ABSTRACTSocial media has becomea popular channel for communication and beyond in various fields. The exposureof social media has created imaginative ways of communication for businesses. Thoughsocial media has its gain and pain, it is still very powerful since manyorganizations design strategies to accommodate resources to handle social mediaplatform.

Higher education is expected o alter in future with this concern towardssocial media since the orientation of education today has made studentscentered learning mechanism to deliver holistic learning experience. Socialmedia is understood to be an innovative and an effective tool for students toinvolve in the learning process. Hence it is a need of the day to investigatestudents’ and teachers’ perception towards social media as a pedagogical toolto create a virtual learning environment that is expected to enhance theoverall learning experience. To achieve the state of implementing social media withthe traditional pedagogical approach, the research investigates the preferencesof students and teachers in social media for a mutual learning in the contextof higher education as an educational platform.

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A descriptive survey method isimplemented in this research to analyze the above agenda of the paper. Theresult demonstrates that social media is being preferred in higher education soas to actively engage students with learning process and create a flexibleenvironment for students and teachers in the universities. Keywords: Social Media,pedagogical, academics, Students centered learning, virtual learning, SocialMedia technologies INTRODUCTIONThe collaboration of ITand social media services in higher education has proved to establish a substantialchange in the attitude of both students and instructors approach towards study,teach and learn 1, 2, 3. Based on these facts on the literature worksrelated to this objective a survey of students’ and instructors’ social mediausage habits and preferences has been conducted at Ibra College of Technology in2018. This survey is mainly designed to measure the extent of media services beingused in learning and teaching as well as to create a user-friendly ambience forstudents and instructors in the university. The survey primarily focuses on themedia usage preferences of students and instructors of the Ibra College ofTechnology. The respondents were scaled based on the way media is being used bythe individual in relation with academic education like studying and teaching. Theidentification of the results aim to act as an evidence upon which morereliable predictions can be made for future trends of media usage in highereducation.

The basic idea behind this research based survey is that currentacademic education is utilizing a traditional approach like text books and journals.A combination of traditional and media based learning (Google, Wikipedia andother educational sites) can create a better educational system that isefficient and effective. The actual situation already has some former mediausage habits that can be changed with the introduction of new media. Thequestionnaire is designed to derive partial results that involve instructorsand students only from the Ibra College of Technology.

There are several otherfocused surveys exclusively on mobile learning approaches and m-learning methodsthat are released in papers 5, 6, 7. In case of short-term academiceducation the level of satisfaction of media usage habits depends on theduration of the study 8, 9. This media usage survey defined in this paper willbe helpful for educational researchers with an in depth and detailed understandingof students’ and instructors´ technology usage in learning and otherdemographic factors that can influence the usage. This survey is designed toinvolve all the spectrums of media services with the below objectives:  ·        To evaluating social media use in termsof education that involves media use frequency, acceptance of both internal oruniversity-provided and external services, satisfaction, print media, socialmedia, electronic text, e-learning services, information technology,communication media and IT hardware.  ·        To determine the factors that influencesmedia use in learning. This involves cultural differences, sex, age, andacademic level as well as to identify the similarities among student mediausage.  ·        To create a knowledge base foruniversities to have a better understanding on the media usage of students andinstructors. ·        To assess the prospective in mediatrends so as to define media development strategies for universities.

  ·        To evaluate user satisfaction so as toevaluate the quality of the media being used by the students and instructors. BackgroundTechnology has changedthe way people think, react and interact. Internet is now an easy thing to beused with the help of mobile phones that costs a minimal amount for usage.Service providers also play a helpful role for the easy access of internet by extendingtheir support a step further with special offers. It is been analyzed that youthcreate a huge demand for the growth of social media. These communicationchannels are termed as Social Networking Sites (SNS).

