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Digital mentoring of young people for responsible citizenship: a case study of an organisation using Twitter

Miyazaki, Tomoaki; (2020) Digital mentoring of young people for responsible citizenship: a case study of an organisation using Twitter. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

This research aims to assess qualitatively a social media strategy employed by a UK-based civil society organisation to mobilise young people to political actions, in particular, voting. Conceptualising democracy as full participation in a decision-making process by members of a society, the project chose the organisation, Bite the Ballot (BtB), which aims to encourage young people to vote. While this research focuses on BtB’s Twitter strategy, it is also concerned with how followers learn the importance of voting through their interaction with BtB. To achieve this, an analytical framework was employed to analyse interactions on Twitter. To triangulate the tweet analysis, the research collected two additional data sources: interviews with key informants and document analysis of BtB’s output including its website. In addition, network analysis was used to contextualise BtB’s strategy within the wider network of youth-led organisations which legitimises the selection of the case for this study. The research revealed some evidence that BtB has employed an effective approach in developing democratic skills for responsible citizenship among young people on Twitter. As the BtB strategy appears to be based on young people’s preference fora horizontal relationship rather than a hierarchical relationship, BtB has adopted a mentoring approach to encourage them to vote after discussion on Twitter. Furthermore, I also found that BtB has developed an unthreatening online environment on Twitter where young people can freely explore and discuss issues with their peers, while BtB acts as their mentor. The analysis of tweets underlines BtB’s approach by suggesting that it allows young people potentially to practise their democratic skills on the BtB Twitter account by posting relevant comments to a discussion topic. Drawing on the above, I conclude that BtB’s strategy constitutes a promising pedagogic approach in guiding young people to develop their democratic skills through interaction on Twitter.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Digital mentoring of young people for responsible citizenship: a case study of an organisation using Twitter
Event: UCL
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2020. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10090824
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