or knowledge mobilization (KMb) consists of a variety of methods in which research and knowledge is transferred, translated, exchanged and co-produced to enhance the practical application of knowledge between researchers and research-users (individuals and community organizations seeking to use research to inform decisions in public policy and professional practice). A… Read more »

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