Why not Canvas for this course?

To learn social network analysis (SNA) – and many other stuff – I believe the best way is to ‘live’ with it. That is, the best way to learn SNA is to seize every opportunity of applying SNA in one’s own learning journey. This philosophy leads to two major reasons I’m piecing together a learning environment by myself:1

  • First, as an instructor I wish to foster social interactions as much as possible. Traditional learning management systems, like Moodle and Canvas, do not prioritize this goal
  • Second, to practice SNA with our own ‘learning traces’, system log data2 need to be somehow exposed to users. Traditional systems are less transparent in this area.

If you haven’t used these tools mentioned above, no worries. I will provide detailed guidelines to get you started (see Section 1.4). Many of us would be venturing out of our comfort zones. (SO DO I – because I cannot stop trying new things :-).) I hope we will all learn a great deal about SNA and beyond.

Have fun!

  1. Note that the description of models introduced here may not fit the philosophical worldview you feel comfortable with or subscribe to. Refer back to Section @ref{threelevels} for an earlier discussion we had about aligning methodology and philosophical viewpoints.

  2. The sna package provides a function named ego.extract for the same purpose.