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The primary purpose of this study was to examine how well JMC students in UB used social media apps and platforms to disseminate school-related information.

The study’s objectives were to: investigate the role of social media platforms in JMC students’ interaction at the University of Buea; investigate the effectiveness of social media apps in disseminating school-related information among students; and investigate the extent to which social media apps ensure group collaboration.

The method used is quantitative. The quantitative method deals with numerical data which is why this method is used here because the researcher wishes to sample the opinions of many JMC students of the University of Buea. Questionnaires were used to collect data.

These Questionnaires were structured to meet the aspirations of the research. Majority of students were of the opinion that social media help students in learning online. To a greater extent, students used social media platforms in sending vital   information.

Majority of the respondents admitted that students used social media platforms in communicating with other students. Most students also do assignment online to a greater extent; the evaluation of students is done online as lecturers sometimes send Continuous assessment marks online.

The findings also revealed that Majority of the respondents have used WhatsApp and Facebook foe more than 2 years and more than 5years respectively.

It is recommended that JMC students should reduce the number of hours they spend on social media. It is also recommended that JMC students should use social media platform for good purposes like publishing news articles.



1.1 Background of the study

Gone are the days when teachers and administrators needed to be present in class to pass information to their students.   Technology has made things much easier with the introduction of the internet and the social media (Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, and Whatsapp).

The internet is a global computer network providing a variety of information and communication facilities, consisting of interconnected networks using standardized communication protocols. The Internet grew out of the Advanced Research Projects Agency’s Wide Area Network (then called ARPANET) established by the US Department Of Defense in 1960s for collaboration in military research among business and government laboratories (ANDREWS, 2013). With the internet, everyone can access most platforms for research and the social media to communicate with other people.

The internet has made it possible for every teacher or lecturer to easily communicate their information or give an assignment through any of these media platforms before even coming to class and students on their part can easily relate to their teachers and lecturers through these social media platforms (Facebook and WhatsApp). Social media which came as a result of the coming of the “new media” is the collection of online communication channels dedicated to community-based input, interaction, content sharing and collaboration has really contributed a lot in the interaction between students and lecturers in the University of Buea.

The new media which came in to existence around the 1990s(Rangwala, 2017),saw the introduction of many social media platforms where people can communicate and share information as long as they are connected to the internet.

Though, when it was introduced, not everyone was able to connect or had internet access at that time.  Smartphones were not even introduced in the market.  But today, most students and lecturers can’t live without social media. In fact, they scroll through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp and many more just to get in touch with other people for many reasons.

Unlike the “old media”; television, radio, and print media which doesn’t require any internet connection. The new media has to do with those digital media that are interactive, incorporate two-way communication and involved in some form of computing and requires an internet connection. And this has gone a long way to shortening the distance among people all over the world, especially through Facebook and WhatsApp.

Facebook was launched on February 4, 2004 with the name “The Facebook”.  It was founded by Mark Zuckerberg with his college roommates and fellow Harvard University students Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes (Bellis, 2019).

The original purpose of Facebook, or “The Facebook” as it was known then, was to allow Harvard students to use their email addresses and photos to connect with other students at the school (McFadden, 2019). 

Membership to the website was at first restricted to Harvard students. But by September 2006, it was open to everyone with a valid email address along with an age range of thirteen and above.  Since its inception, Facebook has jumped above all expectations, and has gone above and beyond what many believed would have been possible at its beginning.

Facebook is now the top social media website of the world, in which millions of people around the world are using to communicate, educate, sell and buy their product. This is to showcase how popular this platform has become.  Since its creation, Face book has become the home to average web users, celebrities, businesses and members of Congress.

What started off as a place for college students to connect with each other has grown into the world’s largest social network consisting over seventy languages around the world.  Since its creation in February 2004, Facebook has become a spectacular success by creating a massive new domain in which millions of social interactions are played out every day(Brij Mohan Gupta, 2015).

With the desire to continue dominating, and to connect more people, Facebook decided to buy WhatsApp which is another social media platform that connects lots of people around the world.