Recently held reports claimthat youth spend around 10 hours per day using some form of technology over thesocially networked media (Rideout, Foehr & Robert 2010). Neelamalar & Chitra(2009), define that the members involved in social sites form groups called ascommunities to share their thoughts and opinions among themselves.  The research proposed in this paper shows the impactof social network on Indian youth. The results show that 95% who are members insocial networking sites tend to spend an hour to five hours every day in socialnetworking sites. It is also analyzed that 95% of the youth use socialnetworking sites as a platform to reconnect with lost friends, share knowledgeand maintaining existing relationships.Moreno & Kelb(2012) find that in case of adolescents social networking sites play animportant medium to establish communication with friends and self-expression. Theyfurther observed that 22% of teenagers log on very frequently to their favouritesocial networking sites for more than ten times in a day.

This study alsoconveyed a shocking observation about adolescents that they believe socialnetworking sites reference is true and accurate and this can influence theirown perception and actions (Moreno & Kelb: 2012).Sunitha and Narayan(2010) made a point that social networking has almost become a part of thedaily life experience or in other words as a daily habit for an increasingnumber of people. They made their study based on United States and othercountries around the world and stated that the rapid adoption of social networksites by the youth has raised some serious concerns to be answered. Ahn (2010) statesthat while teenagers are so much engaged with technology they fail to realizethe importance of schooling in their lives. No one can deny that youth usethese technologies only to communicate with the world but they also go beyondto implement them in learning and studying process as well (Lenhart et al.,2007b). We know that several learninginstitutions have blocked access to SNS in their premises but it is importantto understand that students use their own gadgets at home.

Therefore it is amust for both educators and parents to realize the fact that there is highusage of SNS by students and it is important to find the effects of these socialmedia sites on students’academic performance.Literaturereview: A.The Impact of WhatsApp in Teaching to Iranian EFL Learners at a Junior HighSchoolThis paper by AzizehChalak and Sanaz Jafari of Islamic Azad University, Isfahan, Iran present astudy based on the application of WhatsApp in the vocabulary learningimprovement of students who belong to the Iranian junior high school EFL.

Apre-test and post-test was performed and the results of the work proved thatWhatsApp had a significant role in vocabulary learning of the students.9B.Distance Learning and Facebook’s Usage: Students? AttitudeVilmant?Kumpikait?-Vali?nien? studied the role of Facebook in the study process. Thispaper states that Facebook should be implemented into the study process for theupcoming decades. It is been observed that this approach gets more attractive whenmerged with Skype. But the Lithuanian students are very critic in applyingFacebook in the study process since it is most commonly used during leisuretime and not prefer to use the same medium of social media as a pedagogicaltool 10.C.Learners’ Views on the Use of Social Networking Sites subjected to DistanceLearningThis work was proposedby At?c? and Özmen of the Firat University, Turkey.

In this study, they demonstratedthe application of learning management systems that was supported by socialnetworking sites in case of distance education and to understand the concern oflearners regarding these platforms. A semi-structured interview was conducted withopen-ended questions to collect data required for the case study. Contentanalysis was implemented in the analysis of data.

The results pointed that studentshave positive attitude towards social networking sites in distance educationand these applications have greatly improved the quality of communicationbetween the instructors and the students 11.D.Whether to use Social media in higher education in developing Countries.Mohamed A. Moustafa, AbuElnasr E. Sobaih , Parvis Ghandforoush and Mahmood Khan proposed the concept ofsocial media in higher education.

This paper speaks on global terms of using socialmedia in education by students. It helps to bridges a gap in knowledge withrespect to the value and the use of social media as a pedagogical tool forteaching and learning in higher education in developing countries. This paperidentified several barriers among the social media usage for higher education. Theresearch concludes stating that the faculty needs to clear these barriers so asto make social media an innovative and effective tool for teaching andlearning. The implications for the researchers and the policy makers arediscussed in the paper.C.

