NORDSCI Conference proceedings 2020, Book 1

Education and educational research

THE IMPACT OF STUDENT BLOGS ON THEIR PROFESSIONAL AND SOCIAL COMPETENCIES

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Svetlana Khoroshilova, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Ekaterina Kostina

ABSTRACT

In digital era technology is constantly reshaping our future and creates new demands for educators to bridge the gap between old school methodology and digitally-oriented professional landscape. Digital natives, who are flooding our universities at the moment, can’t imagine their lives without mobile phones and social networks. The question that naturally arises is why not to use these ICT advances in and out of the classroom in order to enhance learners’ outcomes in both hard and soft skills? The paper presents the study which evaluates the impact of tertiary-level student blogs in English on the development of their professional and social competences from the students’ perspective. The research questions were: 1) to investigate the students’ experience with running an educational blog; 2) to evaluate the impact of a student educational blog in Public Speaking Course on students’ foreign language proficiency level perceived by language learners themselves; 3) to assess the students’ beliefs and evaluations of the development of their soft skills due to the blogging technology interwoven into the academic process in Public Speaking Course at the university.
The method employed in the current research was a questionnaire study to find out learners’ opinions about the impact of students’ blogs on their professional and social competences. The experiment was conducted at Novosibirsk State Pedagogical University (Russia) in which two study groups participated with the total of 32 students. The participants as part of their Public Speaking course had to run a multi-media educational blog in the English language as a portfolio of their progress in this discipline. The questionnaire included demographic questions and research questions. Research questions addressed the respondents’ experience with blogs, their attitudes to blogging, and the perceived impact of blogging technology on their foreign language proficiency level and soft skills.
The results of the study showed that most participants were interested in having more experience with both professional and personal blogs in the future and gave high ranking to the impact of such blogs on their foreign language acquisition. The research confirmed our hypothesis that students’ multimedia blogs in the target language would have a positive impact on students’ professional as well as social competences and would enhance their motivation and participation rates.

KEYWORDS

blog, professional competence, soft skills, hard skills, English language proficiency

REFERENCE

NORDSCI International Conference 2020, Book 1, Conference Proceedings, ISSN 2603-4107, ISBN 978-619-7495-11-9, THE IMPACT OF STUDENT BLOGS ON THEIR PROFESSIONAL AND SOCIAL COMPETENCIES, 111-119 pp, DOI paper 10.32008/NORDSCI2020/B1/V3/12