Applying Bronfenbrenner’s Student Development Theory to College Students & Social Media

Tweet (One of my colleagues and friends, Paul Eaton, wrote a great blog post about Bronfenbrenner’s applicability to online/social media spaces.  I also wanted to have a go at the topic, so I purposely didn’t re-read his post until after publishing this one… and there’s agreement… but with a twist… read on…) Urie Bronfenbrenner‘s theory of ecological development is a commonly taught theory in college student development courses.  Although it was developed prior to the existence of the web, it nevertheless represents a highly useful tool for understanding the impact of the web on human… Read More

3 Insights on College Student Self Esteem from “Let me Take a #Selfie”

In the three months since it’s release, the video “#Selfie (Let Me Take a Selfie)” has been viewed nearly 100 million times on YouTube and has gone into heavy rotation.  Although tongue-in-cheek, the video reveals some surprising nuggets of wisdom regarding social media engagement, particularly around Instagram.  It also provides interesting insights into the underlying psychology of its users, particularly those of traditional college age.  Colleges and universities are only now beginning to react to this trend.  Some institutions have gone so far as to put in place “selfie bans,” while others have… Read More

VIDEO Posted of My #PechaKucha on the Main Stage at #ACPA14

“Digital Identity Isn’t About (A Separate) Identity At All” The video of my PechaKucha presentation on the big stage at the 2014 ACPA-College Student Educators-International Convention, is posted on YouTube!  Woot!  Check out the annotated slide version here.  View it below.  And see more from other presenters here.

Digital Identity Is NOT About (A Separate) Identity At All

My research passion is about college students and how social media and technology impacts the developmental process. Unfortunately, I’ve found a lot of the discourse in student affairs around this subject to be lacking. When you attend a conference session or read a thought piece centered around this topic, they often focus on marketing, technological tools, and their use, rather than what’s occurring at a more theoretical or fundamental level. If articles and sessions do focus on student development, it is often on the byproducts of a larger developmental process rather than on how technology may be changing the… Read More

The Quarterlife Crisis and The Twenteysomething Identity

One of the most popular readings I assign in my spring semester Higher Education practicum courses is from The Quarterlife Crisis: The Unique Challenge of Life in Your Twenties.  Although the cultural references within are somewhat dated, the concepts still resonate with their audience just as strongly.  It seems to uniquely capture some of the feelings that young college graduates face as they reach towards the next phase of their lives and the uncertainty that lies ahead.  You can see some of the students’ reactions to the reading from a previous semester,… Read More