An Introduction to Social Network Theory

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This paper focuses on network theory and Social Network Analysis (SNA). It clarifies the concept of a social network and helps identify the characteristic elements of social network theorizing. The piece acts as a particularly useful foundation by defining some of the key terms and concepts used in SNA research. The author originally presented this paper at the 2012 International Networking in the Society of Jesus Conference. It draws heavily from the author’s 2011 co-publication, “On Network Theory”, which is a further foundational piece also available in this portal.

This paper will be useful for practitioners and researchers interested in better understanding the terms and concepts of social networks, network theory, social media and social network analysis (SNA) research. It will be helpful to those looking to familiarize themselves with the key terms and concepts in the field, and acts as a foundational piece for beginners.

Daniel S. Halgin