Effects of Social Media on Students’ Learning and Social Life

Istanbul, Turkey - September 18, 2015: Apple Iphone 6 screen with social media applications of Whatsapp, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Periscope while a male finger is about to touch on Facebook app.

Social media plays a major role in young people’s lives. It has become the main platform for social connections, communication, news delivery, and entertainment. However, social networks come with good and bad, depending on your use. It’s important to understand both sides of the coin and stay cautious and aware of all the benefits and dangers. So, here are the main effects of social media on students’ learning and social life. 

Global Awareness

First of all, social media has brought the world and people in it closer to each other. Such platforms erase borders and cultural differences, uniting people on big global issues, diverse perspectives, and other agendas. Now, we feel much closer and know more about people from different countries than ever. Such global awareness helps young people foster a broader understanding of the world and promotes empathy, inclusion, and education about world issues. 

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Distractions

Social media can also be a powerful source of distractions. Young people get easily addicted to easy entertainment options and a sense of reward and satisfaction online. It can drastically disrupt the learning process, decrease students’ ability to focus, and affect their academic performance. 

In addition, active use of social media often leads to developing FOMO (fear of missing out). This feeling urges students to check their feeds more often than necessary out of anxiety to stay out of current trends, news, or experiences. FOMO can be distracting as it is due to an increased sense of pressure and stress, which prevent productive learning.

Spread of misinformation

Social media platforms often contain inaccurate or false information. Young generations often fall victim to false narratives. They are often gullible and naive about the world and the information they receive about it. Social media can also create informational bubbles, reducing users’ exposure to diverse information. Thus, students on social media are not critical consumers of information, which affects their perception of the world, critical thinking, and analytical abilities. 

Connection and communication

Social media was designed for communication and connection purposes. To this day, such platforms perfectly fulfill these roles. They allow students to stay in touch with their families and friends regardless of distance, time difference, etc. They have the ability to strengthen relationships and facilitate dialogues.

Social media also provides an opportunity to expand social networks and make new, valuable connections online. Such communication can lead to new friendships, relationships, and a sense of community online. 

Creativity

Social networking platforms are also a great place to practice and execute creative work. Students often use social media as an outlet for creativity and self-expression. There, students can share art, information about hobbies, and other talents. They can also build communities around their creative work and find recognition, endorsement, and encouragement. 

Mental health 

Social media is one of the leading causes of mental health crises among the youth. Such platforms often create an unhealthy and traumatizing environment for young minds. They foster social comparison and open ways for cyberbullying and harassment. As a result, young people tend to curate their lives, suffer from low self-esteem, and experience social pressure and negative interactions with other users. You can learn more about the mental health dangers of social media by ordering a psychology research paper at proessays.net