Research on students’ learning behaviour based on social media

Hui Jin
Shanghai International Studies University
Shanghai, China

In recent years, with the rapid development of social media based on Web 2.0 technologies, more and more undergraduate and graduate students are applying these technologies to enhance their attainment. It is important to examine the impact of such technologies on students’ learning behaviour.

This paper discusses and evaluates empirically the effect on students’ behaviour of using social media as a tool to facilitate learning. In this study, we considered four social media which are very popular among students in China — Sina microblogs, the public platform of Wechat, QQ instant chat tool and the Renren social network system — and are used as the main ways of communicating with others. The learning behaviour based on social media may occur in various learning contexts. Through both quantitative and qualitative analysis, this study examined the process and outcomes of students’ use of social media for independent or group learning. This research concluded that students’ perceptions of using social media were positive, and they adopted different social media to be engaged in different study situations and learning contexts. The results of the study provide some valuable insights into the learning performance and usability of social media, and the ways in which popular social media can be integrated into education.