The study investigated Undergraduates’ perception towards the use of social media for collaborative learning purposes. It was conducted at the Nnamdi azikiwe university, Anambra State, Nigeria. Two objectives and two null hypotheses was used to investigate the study. A sample of 300 students were randomly selected from three Faculties. Simple random stratified sampling techniques was used for the study and the instrument used to collect data was a structured questionnaire entitled Undergraduates’ perception towards the use of social media for collaborative learning purposes with 42 items. Mean score, ANOVA, Z-test and Scheffe’s model were the statistical tools for the study. The Instrument was given to experts in the field of educational technology to ensure its validity. Test retest was applied to ensure reliability of the instrument and a reliability coefficient of 0.84 was obtained. It was found that social media are used for collaborative learning in terms of quick growth in knowledge and information. It addition it was found that undergraduates bound with close and prospective groups for change. It is recommended that Universities should be acquainted with students want and concern in the schools.     

1.1              Background to the Study    
Education is at the centre of a nation’s development; through education people are empowered both academically and in skill acquisition. Research has also revealed that a nation that has a strong stable and functional educational system invariably has not only the powerful instrument to fight and eliminate poverty but also has a solid foundation to build a sustainable economy upon. The benefit of a good educational system to any nation is further emphasized when the United States Embassy in Nigeria stated that education is the most “important way to approach community (national) development. A sound educational system is considered to be a prerequisite to achieving progress, from the individual to the society to the economy.” Manu Goel (2008) corroborates this thought when he observed that: “the quality of human resource of a nation is easily judged by the number of literate population living in it.” This implies that education is fundamental for a nation aspiring to achieve both human growth and sustainable development. Perhaps the most captivating view of the role of education in the reformation process is captured by Licuanan (2003).
The introduction of social media to education has made it possible for students to learn adequately with ease and convenience. Social media are fast becoming very popular means of both interpersonal and public communication in Nigeria and the world at large. Social media are modern ways for interactive communication channels through which people connect to one another and share ideas. What distinguishes the social media from the conventional means of communication is their interactive nature which allows the audience to participate in it from any part of the world they reside. McQuail (2010) differentiates the social media from the traditional mass media when he noted that “traditional mass communication was essentially one-directional, while the new forms of communication are essentially interactive.” This interactive aura of the new media confers an unprecedented popularity on them. The social media by their nature have the capabilities of educating, informing, entertaining and „inflaming‟ the audience. This capacity is possibly what Osahenye (2012) refers to as “unstoppable power of the social media.” As a novel phenomenon, it is necessary to examine how Nigerian students use the new means of communication. This is because students‟ contribution as youths can make or mar any nation. Okolloh cited by Essoungou (2010), explains that, “the new communication technology is one of the few ways that young Africans can bypass the inefficiencies in the system that allow the status quo to hold on. It lowers the barriers to entry for everyone to get involved and be heard.” A study like this shall help to ascertain whether students‟ use of the social media could be regulated or not. This is obviously because the disposition of people of a given community could shape the media in existence there, just like a cerebral media scholar Anim (2007) aptly notes that “societies greatly influence the operations and functions of the media that operate within those societies.” The manner in which the social media were used and the role they played in the recent uprising which rocked the Middle-East popularly referred to as Arab Spring could be deciphered as credence to the above academic’s observation. Now just like radio or television stations, social media sites spread everywhere in Nigeria and are bound to be sprouting as technologies continue to improve; however, the problem lies in the point that the purposes which the users apply the new media for are still obscure. This is what Folorunso, Vincent, Adekoya and Adewale (2010), observed when they argue generally that, in Africa, social media networking site is becoming widely spread than it has ever been before and it tends to be majorly accepted by the youths. Yet the widespread adoption by users of these sites is not clear, as it appears that people’s perception of this technology is diverse.”
The development of social media network and web 2.0 technologies has been monumental (Lenhart et al., 2010), where social media technology has managed to disseminate into the every aspect of the users’ personal life in terms of contributing content, sharing photos, liking comments or contents or game interaction. Such dissemination is specifically evident in institutions of higher learning where technology has changed students’ communication, collaboration and learning. In this regard, social media can be described as the several technological systems that are linked to both collaboration and community (Joosten, 2012). Despite the fact that researchers have not reached a consensus on an accurate definition of the term (Kaplan & Haenlein, 2010), social media is often viewed through examples like social networking sites, blogs, Wikis, multimedia platforms and virtual social worlds (Barnes & Lescault, 2011). This study focuses on the networking sites reflecting the permeating existence of social media like Facebook, Myspace and LinkedIn. In fact social networking sites are utilized similar to social networking or online social networks and are based on the web allowing users to create their personal profiles, content, and share messages by connecting with other uses of the system (Boyd & Ellison, 2007). Other studies use a more up-to-date term called the web 2.0 when addressing both social network and other social media (Gruzd, 2011). This study is aimed to examining the relationship between intention to use social media for collaborative learning and engagement among undergraduate students of Nnamdi azikiwe university, Nigeria.
The potential of social media to increase interactivity and collaboration to benefit learning was recognised early (Desilets & Paquet, 2005; Knobel & Lankshear, 2006; Richardson, 2006) and considerable research to date has been conducted in higher institutions of learning. However, in the schooling sector, empirical research literature is more limited, despite scholarly interest in the benefits of social media applications (Bryant, 2007; Burnett & Merchant, 2011; Lankshear & Knobel, 2011). This study on the perception of students in the use of social media for collaborative learning by among the undergraduate students of Nnamdi azikiwe university, Nigeria, will fill the loopholes on the issue of social media for collaborative learning among undergraduate students in Nigeria.

1.2     Statement of the Problem
The internet today is unarguably the most important and reliable source upon which information is derived. The growing dimensions of the use of social media by students and other learned individuals to source for information cannot be underestimated. Thus, students spend more time and pay more attention to social media than they do for their studies and this affects their academic performance and if they do not learn to balance the two, it will continue to have adverse effects on their academic achievement (Osharive, 2015). In addition to this, the study conducted by Maya (2015), revealed that media use brings about lower academic performance, low self perceptions and less interest in educational oriented carriers. Academic excellence plays an important role in the life of an individual; whether in the family, social, workplace, in an institution or even among peers. Much emphasis is laid on academic performance because of the role it plays in the life of an individual as far as a successful life and respect is concerned in every aspect of life. As a result of this, students must be concerned with the ways they can improve their academic performance (Kyoshaba, 2009). Studies have also revealed that social media affects students’ command use of English most especially when writing examinations. They tend to use short- handwriting to chat (wot, wat instead of what, dz, ds instead of this, d instead of the, urs, urz instead of yours) with friends and get used to it thereby replicating the same errors during examinations (Obi, Bulus, Adamu and Sala’at, 2012). Today students at all levels higher institutions level have been engaged in the use of social media sites. This research therefore seeks to investigate the perception of students in the use of social media for collaborative learning by using the undergraduate students of Nnamdi azikiwe university, Nigeria, as a case study.

1.3     Objectives of the Study
The main objective of this study is to investigate the perception of students in the use of social media for collaborative learning by using the undergraduate students of Nnamdi azikiwe university, Nigeria, as a case study. However, the specific objectives are:
1.                   To ascertain the perception of students towards the use of social media
To identify the preferred social media sites used by students for collaborative learning....

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Item Type: Project Material  |  Attribute: 52 pages  |  Chapters: 1-5
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