Significance of social networking media in higher education- An empirical study among the students of Panjab University

Priyanka Garg, Yogesh Verma


Used by millions of people worldwide, social networking sites have altered human behaviour on the web, resulting in reduced personal inhibitions of sharing information online. The most popular social media include blogs, wikis, photo-sharing sites, Internet forums and extend to social networking utilities like personal blogs, Ning, Twitter, Bebo, MySpace and Facebook. There are three basic types of social networking websites: ‘free-for-all’ social websites, including Facebook, MySpace, and Friendster; profes­sional websites, including LinkedIn, FastPitch, and Plaxo; and industry-specific websites like I-Meet.

            Social networking site, Facebook, gained over 100 million users in the United States from 2009 to 2010: a 145% growth rate within a year (McCorvey, 2010). Also, some corporations are increasingly experimenting with the use of social networks to improve business operations (Schwarz, 2008). It should be noted that the use of social media doubled from 11% to 22% between 2008 and 2009 (Sarrel, 2010). Usage and importance of Social Networking Sites are increasing day by day.

            The present study has made an attempt to study the extent of usage and importance given to the social networking sites by the students of different departments of Panjab University.  Various on-campus students were invited to take part in the survey. Final sample constitutes students from all the departments of Panjab University. Analysis has been done using SPSS 16. Further, analysis of data has been presented in the forms of charts as well. Results of the study revealed that majority of respondents are aware of SNS. More than 50 percent of the respondents use SNS more than once a day.

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