The Educational Use of Social Media Sites by Pharmacy Students

Erin L St. Onge, Katie Hoehn


Social media sites are widely used among professional students and may offer an alternative means ofcommunication for professors to utilize within their courses. Social media site usage has been characterized withinhealthcare education, however, data is lacking on its use within pharmacy programs. The purpose of this study was toevaluate social media use among pharmacy students at distance campus sites in order to determine studentpreferences and ways in which social media could be used within the pharmacy curriculum. A 12-item surveyquestionnaire was administered to first, second and third year students at three distance campus sites at the universityof florida college of pharmacy. Pharmacy students surveyed most commonly reported using the social media siteFacebook® for school purposes, followed by Google+®. The majority of students from each class year reported usingsocial media primarily to connect with fellow students or classmates. First and second year students most commonlyuse social media to keep up to date with events around campus, while third year students most commonly use socialmedia sites to collaborate about a class or case. A common advantage to incorporating social media sites intopharmacy education was identified as keeping up to date with important dates and campus events, while the biggestdisadvantage identified was that social media sites can be too distracting and time consuming. Social media sitesmay be used within pharmacy education as an alternative teaching modality.

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Copyright (c) 2014 Erin L St. Onge, Katie Hoehn

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Journal of Curriculum and Teaching ISSN 1927-2677 (Print) ISSN 1927-2685 (Online)  Email:

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