Data Use, Technology, and Educational Leadership

Applying Social Network Analysis to data use

Here’s a video of Alan Daly discussing his paper exploring social network analysis (SNA) and its potential to illuminate issues in school data use. This past summer I attended the LINKS Center for Social Network Analysis workshop, and it was a blast. I highly recommend it. The instructors and gaggles of TAs were all very talented and patient.

Something I really appreciate about Alan’s work (and his video) is that it makes SNA much more accessible. I saw his presentation at AERA in Vancouver on this paper and thought it was spot on.

A lot of people confuse SNA with social media. Very briefly, SNA helps to reveal the underlying patterns and relationships among people and events. Often, formal organizational charts don’t capture our actual patterns of interaction (who we trust; who we go to for advice on pedagogy versus advice on student discipline; how “well-connected” each of us are to each other). Accordingly, analysts often use sociograms to get a better picture of the underlying relationships. Catch the video above to get a sense for what SNA might mean for data use. This is only the start to more fruitful investigations of the matter.

Alan’s also edited a book on SNA and its potential uses in education. 


2 comments on “Applying Social Network Analysis to data use

  1. Pingback: TCR special issue on data use | Datapulted

  2. Pingback: Social Networks and Data Use | Datapulted

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This entry was posted on August 21, 2012 by and tagged , .