Social Media and Literacy

Introduction

The competent handling with the content published on the social platforms and handling with the genre social media is considered as the social media literacy. Social media can impact the child development and literacy skills of children. It was found that social media does not have any useful benefit for toddlers and teens literacy skills. Various social networking sites, as well as blogs, helps the students to develop their positive attitude towards writing and to become more confident in their writing abilities. Basically, social media is a website that allows social interaction among different types of people. It includes social networking sites such as Myspace, Facebook and Twitter, virtual worlds such as Sims, gaming sites and video sites such as blogs and YouTube.

Social media has a negative impact on the literacy skills of children. It declines the writing skills of children because of the excessive usage of shortcuts and online chatting. Social media also have some positive impact on the literacy skills of children of all ages because it provides the information to children about several new aspects that they do not know previously. The social media also provides the educational learning programs that help the students in learning. It benefits the toddler’s literacy skills of social media.

For this study, I have examined the number of variables such as the frequency of using the social media by students and percentage of a number of students that impact negatively from using the social networking sites. The main question that we research in this paper is “Does the excessive use of various social media sites affect children literacy negatively”?

The social media is beneficial and useful for enhancing the literacy skills of children if they are using the various sites of social media effectively and efficiently such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube etc. and make a proper and correct use of it. It is important to make the efficient use of the social media sites as it impacts the literacy skills and writing skills of an individual. The children should use social media sites for a limited time such as 2-3 hours in a day and for the correct purpose i.e. to take essential information.

 

Methodology

There are different methods are used to conduct the research. A large amount of data is collected in order to understand the concept easily and in a better way. With the help of the mixed method approach such as the primary and secondary method of collecting data, this research determines the relationship between the literacy skills in children and social media. It helps in determining the fact that use of the various social media sites by children negatively impact the literacy skills of the children or not.

In the qualitative analytical method which is also known as the primary method, we collect data related to our research topic. In this research, some secondary data is also used in order to support all of our findings. As the secondary data, journal articles, websites, the information from the newspaper, magazines and other materials and sources are used. We will also conduct the interviews in which we will collect the information from people and their perspectives that whether excessive use of social media can impact the literacy skills of their child or not. We also collect the data from schools and taking the interviews of teachers at a local school nearby our university and their opinions regarding the research area. It helps in collecting useful information related to research.

In the secondary data, we will collect a variety of data incorporated with the longitudinal cohort examination. In this, we have examined the 10,000 children that are studying in different school and in different classes. It helps in determining the correct results because these children are using social media sites for different timing. Some are using social media sites extensively and some are using it for only a limited time. We will collect this data with the total amount of time spent by the children in the social media sites and their performance in the class and their literacy skills. This study is key in examining the research topic and it is the major part that helps in drawing the results as well as the conclusion of the research. The qualitative research can help in providing critical information that examines and re-examines the critical nuanced data. This approach provides the correct and efficient results on which the research is conducted.

The secondary data helps in creating the purposeful sampling pool and accurate results which allows the research to target some specific group. Using the different age group people and the data of several students helps in drawing accurate results and it allows in a better understanding of a specific group. In the methodology, we use both qualitative and quantitative methodology for sampling selection and seeking to learn and understand the central phenomenon of a research article. It helps in understanding the effect of social media sites in the literacy skills of children of different age. There are some limitations of the research that will allow conducting the future investigation on this research topic. The limitation is that the data is collected about the children were belong to different class and age and the children that belong to higher class uses social media sites more as compared to children that study in lower class. It can provide the wrong results in our research area. It also created several conflicts in the research area.

Findings

From the collected data, we get some critical information about the social media negative impact on children. The below graph indicated that there are 81% of teenagers that expose to the inappropriate content on social media through their cell phone or the internet. It impacts their literacy skills and they do not concentrate on their studies. The other negative impact of using the social networking sites by the teenagers is that they it takes away to them from face-to-face interactions with their family or friends due to which they are not able to share their problems with their close once. It creates distance between parents and their children. It also shows that the social media sites impact the written skills of the students and most of the times, they prefer to use the short forms in their writing.

