1.1. BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
The world is today celebrating the improvements in communication technology which has broadened the scope of communication through Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). Ufuophu and Ayobami (2012:129) observe that the ICTs include internet, satellite, cable data transmission and computer assisted equipment. Social network is a social structure made up of individuals or organizations called “nodes”, which are tied (connected) by one or more specific types of interdependency, such as friendship, kinship, common interest, financial exchange, dislike, sexual relationships or relationships of beliefs, knowledge or prestige (Adeboye, 2012, cited in Asemah and Edegoh,2012). Social network can also be referred to as a map of specified ties, such as friendship, between the nodes being studied. The nodes, to which an individual is thus connected, are the social contacts of that individual; the network can also be used to measure social capital – the value that an individual gets from the social network. Social networking sites include: Yahoo Messenger, Facebook Messenger, Blackberry Messenger (BBM), Google talk, Google+Messenger, iPhone, Androids and so on. These networking sites are used by most people to interact with old and new friends, physical or internet friends (Adeboye, 2012, cited in Asemah and Edegoh, 2012). The expansion in technology has also affected internet software, thus leading to chatting sites known by the name “social media”. With social networking sites, one can send and receive messages almost immediately. However, lack of regulation of the internet has led to its excessive use. McQuail (2008:154) avers that the internet penetrates more homes. It is a common sight to see a youth chatting in sensitive and highly organised places like church, mosque and lecture venues. Some are so carried away that even as they are walking along the high way, they keep chatting. The manufacturing and distribution of equally sophisticated cellular phones has complicated the situation, as youths no longer need to visit a cybercafé before they send and receive messages. Attention has been shifted from visible to invisible friends, while important ventures like study and writing are affected in the process. This phenomenon has become a source of worry to many who believe in knowledge and skill acquisition.
The emergence of social media as a result of advancement in technology and expansion in internet software has raised eye brows among academics on its (social media) impacts on studies. Students at all levels of learning now have divided attention to studies, as a result of available opportunities to be harnessed from social media. Whether these opportunities promote studies is a question that needs to be answered. Thus, the problem this study investigates is the effect of social media networks on the academic performance of the secondary school students learning social studies.
1.2. STATEMENT OF THE GENERAL PROBLEM
The major problem of poor academic performance in Social studies in secondary schools students in Nigerian secondary schools has led to the poor performance in examinations. These poor performances in both internal and external examinations have significantly affected the education sector negatively. A major contributor to these poor performances could as well be as a result of the advent of the social media as it has unduly influenced Nigerian students both at the secondary level and the tertiary level.
1.3. AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The major aim of the study is to examine the effect of social media on students’ performance in learning social studies. Other specific objectives of the study are to;
1. Examine the level of social media usage in secondary schools in Nigeria.
2. To determine the relationship between social media usage and academic performance in Nigeria.
3. To recommend ways of improving social studies in secondary schools in Nigeria.
1.4. RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. What is the effect of social media on students’ academic performance in learning social studies?
2. What is the level of social media usage in secondary schools in Nigeria?
3. What is the relationship between social media usage and academic performance in Nigeria?
4. What are the ways of improving social studies in secondary schools in Nigeria.
1.5. RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H0: social media does not influence students’ academic achievement in social studies.
H1: social media influences students’ performance in social studies.
1.6. SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The study would be of immense importance to students, school administrators and principals as it would reveal the effect of social media on students academic performance in learning social studies in secondary schools. The study also promises to be of immense importance to scholars and researchers who are interested in further research on the subject matter.
1.7. SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The study is restricted to the influence of social media academic achievement in social studies in secondary schools in selected secondary schools in Lagos state.
Limitations of the study
Financial constraint: Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview)
Time constraint: The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.