LHU receives grant for social media literacy

LOCK HAVEN — Earlier this spring, six research teams, including one from Lock Haven University, were chosen to receive a grant through the NCAA Innovations in Research and Practice Grant Program, designed to enhance college athletes’ psychosocial well-being and mental health.

Drs. Brian Foster and Patricia Lally’s research on online social media literacy for student-athletes was among those chosen for funding by the grant.

According to the NCAA, the program is aimed at funding projects that will bring tangible benefits to college athletes when used by individuals or by NCAA member schools’ athletics departments.

According to the university’s team’s findings, up to 40 % of college athletes have received no social media training, and those who have received training often have reported being unsatisfied.

“Social media training is important because there have been cases of lost reputation, eligibility, scholarships and future career prospects resulting from poor social media behaviors,” Foster said.

To address the issue, the team will create an online social media literacy training program, consisting of four self-paced modules that will highlight showcasing one’s character, assessing message credibility, enriching sport performance and managing cyberbullying and the program is planned to be pilot tested with student-athletes this fall.