My thoughts about using Social media in online courses:
As of now, I would not incorporate Twitter into my online course, mainly for issues with privacy. Unlike Facebook, in which the user personally has to accept friend requests, Twitter allows anyone to follow the user. This could lead to bullying, stalking, or even possible identity theft. In addition, I really could not find any benefits of using Twitter in online learning. From what I have seen, Twitter does allow one to follow politicians, groups, and events, keeping up to date on information. However, knowledge such as this can also become available by performing web searches and using resources that the instructor places in the online course. Also, I cannot see an advantage of using Twitter as a communication tool over chatrooms already set up in online courses.
However, I may be interested in using Facebook in my online courses. I could see myself using Facebook applications to create flashcards, simulations, and other learning tools. Discussion forums and group work can also be set up in Facebook. Since many students are familiar with Facebook, they may be more inclined to participate in these activities than in others that are used in conventional online courses. Perhaps I can set up a poll in my online course to determine if students would be interested in using this technology.