Monday, 29 October 2012

Costs and Benefits of Facebook for Undergraduate Students

an article by Ruti Gafni (Tel Aviv–Yaffo Academic College and Open University of Israel, Tel Aviv, Israel) and Moran Deri (Tel Aviv–Yaffo Academic College, Tel Aviv, Israel) published in Interdisciplinary Journal of Information, Knowledge, and Management Volume 7 (2012)


Originally, the Facebook network was meant for students’ use on campus, but is it worthwhile for them?

Facebook is a broad source of information for students, offering correspondence between students, providing files and information exchange, and allowing new acquaintances on campus. On the other hand, Facebook includes a variety of distractions, such as uploading pictures, viewing profiles, videos, and photos of friends, chatting with friends, and playing, which lead to procrastination and injures the learning process.

The present study was conducted in order to examine the influence of Facebook on the students’ learning process in undergraduate demanding faculties, such as engineering.

In particular, it was aimed at identifying various costs and benefits associated with the students’ use of Facebook and investigating the impact of the colleges/schools’ Facebook pages on the students’ use of Facebook for learning purposes.

A questionnaire was filled in by undergraduate students, and Facebook pages of academic institutions were examined.

Facebook was found to be particularly important among first year students, benefiting their social absorption in the campus and their learning sources, but these benefits were reduced for senior year students.

However, it was found that social activities on Facebook consumed a significant amount of the students’ time, during the surfing and even after, thus negatively affecting their learning process.

Moreover, the majority of the examined Facebook pages that were opened on the initiative of academic institutions were mostly inactive, giving no benefits to students and no incentive to use them.

Full text (PDF 17pp)

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