Understanding the Role of Weibo in Health-­‐seeking Process of Chinese International Students in Canada

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Title: Understanding the Role of Weibo in Health-­‐seeking Process of Chinese International Students in Canada
Authors: Liang, Wenzhuo
Date: 2015
Abstract: In recent years, the growth effect of technology has reached many heights, such as the more frequent use of new media platforms, like Twitter, Weibo, and Facebook. The technological revolution has enabled people to communicate across thousands of miles at a greater speed. With such advantages, social media can also be used to inform, educate, and empower people about health related issues. And, indeed, today there is a large number of people seeking health information online and through social media applications. However, there is a lack of data on social media adoption within broader public health settings, particularly among Chinese international students. Against this backdrop, this study aimed to understand the role of Sina Weibo in the lives of Chinese international students in Canada and their online health related information seeking process in particular. Results from quantitative and qualitative content analyses revealed that Sina Weibo could be seen as a virtual community. More importantly, its role from being an “imagined” to a “real” community is evidenced in its creation of various social capital for Chinese international students in terms of providing health related information and emotional support to make their overseas lives easier.
URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10393/34902
CollectionCommunication - Mémoires // Communication - Research Papers
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