Monday, March 18
1:30 PM-5:00 PM
Sunset 2

Using Instagram and Snapchat in Education – Student Engagement, Instruction and Assessment

Workshop ID: 54146
  1. aaa
    Cassandra Drake
    San Diego State University
  2. aaa
    Alison Sternal
    San Diego State University

Abstract: As modern society continues to extend into the digital world, it becomes increasingly important for educators to understand and acknowledge social media as an authentic form of communication within student culture. The purpose of this workshop is to introduce the utilization of Instagram and Snapchat for student engagement, instruction and assessment. By implementing these popular social media applications in educational contexts, educators call upon students’ prior knowledge and place value on an important aspect of their students’ culture. The instructor will provide an introduction to social media engagement and give examples of how these applications can be implemented across various disciplines and subject matter. Attendees will learn how to use both applications in the context of their own educational setting and receive hands-on guidance in setting up accounts, creating communications, and applying the applications for instructional and/or assessment purposes. Attendees will take an active role in their learning process by sharing ideas, creating small projects and interacting with other attendees via the two applications. By the end of this 3.5 hour workshop, attendees will have a solid foundation in social media engagement and an action plan for utilization of one or both applications within their area of interest.


A) Attendees will gain a functional understanding of how the social media platforms Instagram and Snapchat can be used in an educational setting B) Attendees will establish accounts on both platforms and learn the basic skills needed for utilization in an educational setting including ethical usage. C) Attendees will learn how to use Instagram for student engagement, instruction and assessment via hands-on activities. D) Attendees will learn how to use Snapchat for student engagement, instruction and assessment via hands-on activities. E) Attendees will engage in instructor lead activities which will require them to utilize add-on applications to enhance engagement with Instagram and Snapchat F) Attendees will enjoy guided assistance in brainstorming and creating prompts to be used in their specific areas of interest

Topical Outline

(H-O signifies a hands-on activity which the entire group will do individually on their personal devices with support from the instructors) Part 1 – Welcome {30 minutes} - Greetings and opening activity – “Let’s take a selfie” - Introduction to Instagram and Snapchat including why the two applications are surpassing Facebook as the most popular among young people. - Discussion of algorithms and prime times for usage - Ethical considerations for application usage - Outline of workshop objectives Part 2 – Instagram {1 hour and 30 minutes } 1) Overview of Instagram uses for student engagement 2) Demonstration of Instagram student engagement 3) Introduction to Canva and creation of promotion (H-O) 4) Overview of Instagram uses for instruction and assessment 5) Demonstration of Instagram instructional utilization 6) Demonstration of Instagram assessment utilization 7) Navigating the application and linking to Facebook (H-O) 8) Building your account, content and establishing your voice (H-O) 9) Creating prompts for instruction and assessments (H-O) ~ 15 minute break for restrooms and networking ~ Part 3 – Snapchat {1 hour and 15 minutes} 1) Overview of Snapchat uses for student engagement 2) Navigating the application (H-O) 3) Introduction to Bitmoji and creating your personal Bitmoji (H-O) 4) Linking the applications and connecting with your audience (H-O) 5) Demonstration of Snapchat student engagement 6) Overview of Snapchat uses for instruction and assessment 7) Demonstration of Snapchat instructional/assessment utilization (H-O)


Attendees should have basic experience with social media applications and smart devices. Apple or android smart device with Instagram, Snapchat Canva and Bitmoji downloaded; Predetermined audience for intended communication and engagement.

Experience Level



Cassandra has experience with platforms which are gaining popularity for their highly creative nature such as Instagram and Snapchat. Her qualitative research interests are strongly tied to digital literacies and visual methodologies. She has conducted ongoing assessment studies which use Instagram and Snapchat as data collection tools in the graduate and undergraduate university context. Through this experience she developed a strong understanding of these applications, their algorithms and best practices for getting the most reach with posts. As a teacher educator, Cassandra encourages her students to use Instagram and Snapchat to present their learning, engage with their subject matter and connect with other educators. Many course activities require students to create or utilize visuals and other multimodal means of communication to represent their learning, understanding and self-reflection. She has curated a professor profile which she uses to post pertinent course/campus information and repost exemplar student work. This account is also used to guide students’ overall engagement by creating stories and networking with other campuses, departments, school districts, teacher practitioners, teacher educators and teacher researchers. She has developed ethical practices for using and engaging with social media for students and faculty as well as provided application coaching for individuals new to social media. She has aided in the content building and curation of a half dozen Instagram accounts which are used for professional, academic and marketing purposes.


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