The value of using social media is being increasingly recognised among the academic community. Blogging has been identified by some researchers as a means of reaching a non-academic audience and in order to increase research citations. However, there is little research exploring this method of communication within specific disciplines. This study, therefore, explored UK psychologists’ views and experiences of blogging using an online survey, of both blog writers and non-blog writers. In addition, the study sought to determine whether those who identified as blog writers when they completed the survey, and who consented to a content analysis of their posts, were still posting regularly 12 months later. The majority of the blog writers said that they wrote blogs as a means of expressing themselves and their research. Content analysis reflected the survey findings, with research as the most common category for posts, but we identified that the intended audience for such posts appeared to be other academics. Interestingly, 37% of blog writers had stopped regularly posting at the point where posts were analysed, 12 months after the survey. Moreover, despite positive attitudes and subjective norms about blogging across the sample, we also identified that for respondents who were non-blog writers were reluctant to blog because they worried that their contribution may not be valued, or that they did not have the time. These findings highlight that there is work to do in order to convince psychologists to engage – and to continue doing so - with this medium of communication.
Jolley, DCoiffait, F
Faculty of Health and Life Sciences\Department of Psychology, Social Work and Public Health
Year of publication: 2017Date of RADAR deposit: 2017-02-15