I'll See You On “Facebook”: The effects of computer-mediated teacher self-disclosure on student motivation, affective learning, and classroom climate

Joseph P. Mazer
Richard E. Murphy
Cheri J. Simonds


This experimental study examined the effects of teacher self-disclosure via Facebook on anticipated college student motivation, affective learning, and classroom climate. Participants who accessed the Facebook website of a teacher high in self-disclosure anticipated higher levels of motivation and affective learning and a more positive classroom climate. In their responses to open-ended items, participants emphasized possible negative associations between teacher use of Facebook and teacher credibility. Participants offered recommendations for teachers regarding the use of Facebook and other weblog services.


Teacher Self-disclosure, College Student Motivation, Affective Learning, Classroom Climate


This study details the effects teacher self-disclosure via Facebook on student motivation, affective learning, and classroom climate. Self disclosure is defined as “any message about the self that a person communicates to another” (p.1) which can vary by amount, valence (positive or negative nature), and relevance to the course content. Other factors increase mediated immediacy, “the communicative cues in mediated channels that can shape perceptions of psychological closeness between interactants,” (p.2) such as font use, language, and punctuation. Students are more likely to communicate with teachers who use immediacy behaviors. 133 students between the ages of 18-23 enrolled in a basic communications course. Teacher self-disclosure was manipulated on Facebook across three experimental groups: high, medium, and low. Students were given names of instructors from the university and asked to browse their Facebook pages. They then completed a research questionnaire that measured motivation, affective learning, classroom climate, manipulation check, and appropriateness of Facebook for a teacher, and supplementary qualitative data. Teacher self-disclosure was found to have a positive influence on student participation and affective learning. Students perceive similarities between themselves and the instructor when the instructor shares certain information.

APA Citation

Mazer, J. P., Murphy, R. E., & Simonds, C. J. (2007). I'll see you on “Facebook”: The effects of computer-mediated teacher self-disclosure on student motivation, affective learning, and classroom climate. Communication Education, 56(1), 1-17.

About the Study

Links to Article https://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&as_sdt=0%2C50&q=I’ll+see+you+on+Facebook%3A+The+effects+of+computer-mediated+teacher+self-disclosure+on+student+motivation%2C+affective+learning%2C+and+classroom+climate&btnG=
Publication Type Journal Article
In Publication Communication Education
Type of Research Quantitative
Research Design Experiments
Intervention/Areas of Study Active learning, Course, program, or institutional culture, Instructor-student interactions, Social media, Student motivation
Level of Analysis Student-level
Specific Populations Examined Undergraduates
Peer-Reviewed Yes
Specific Institutional Characteristics of Interest 4-year Institution, Bachelors-granting
Specific Course or Program Characteristics Arts and humanities, Formal sciences, Natural sciences, Social sciences, STEM
Outcome Variables of Interest Instructional effectiveness, Learning effectiveness, Satisfaction
Student Sample Size 100-199
Citing Articles https://scholar.google.com/scholar?cites=2203438706163700570&as_sdt=5,50&sciodt=0,50&hl=en