Facebook was able to acquired WhatsApp with the sum of $19 billion in the year 2014 (Heath, 2017). WhatsApp, a text messaging app which was launched in 2009 and used widely across the globe, stole headlines with its initial $16 billion bid from Facebook. In 2013, the app lost $138 million and brought in $10.2 million in revenue (DEUTSCH, 2019). And in 2014 Facebook took over the control of the app

WhatsApp is now one of the most popular messaging platforms in the age of the internet, it is without a doubt a modern-day success story. From humble beginnings to widespread adaptation.

It was founded by Brian Acton and Jan Koum in 2009 after they left their job at Yahoo(PAHWA, 2019).WhatsApp is truly a success story that started with former Yahoo employees that took an idea and made it into one of the most successful apps for instant messaging in the world. Brian Acton and Jan Koum first met as Yahoo employees and then left the company to pursue a different path.

They thought of creating an iPhone app since they saw the potential for mobile and then ran with. It didn’t take long for them to develop the app in 2009. The name was inspired by Koum and the name has stuck throughout the years.

The idea behind the initial development was to create an app that would have a person’s status beside his name. The app provides a simple interface with no ads that appeal to users, allowing them to communicate with other WhatsApp users either in groups or individually (Kishunda, 2018). And with it being part of Facebook, it has acquire a lot

In August 2014, WhatsApp was the most globally popular messaging app, with more than 600 million users. By early January 2015 WhatsApp had about 700. 

According to Information made published by J. Clement, November 20th 2019. As of October 2019, 1.6 billion users were accessing the WhatsApp messenger on a daily basis. Since its acquisition by Facebook in 2014, it became one of the most popular mobile social app world wide

Those two social media platforms (Facebook and WhatsApp) has really help in facilitating communication among students, lecturers and others around world. It enables them to communicate through text messages, video records, and audio records and why not pictures as long as there is internet connection, smart phones and computers.

1.2 Statement of the problem

The social media (Facebook and WhatsApp, Twitter, just to name a few) is taking over the world in terms of communication. People no longer wait on the “old media” as before just to get inform concerning the happenings around the world.

As these media flood the world, teachers, administrative authorities and the lecturers in universities especially the University of Buea are now using these platforms to either teach or communicate important information concerning studies and new happening around the world to their students.

The issue here is, are JMC students using these media platform for the purpose of disseminating school related information?  because with the coming of these media platforms most students turn to be distracted in class while lectures are ongoing and at times don’t even follow the lectures at all because they are either chatting online or posting their pictures online for others to see.

The main thrust of this research is to find and document information about the effective use of social media apps by among students to disseminate school related information to their mates.

Sometimes, the course delegate gets information and communicate it very late, on social media apps like whatsapp group, students tend to send immoral things and things not related to academics. Pidgin is also highly used on whatsapp groups meant for studies

This topic is developed after keen observation on the attitude of UB students using the social media especially during the Covid 19 Lockdown wherein Lectures were using social media platforms like Telegram, Google Classroom and whatsapp, It has been observed that many students tend to use social media platforms for other purposes rather than to get resourceful school related materials from the administrators.

Also, it has been noticed that most UB students don’t read their books while waiting on the lecturer to come to class and even when they are at home.

They prefer to stay and chat on these media platforms all through the day and even at night. Some even stay up all through the night talking on Facebook and WhatsApp rather than reading or sleeping and this makes them  to even attend lectures very late.

It is therefore in this light that this research seeks to exploit and discover at the end of this study the extent to which UB students use social media platforms to communicate or interact among themselves, if it is positive or negative.

1.3 Research question

1.3.1 Main Research question

  1. How does the effective use of social media apps and platforms assist in the dissemination of school related information amongst JMC students in UB

1.3.2 Specific Research Questions

These are the questions which will serve as a guide to achieving the desired results from the research objectives.

  1. What role do social media platforms play in the interaction among JMC students in the University of Buea?
  2. How effective are social media apps in disseminating school related information among students
  3. To what extent do social media apps ensure group collaboration

1.5 Objectives of the study                                                      

1.5.1 General objectives

  1. To look at the effective use of social media apps and platforms for dissemination of school related information amongst JMC students in UB

1.5.2 Specific objectives

The objective of this study is to look at

  1. To examine the role do social media platforms play in the interaction among JMC students in the University of Buea?
  2. To look at the effectiveness of social media apps in disseminating school related information among students
  3. To investigate the extent to which social media apps ensure group collaboration





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