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Social Media amongst the Student Population Report

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Updated: Dec 11th, 2019

Executive Summary

This is a formal report about the way students use social media as a common aspect of modern the informational era. The report begins with an introduction of the subject in the given context, with a brief description of the current trends in social media amongst the student population.

There is a detailed summary of various types of socially acceptable media such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google; among other common networking sites that are common among the youth. For the purpose of this report, there is also a discussion of some of the changes that have been observed in the past five years regarding the way students receive information and news.

As it will be observed in this report, there has been a great transformation on the way students receive news and crucial information regarding their studies. This is a clear evidence of how modern technology has contributed at improving students’ lives in various grounds. Finally, there is an overview of economical as well as technological factors that are likely to influence students’ decision to choose a particular manner of consuming media.

Introduction

The use of technology through social media sites is increasingly becoming a common trend in the contemporary world. Social media simply refers to all types of media applied in the current world to enable and facilitate social interaction among people. Interaction, networking, and collaboration of humans through social media platforms are perceived to have been facilitated by the current technological advancements.

The use of computers, among other systems of modern technology has dramatically transformed the way people interact with each other. As it would be observed, the use of social media has increasingly become a common practice among students. Constant application of various mobile and web-based programs and applications has for the last few years been effective in helping students navigate various networking sites of their choice, either for fun or for academic-related objectives.

With the presence of numerous social media platforms, students have been able to search, discover, and exchange new information, thus improving their social life and understanding on different aspects surrounding their lives. Social media has really played a key role in creating a more collaborative culture among students, especially those in higher educational institutions. In fact, the benefits associated with the usage of social media by students are immense than the disadvantages.

Social media platforms serve as a primary means of interaction for the current generation. Some of the common trends in social media amongst the student population include increased socialization, communication, and knowledge on various topics of concern (Margaryan, Littlejohn & Vojt 2011).

Socialization through social media has become a major part of life for many students in the modern world, especially with the current boom in electronics and other forms of modern technology. The habit of interpersonal communication and interaction through computers and mobile devices has intensified greatly over the last several years.

Social media technologies and sites such as Facebook and twitter enables students to interact with each other freely on grounds where are able to exchange information and images, among other social aspects. Students have also found social media interfaces to be useful in enabling multiple-way discussions that would facilitate discovery and sharing of new ideas and information.

Establishment of a more effective two-way communication and interaction between students and their tutors over social media platforms is known to play a crucial role in delivering personalized learning experiences.

Some of the various types of socially acceptable media used in the current world to enhance students’ communication and interaction include things such as video blogs, podcasts, and webcasts. Various learning institutions have adopted the idea of utilizing these platforms to share important information with their students.

Besides, the use of blogs as effective discussion mediums for learners and faculty has been common in most modern universities and colleges. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and My Space are arguably the other most common social media platforms among the students, whose role in academic disciplines cannot be overestimated (Valenzuela, Park & Kee 2009). Other popular computer-mediated applications that have been popular in enhancing socialization among learners are; Yahoo, LinkedIn and Google.

However, Facebook, among all the above social media platforms, has in the recent past garnered a great deal of attention and interest from allover the world, owing to its engaging features. No wonder, the idea and focus behind this popular social media tool was first conceived inside the social networks of university students at Harvard.

Ever since its inception less than a decade ago, Facebook has always emerged as the most popular and heavily-used social media web site among students. One of the most interesting features about this online platform is its ability to facilitate effective interaction of its users through live chatting and sharing of photographs, among other forms of interaction (Livingstone & Brake 2009).

Through this wonderful social platform, lecturers and school administrators can effectively communicate with their students on important issues through wall posts and event notifications. YouTube, MySpace, and Twitter are also very common when it comes to social interaction over the internet. Just like Facebook, the use of these platforms among students has also been observed to have an academic-oriented focus, thus helping them improve their studies.

For the last four or five years, there have been great changes in the way students receive information and news, thanks to modern technological facilities. It should be observed here that, modern forms of technologies, and particularly social media technologies such as the ones discussed in this report have transformed the way students would access information regarding various study disciplines.