Effect of Social Media for academic collaborationPrevious literatureworks with respect to this subject has concluded saying social media has playeda very vital role in enhancing student’s academic performance. It was evaluatedthat the complex features of social media can actually help students to improvetheir learning skills by engaging with other people online 8. The research workdone by Wohn, Khan & Ellison 9 implemented the quantitative methodologyto examine the aspect of social media in increasing students’ academicperformance.

SOCIALMEDIA AN EDUCATION TOOLAs we know that most ofthe social networking sites have abundant data with it and also has thepotential to collect more data. In order to have social networking medium as aneducational tool and make it qualitative by implementing appropriate datamining techniques are to be used. Mining must be performed effectively so as torefine data and make it secure for creating a socio-academic environment. A classroomenvironment with learning communities can increase the overall social performance.Many researches show that these integrations in classroom are knowledgeable butfailed to be expressive.

The conventional teaching methods and the learningpedagogies have to undergo some refinement to make use of these socio educationaltools.Social media can enhancethe personality of an individual. Apart from this social media is also a greatcatalyst for a solid education. A click is enough and you get what you need toknow. It’s simple, easy and affordable too. A peer-to-peer sharing of knowledgeis made simple with social media. Time is no more a constraint and we can doanything even during your off hours. Student- teacher interaction is morefrequent with social media and also interactive without much hesitation.

Question and answer sessions are more realistic providing a quality andsuccessful education system. Instant feedback is possible from peer. Audio-visuallearning is feasible and creates an attractive learning environment. SocialNetworking SitesWith the increase oftechnology being used just to communicate with people- Social Networking has reachedits height and fame with sites like Facebook, MySpace, Friendster,Whatsapp,Bebo and Xanga (Coyle et al.

, 2008).Paul, Cochran and Baker(2012),in their research work study on the effect of online social networking onstudents’ academic performance and found that there is statistically a significantnegative relationship between time spent on online social networks and theiracademic performance.The study thatconcentrated on adolescents’use of SNS observed that their profiles contain allpersonal information in the social sites that can cause them a wide range ofsocial issues. According to Merten and Williams (2008), the university studentsare often obsessed with their Twitter page or Facebook profile.Trusov, Pauwels and Bucklin(2009) defined in their study that Internet is indeed an evolution oftechnology but it causes an unsafe space for teenagers in social networks.   2.2Social Networking Sites and Academic PerformanceAhn (2011) has well arguedin his paper on the debate surrounding youth, SNS and educational achievement.A conference paper held by Karpinski (2009) attracted much of attention as its findingsstate that college Facebook users have lower GPAs than students who are notusers of the site.

Karpinski has made severalhypotheses in the paper. For example, the hypotheses on Facebook users spendingtoo much time online and less time studying. But the author failed to rigorouslyexamine the counter hypotheses and remains a rather exploratory, basic attemptto understand the effect of SNS on learning (Khan, 2011).Shankar and Kuppuswamy(2010) argue in their research paper that social network websites grab more attentionof students and tend to divert them towards non-educational and inappropriate actionsthat include useless chatting, random searching and not doing their concernedjobs.

However, there are many research papers that found a positive associationbetween use of internet and SNS and academic performance of the student users.Sisson and Wiley (2006)argued that the earlier studies related to the subject have found that morethan 90% of college students use social networks. In a similar way Steinfield,Ellison and Lampe (2007) found that students use social networking websites foraround 30 minutes throughout the day as a part of their daily routine life.Benzie (2007) observedthat the Canadian government restricted employees from Facebook.com. In asimilar way Ellison and Boyd (2007) also stated that the U.S. Congress hasproposed legislation to ban youth from accessing social networking websites inschools and libraries.

Charlene Li et al.,(2007) analyzed and stated that students are more likely to use socialnetworking websites; with 47% of teenagers (12 to 17year olds) and 69% of youngadults (18 to 21year olds) and 20% of adults (18+) use social networking sites,and only 20% use them to contact other people.According to CharleneLi et al (2007) student activity on social networking sites were primarily tocommunicate with each other. But Khan (2012) in his research paper states thatthe most popular activities done by students and users on social networkingsites is to look at profiles of one another, search for someone or somecontact, or update one’s own profile, eavesdropping (sensing others activitieson social networking websites and analyzing their posts).

