Social media in higher education: Applying a uses and gratifications framework to the benefits of social media for learning
Thursday, June 22 10:15-10:45 AM
Social media present an important part of Millennials’ digital lives. And while there is plenty of research about how this group uses social media in their personal lives, we have very limited information about how they perceive its usefulness for educational purposes. Given this gap in the scholarly literature, the objective of this study is to apply a uses and gratifications framework to explore how today’s college students interact with and perceive the utility of social media within a classroom environment. The study uses an online survey to reach students attending classes at a midsize Midwestern university in 2015. The findings indicate that students use different communication methods to interact with friends versus faculty, and that the majority of students see a benefit in using social media for educational purposes, but some of them still have mixed feelings regarding its adoption and application in the classroom.