Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Using WhatsApp Messenger for improving learners' engagement in teaching and learning: a case of undergraduate students at the Sokoine University of Agriculture, Tanzania
This study was set to investigate how WhatsApp Messenger supported learner-centred teaching and learning. Specifically, the study evaluated the level of exchange of scholarly information resources among students through WhatsApp Messenger, determined how WhatsApp supports learner-centred learning and assessed challenges influencing students when using WhatsApp Messenger in teaching and learning. The study involved undergraduate students and instructors at the Department of Records and Information Studies. It employed random sampling techniques in selecting students and purposive techniques in selecting instructors to be included in the study. Major results indicate that WhatsApp Messenger was highly adopted and used for supporting learning. All respondents were members of WhatsApp Messenger groups. Results indicate that the usage of WhatsApp Messenger has improved the accessibility of reading materials and reading culture among students. Usage of WhatsApp Messenger in learner-centred teaching and learning approaches is limited by the inadequate mobile phone storage space for downloaded scholarly contents and interruptions made by non-academic conversations made through the same application. It is concluded that if used effectively, the application may increase academic performance among students. It recommends developing WhatsApp Messenger functionalities that may facilitate the moderation of the teaching and learning process and make mobile internet services affordable.