Social networking in English language learning. Didactic properties of social networks.
At the moment in the Russian education there is a stage of intensive Informatization of training. Such concept as “lifelong learning” is tightly fixed, which means that learning should not end at a certain stage – school, University or other, but on the contrary – accompany us as long as possible.
In one of the works of I. V. Robert, the term “Informatization” is interpreted as a process in which the sphere of education is provided with methodological materials, technologies, and the potential of various information and communication technologies is realized.
Development of methodology for the use of ICT in modern learning have been studied by many scholars such as Robert I. V., Polat E. S., Bukharkina M. Yu., Sysoev, P. V., Evstigneev M. N., Capranica K. V., and others.
The relevance of this topic is due to the fact that the analysis of scientific literature has not revealed any scientific work describing social networks in teaching foreign languages.
Social networks, along with many other information and communication tools, have been involved in the traditional learning process in English classes. These platforms have shown that they can be used effectively in extracurricular time. The term “social network” is now very common in various spheres of life. This indicates that the phenomenon is quite widespread in society. So far, there is no consensus on how to interpret this term accurately. For Example, E. Bondarenko writes in his article that the social network is “software on the Internet that allows you to create your own profiles and communicate with other participants in the virtual space” [5, p. 3]. A very similar definition can be found in the works of foreign author M. D. Boyd, where the social network is defined as “an Internet service that allows everyone to create a public or semi-public profile within the system, to organize social relations with other users. The nature and nomenclature of these relationships may vary depending on the site” [1, p. 211]. Some of the most popular social networks at the moment, it is “Vkontakte”, “Facebook”, “Classmates” for the older generation, “Instagram” and “Twitter”.
Full-time English classes can be described as limited in time and place of organization. It is the Internet resources that help to expand the opportunities of a person to study not only within the walls of his educational institution. Social networks make it possible to organize distance learning, which is great for practicing all kinds of language skills and perform tasks regardless of where the student is and at what time he does it.
After analyzing the data on the didactic properties of modern ICT, it can be concluded that they are applicable to social networks.
Multilingualism, multiculturalism. Social networks are filled with content by the user himself, which means that the information is provided in many languages of the world. Therefore, they are a good platform for learning English. You can also find materials about the different cultural aspects of English-speaking countries. For rice.1 is an example profile in “Twitter”, which is called EnglishHeritage. It contains text information in English about cultural values, historical facts of great Britain.