Unlike in the past where communication and exchange of information could only be based on traditional ways that were not so reliable, things are much different with modern technology practices. Today, social media solutions through various networking websites provide students with a quick access of information and news at a very minimal cost (Hargittai 2007).

Unlike in the past, where one would need to purchase everything they needed to read, watch or listen, things are so different nowadays, with the advent of the internet, from where students can access and download soft material for leisure and academic purposes.

No wonder, students in the current world can directly access lectures from their lecturers and professors through web meetings and video conferencing, thus escaping any challenges of mobility that may cost them their lessons.

With modern technological tools such as tablet computers and 3G mobile phones, students can easily access all the information in the world, through social media interfaces and search engines like Google and Yahoo. More importantly, desktop computers, laptop computers, and other word processors that can access the internet are widely used by students to access and watch live TV channels and news. All these have made learning easy, thus improving educational needs for many learners across the world.

Laptop computers and mobile phones are the most proficient technological systems used by many students today, as far as social media is concerned. Other technological tools and equipment that may be useful here would include netbooks, smart phones, tablet devices, and video game systems. Students from various learning institutions allover the world use these devices to access social media content from the internet.

However, a student’s decision to select a particular way of consuming media is normally influenced by a number of economic and technological factors. Modern technological equipment and systems, particularly those with improved features are sold at a cost beyond the financial ability of many students, thus forcing them to go for the poor quality systems that they could afford in the market (Lan & Falcone 1997).

This economical decision comes with its own disadvantages to the learners, since the cheap systems usually don’t last, and this would mean they would have to go to shop on a regular basis, if they have to continue enjoying the diverse benefits of social media. The biggest technological factors affecting the use of social media among students has been the increased pace of innovation and invention, as adopted by some leading technological companies in the world.

For example, iPhones and iPads by the Apple, Inc represent the highest levels of achievement in smart phones and tablet computers, respectively, and it is actually for this specific reason why many generation Y students across the world would like to be associated with any of these two brands.

Frequent use of social media comes with many benefits to students, especially those who have just begun their lessons in colleges and universities. It has been observed that, new students who use social media regularly as an interaction platform usually gain a lot by experience on how they can interact with other key segments within the school, such as institutional agents and peers, compared to those who don’t use social media interfaces or use who rarely use them.

In other words, this helps them to shape positive thoughts about their new setting or environment. However, despite the many benefits associated with the use of social media by students, there is also a big concern that frequent or continuous use of the trend can sometimes hinder students’ engagements in school, thus contributing to their failure.

Conclusion

As it has been reflected in this report, the application of social media is rampant among the current generation of students, who tend to rely on it so much for social and academic purposes. It is obviously clear from this report that, the advent of computer and mobile phone technologies has largely contributed to improved human communication and interactions through social media interfaces.

Different types of socially acceptable media which have proved to be of significant use to students of different levels have been observed in this report to indicate and emphasize the value of social media in learning institutions, and by the students themselves.

As it has been observed from this report, the use of modern technologies has greatly improved the way students would access information and news. Finally, the report has closed with an overview of economical and technological factors that are likely to influence the usage of social media by students.

Reference List

Hargittai, E 2007, ‘Whose space? Differences among users and non-users of social network sites’, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, vol. 13 no. 1, pp. 276-297.

Lan, Z & Falcone, S 1997, ‘Factors influencing Internet use—a policy model for electronic government information provision’, Journal of Government Information, vol. 24 no. 4, pp. 251-257.

Livingstone, S & Brake, D 2009, ‘On the rapid rise of social networking sites: New findings and policy implications’, Children & society, vol. 24 no. 1, pp. 75-83.

Margaryan, A, Littlejohn, A & Vojt, G 2011, ‘Are digital natives a myth or reality? University students’ use of digital technologies’, Computers & Education, vol. 56 no. 2, pp. 429-440.

Valenzuela, S, Park, N & Kee, K 2009, ‘Is There Social Capital in a Social Network Site? Facebook Use and College Students’ Life Satisfaction, Trust, and Participation’, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, vol. 14 no. 4, pp. 875-901.

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