Figure 1: Negative Impact of Social Media on Teens (Orem, 2017)

Figure 2: Effect of Digital Technologies on Writing (PURCELL, 2014)

The above graph shows that 50% people think that digital technologies such as social media sites make it easier to shape or improve the writing of students and also helps them in developing their critical thinking on various topics. On the other hand, there are 18% of the people that think that it makes it more difficult in improving the student writing and making it worst and 31% people do not think that there is any impact of social media on literacy of students.

The above graph shows that the greater number of males using the social media for information seeking. It indicated that male is using social networking sites more as compared to females in an academic context but in an everyday context, the number of females is greater as compared to males.

Figure 3: Frequency of using social media for information seeking, by context and sex (Kim, 2014)

 

Analysis

For data analysis, two-way ANOVAs were used in order to test both positive as well as negative effects of social networking sites on the frequency of literacy skills of an individual and the evaluation of information from social media. All the analysis was done by using SPSS. Through the data analysis of collected data and findings and the results of surveys with students and teachers, this study examines the impact of social networking sites on young students and teenagers in their literacy.

In this section, we also analyzed all the collected data in order to drive the relationship between social media and literacy skills in children. This data helps in determining that whether the use of social networking sites has a positive or negative impact on the literacy skills of children. The analysis of the various websites and research paper helps in determining that the if the children use the social media sites more in their early stage then it the student is not able to apply their critical thinking in different areas and restricts their thinking.

 

Recommendations

The social networking sites are effective in today era in student’s education but there are several concerns associated with it. The young generation can connect with all over the world using this platform and can know about new people and their culture and language. There are also several negative impacts of these sites on the young generation, especially in their literacy skills. the excessive use of these sites can hamper their shiny future.

Several numbers of teenager’s access social media which are not intended to it due to which they are being exposed to the risk of harm. The first recommendation that I want to give is that the younger should not spend so much time of these social media sites as it is bad for persons who are an early stage of their life because it is important to time for their future. It can hamper their study and literacy skills.

The other recommendation is that these social networking sites are not so much secure. So, the children should use these sites carefully and does not disclose more about themselves. I also want to recommend to the students that they should join those group in the social networking sites that help them in increasing their knowledge on various topics and where they can easily share their point of view and opinions with other people freely and can make a good decision.

The teenagers can enhance their technological knowledge from these social networking sites as there are some groups and pages in social media where people share some new technologies in these pages as well as groups. So, I want to recommend to younger to add them to these social groups about newer invention and newest technology and the information that help them in improving their literacy skills and their general knowledge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

Alper, M. (2011). Developmentally appropriate New Media Literacies: Supporting cultural competencies and social skills in early childhood education. Journal of Early Childhood Literacy13(2), 175-196. doi:10.1177/1468798411430101

Bigelow, M., Vanek, J., King, K., & Abdi, N. (2017). Literacy as social (media) practice: Refugee youth and native language literacy at school. International Journal of Intercultural Relations60, 183-197. doi: 10.1016/j.ijintrel.2017.04.002

Giustini, D. (2015). An online course on social media for student librarians: teaching the information skills and literacies of social media. Information Literacy Beyond Library 2.0, 151-162. doi:10.29085/9781856048804.015

Kim, K. S., & Sin, S. J. (2015, December 24). Use of social media in different contexts of information seeking: effects of sex and problem-solving style. Retrieved from http://www.informationr.net/ir/20-1/isic2/isic24.html#.XAeYh9sza1s

Mattock, L. K. (2015). Teaching Visual and Media Literacy Skills Through Media Production Technology. Essentials of Teaching and Integrating Visual and Media Literacy, 237-249. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-05837-5_12

Orem, D. (2017). NAIS – How Does Technology Affect Teen Health and Well-Being? Retrieved from https://www.nais.org/learn/independent-ideas/september-2017/how-does-technology-affect-teen-health-and-well-being/

PURCELL, K. (2014, February 12). The Impact of Digital Tools on Student Writing and How Writing is Taught in Schools. Retrieved from http://www.pewinternet.org/2013/07/16/the-impact-of-digital-tools-on-student-writing-and-how-writing-is-taught-in-schools/