The Cross-platform Social Engagement of Students


  • Miriam J Johnson Oxford Brookes University



Social Media, Social Obligation, Emotional Labour, Higher Education


With social media being a ubiquitous part of the way students engage with each other, this study explores how media, journalism, and publishing students use social media both in and outwith the classroom. It focuses on how cohorts use social media during class times – how they are speaking to each other and scrolling social feeds – and how they communicate about course related content after class. This research highlights the obligation that some students feel to answer questions that come into the group social channels, while linking that obligation to a sense of reciprocity. It shows how these issues are embedded it in the value exchange of emotional labour and its relationship to gender. Not all students feel obligated to take part and many indicate levels of frustration at the stream of questions, which can, in turn, exacerbate negative mental health issues in students.