The use of social media in learning environment is growing and becoming more popular, as students reach for new methods to maintain their social status quo and exchange information. This usage has also increased with the accessibility of mobile phones and other gadgets like tablets among others.
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Moreover, the use of social media is also growing and becoming popular amongst teachers, as they explore new methods to keep communication with students or facilitate learning (Wasserman, & Faust, 1994, p. 21).
The effects of using social media such as Facebook and twitter are increasingly being assimilated into actions, thoughts, and relationships of individuals in the society and learning institutions; therefore, the usage of social media has numerous implications on stakeholders, in the education sector (Pearlman, & Abram, 2010, p. 12).
The use of social media such as Facebook in learning institutions should be banned, as it causes insomnia and lack of concentration in students.
Students, who spend most time using social media, such as Facebook and twitter, find it hard to concentrate in class because of the addictive nature of the social media. Several researches on students who spent most of their time on social media indicate that they have a shorter concentration lifespan and most often than not, they are permanently distracted.
A physiological research by Professor Larry Rossen, revealed that students studying something valuable to them lost concentration span within three minutes, because they were out of task, and thus social media such as Facebook should be banned from schools (Awl, 2009, p. 52).
Secondly, social media such as Facebook and twitter reduce concentration in class because of their extensive multi-tasking nature associated with them. For instance, most students spend their time listening to music or sending short messages to their friends while doing their homework (Zillman & Vorderer, 2000, p. 24).
In most cases, students find themselves turning their attention to the music or instant texting thus making grammatical mistakes in their assignments or taking more time to finish their assignments (Vander, 2008, p. 32). Teachers find difficulties while marking assignments because of use of slang language, abbreviations, and poor flow of ideas; thus, restrictions should be put on use of social media or it must be banned altogether.
Moreover, social media such as Facebook, Google chat, and twitter reduce concentration amongst students because of their time consuming nature. The time spent on social media amongst the youths averages six hours or so per day, which could be otherwise turned into productive study time.
Cases of students skipping classes to watch television programs or play video games are rampant in learning institutions, thus diverting the students’ attention to studies. In spite of having some useful educational programs aired through the social media, such as television, most of the television programs, which are popular amongst the students, involve violence and sexual content.
In most cases, students divert their concentration in class to imaginations and thoughts from watching dirty movies and listening to filthy music. The side effects of such programs are losing concentration in class and indiscipline cases thus the social media programs should be censored from learning institution.
The use of social media such as Facebook and twitter encourages illicit relationships amongst teachers and students that lead to their reduced concentration in the class. Teachers use social media to improve their communication with the students or educate them.
However, some secret online communication male teachers and the female students or the vice versa may go on, which is against the professional codes of practice. Therefore, the use of social media such as Facebook in the learning institutions should be banned.
Furthermore, overuse of social media hinders personal and social development of students thus reducing their concentration on group work and other learning activities (Babones, 2009, p. 12). Students who spend most of their time on social media, such as Facebook and twitter, miss out the opportunity of interacting face-to-face with other students, thus tend to have secretive lives and mal social habits.
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In addition, students spend most of their time allocated for games and sports on social media Facebooking, chatting, or sending instant messages, which denies them the opportunity of physical activity and relaxation of mind.
Physical activity is vital in releasing fatigue and allowing free circulation of blood thus, overuse of social media by the students denies them the opportunity to rejuvenate, leading to reduced concentration in class.
Moreover, most students divert their attention to computer games and video games on the social media tools that reduce their concentration on co-curricular activities in the school hence social media has no place in education and should be banned in learning institutions.
Social media such as Facebook causes insomnia because of its time consuming nature. Typically, students find it useful or entertaining to know whether their fellow peers have gone to bed or not (Marmort, 2005, p. 18).
Constant communication amongst the students or even individuals helps in keeping intimate relationships and sharing sleep status. In most cases, students find themselves spending long sleepless hours waiting for a phone call from a friend, chatting, or waiting for a short message reply.
More often than not, students are forced by circumstances to change their sleep patterns in a bid to keep constant communication with their intimate friends or watch a television program or a movie. Moreover, much time is spend on social media such as Facebook and twitter to exchange information on time schedules, make comments on lectures, or even exchange assignments.
In spite of some beneficial effects of the social media amongst the students, cases of insomnia are inevitable because of lack of enough sleep or disturbed sleep. Insomnia may lead to mental failure, memory loss, and poor concentration in class thus social media such as Facebook and twitter should be censored from the school (Pearlman, & Abram, 2010, p. 32).
Moreover, cases of insomnia may be a result of drug abuse, which may be based on social media. Most social media programs involve violent scenes and immorality that is attributed to the use of drugs. The main actors of the scene show their prowess by use of hallucination drugs, depressants, and having multiple sexual partners (Bryant, & Zillmann, 2002, p. 8).
The side effects of such programs on the mass media encourage the use of drugs amongst the students. Abuse of drugs such as heroin, marijuana, and khat may cause insomnia and poor health of the ones who take them. In addition, students who are addicted to drugs and spend much time on the social media such as Facebook influence others to use the drugs or peddle them.
Students with insomnia have poor concentration in the class and reduce day light activity. Moreover, insomnia leads to poor health because of reduced appetite or appetite loss, stress, and depression; therefore, social media should be banned from schools (Sparks, 2012, p. 38).
Furthermore, overuse of social media causes insomnia because of the change of sleeping patterns amongst the students. More often than not, students spend sleepless nights chatting or watching a movie. The change of the sleep patterns affects the circadian rhythm of the body that may in turn cause insomnia.
However, change of sleep patterns may have beneficial effects in meeting deadlines and meeting specific personal needs such as attending early lectures. In summary, students should adhere to the sleep programs set by the schools and thus the use of social medial in learning institutions should be banned (Bryant & Thompson, 2002, p. 13).
In conclusion, the use of social media in learning institutions has become widespread, and the boundaries of the social networking sites continue to expand amongst teachers and students. In fact, social media such as Facebook and MySpace have improved communication amongst the teachers and students.
In spite of using social media for online communication in learning institutions, students are faced with challenges of reduced concentration and insomnia thus reducing their performance in school.
Moreover, social media leads to poor personal and social development of the students thus reducing their concentration in their studies. While social media such as Facebook, MySpace and blogging continues to be embraced in the educational field due to technological advancement, the challenges of their use amongst students far outweigh their beneficial effects thus should be banned from schools.
Awl, D. (2009). Facebook Me! A Guide to Having Fun With Your Friends and Promoting Your Projects on Facebook. Berkeley: Peachpit Press.
Babones, S. (2009). Social inequality and Public Health. United Kingdom: The Policy Press.
Bryant, J., & Thompson, S. (2002). Fundamentals of Media Effects. New York: McGraw- Hill.
Bryant, J., & Zillmann, D. (2002). Media Effects: Theory and Research. London: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Publishers.
Marmort, M. (2005). The Status Syndrome:How Social Standing Affects Our Health and Longeivity. New York: Henry Holt and Company.
Pearlman, L., & Abram, C. (2010). Facebook for Dummies. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons.
Sparks, G. (2012). Media Effects Research:A Basic Overview. Belmont: Cengage Learning.
Vander, E. (2008). The Missing Manual. Calfornia: O’Reilly Media, Inc.
Wasserman, S., & Faust, K. (1994). Social Network Analysis:Methods and Application. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Zillman, D., & Vorderer, P. (2000). Media Entertainment: The Psychology of Its Appeal. United Kingdom: Taylor & Francis.