Like you, I went through the list. One by one, I went through the offerings:
Professional and Academic Editing? Too hard.
Poetry Writing? Poetry is confusing.
Environmental Writing? I recycle my soda cans; isn't that enough?
And then, much like a beacon in the night...a healing balm to my chafed soul...an ice cold beer after mowing the yard on a scorching Summer day...it was there. The clouds parted, golden rays illuminated the two words, breathing hopeful life into this student.
“So, I'm going to get to play on Facebook for a grade?,” I asked aloud. Sweet. I am positive you thought the same.
Little could our minds comprehend how Social Media, particularly Facebook, would lead to academic catastrophe. For some, possibly worse.
All this time I've been thinking Facebook was fun. It was a great way to reconnect with old friends. It helped me keep in touch with the family members that were only used to hearing from me on Christmas.
But then, I was made aware of “The Study.” This confounded document led me to the understanding that we have all been set up to fail this course. It's true.
In 2009, researchers at The Ohio State University concluded that there is a direct correlation between Facebook and college academics. Specifically, students who use Facebook tend to study less and carry lower grade point averages.
“We can’t say that use of Facebook leads to lower grades and less studying – but we did find a relationship there,” said OSU doctoral student, Aryn Karpinski, co-author of the study.
Typically, Facebook users in the study had GPAs between 3.0 and 3.5, while non-users had GPAs between 3.5 and 4.0.
Ahhhh!!!,...I can feel my 4.0 slipping away through my browser!
However, if there is a silver lining to the OSU study it's that science, technology, engineering and business majors were more likely to use Facebook than were students majoring in the humanities and social sciences. Of course, that's only good news for our colleagues who avoided Social Media altogether.
It gets worse. Much worse.
After the initial pangs of despair subsided, I asked myself what else could possibly happen to me – to us – from partaking in Facebook during this Social Media course. The list is long and deadly, but I feel you must know that Facebook's evil tentacles reach long and deep. Besides destroying academic hopes, it also ruins friendships, is bad for marriages, is a detriment to adolescent minds, single handedly laid waste to the birthday reminder industry, raises the risk of cancer, and in some extreme cases, ruins Christmas.
Folks, don't say I didn't warn you when come May and you check Owl Express, you see a big “F” next to your name and Social Media.