The effectiveness of Twitter as a tertiary education stakeholder communication tool: a case of #FeesMustFall in South Africa

OUTPUT TYPE: Conference or seminar papers
PUBLICATION YEAR: 2019
TITLE AUTHOR(S): N.Makhubu, A.Budree
KEYWORDS: #RHODESMUSTFALL, COMMUNICATION MEDIUMS, HIGHER EDUCATION, SOCIAL MEDIA, TWITTER
DEPARTMENT: Inclusive Economic Development (IED)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 11302
HANDLE: 20.500.11910/15253
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11910/15253

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Abstract

Twitter has been a prevailing proxy in activating South Africa???s #FeesMustFall student movement. This research explores whether or not, social media enables effective student online activism. In contentious periods, it is crucial to determine an effective means of conflict resolution within tertiary education, via information and telecommunication technology. This case study analyses a gross total of 567,533 tweets, sampling the student movement???s inceptional years of 2015 and 2016. Frameworking this enormous engagement using big data requires a mixed research approach. Using a big data conceptual framework, this paper prioritises trend lines over headlines. The findings suggests a methodological problem for South African researchers, university practitioners, and social science scholars to collaborate ensuring long-term success of a microblogging data management value chain within a tertiary education specific ecosystem. A South African higher education microblogging environment which collectively explores local inter-campus microblogging for public engagement. The Big Data V-Model can inform higher education stakeholders of public engagement effectiveness on five different qualitative and quantitative factors. In this process, key big data opportunities and issues can be addressed promptly and appropriately to the respective campus issues.