All the abovescholarly articles point to one thing, students spend much study time on thesesocial networking sites to just interact with others other than doing theirschool work.Ahn (2011) states thatresearch on social capital, SNS and psychological well-being paves anadditional link to student learning through the mechanism of academicengagement. The concept of engagement can be defined in emotional, behavioural andcognitive terms (Blumenfeld, Fredericks &Paris, 2004).Behavioural engagement relatesto participation in social, academic or extracurricular activities. Emotionalengagement defines the positive and negative feelings that students havetowards peers, teachers and the broader school community. Cognitive engagement showsthe idea that a student is ready or willing to expend the energy to comprehend difficultconcepts and learn new skills.

As stated earlier much of the researches basedon SNS suggest that as students more frequently interact with their network andcreate higher quality relationships with others.Education researcherswho are responsible to examine the social context of learning in areas likeextracurricular activity, out-of-school time and classroom climate also found aconnection between students’academic engagement, high-quality relationships  and achievement (Templeton and Eccles, 2002;Feldman & Matjasko, 2005; Dowson & Martin, 2009). A major hypothesisamong education researchers states that youth participation in extracurricularand school activities increases their social connectedness with teachers and alsowith peers (Eccles& Templeton, 2002; Feldman & Matjasko, 2005). Ahn(2011) further informs that this connectedness is related to increasedengagement with school and academics. MAINFOCUS OF THE ARTICLESince the mainobjective of this paper is to find an accurate and trustable representation ofthe perceptions and challenges in using social media as a pedagogical tool inuniversities. A descriptive research design was implemented to establish theresearch work as was it was the most suitable approach.

The research isdesigned with a survey research methodology that implements a questionnaire basedsurvey as the main research tool. The questionnaire includes demographicdetails, perceptions and challenges. The respondents were considered from thedepartment of Math, ELC, IT, Business and Engineer from the Ibra college ofTechnology. Both instructors and students were asked to answer thequestionnaire with random sampling approach. The completed questionnaires wereused to analyze the weight or the importance of each perception and challenge.

Thequestionnaires were distributed to students and lecturers as hard copies.  CONCLUSIONTo conclude, theresearch finding shows that the level of satisfaction among respondents inconcern with social media as a pedagogical tool is high and that social mediahas helped them to socially be strong. Around 70 per cent of the populationstate that social media has greatly helped them academically improve. Overall socialmedia usage is a good thing to go about in the education system.

The report also takesthe responsibility to highlight the challenges as well of using digitaltechnologies and for both students and educators. It also brings some importantquestions for universities where the educators might benefit better thanstudent’s use of social media in terms of educational objectives and learningexperiences. This survey helps in providing a tentative step to explore theonline activities of the university students and provide them with better comprehensiveinsights. The analysis shows high levels of online usage on a daily basis in particularwith social and entertainment category. It was also found that a majorproportion of the respondents use smart phones on a daily basis in the college.Social media sites like Instagram, Facebook and YouTube are the popularinternet platforms accessed frequently and widely.

The report did uncoverthe important aspects of having social media as a pedagogical tool foruniversity students. The survey did find a significant pattern in which socialmedia was being used for some academic works like performing collaborative workwith peers, using academic search tools for research purposes and downloadingreading materials. It is transparent that students and educators prefer asocial communication forum like instant messaging as an important tool fortheir daily college life. Both students and educators are digitally literateand trust on social media.

It is a must to mention that a significant populationof the survey do agree that they are concerned about balancing the time spenton college work with the time spent on devices.Our findings can act asan objective for future research regarding universities considering socialmedia a pedagogical tool for their education system and utilise social media asa major tool for education.