Date of this Version
Purpose – The very purpose of this research work is to explore the use of Social Media (SM) in collaborating learning among the postgraduate students of three central universities in India; University of Hyderabad (UoH), English and Foreign Language University (EFLU) and Pondicherry University (PU).
Design/Methodology - A descriptive random survey method is adhered to this study with a framed questionnaire to collect data from the postgraduate students of these three universities. A total of three hundred questionnaires (100 per university) are distributed individually out of it, two hundred and fifteen (71.66 %) questionnaires are retrieved back from the respondents. Questionnaires are categorized into four parts; 1) Demographics, 2) general uses of SM, 3) purpose of using SM, and 4) barriers in using SM. For data analysis, SPSS 22 version and Microsoft Excel sheet are used.
Findings - Amongst the respondents, majority 60.93% were males, whereas the remaining 39.07% were females. In addition to it, 111 respondents (51.67%) were below the age group of 25 years and the rest 104 respondents (48.37%) were above 25 years. The study confirms that all the respondents use social media (social media: 100 percent, n = 215). The results show that the majority of students in the survey from all three universities are using YouTube. Result also finds that smartphones hold the top position in terms of devices used for accessing SM tools. Further, it highlights that male respondents are using more SM than their female counterparts’. In addition to it, the survey shows that, interestingly, lack of adequate security and lack of reliability of information are significant barriers.
Research Limitations - The study has taken only three central universities into its consideration. The population of the study is also only limited to postgraduate students.
Implications – The study underpins the use of SM in an essential aspect of higher education in a developing country, India.
Originality/Value – The study is the first one of its kind where it explores cross-institutional research in terms of the use of SM among the postgraduate students in collaborative learning.