USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA IN HIGHER EDUCATION
Of all the changes and transformations that the whole world is experiencing at a great pace, the most important ones are the advances in communication tools and the things that these developments offer us. Especially computers and the internet affect all aspects of social structure. In the twenty-first century that is named as the age of information and technology, communication technologies, in particular through the development of web 2.0 technology, have changed the traditional one-way structure of the internet. With this new structure, the internet has become a more interactive platform where additions and contributions can made to the content. Now users can produce content and share large amounts of data easily on social media in almost every area. Social media continually improves web technologies and the number of users increases every day. It is becoming a more popular medium day after day.
This new medium in question has created a new cultural environment. In this cultural structure educational use of the social media has also become possible. People use social media significantly in terms of their professional development as well.
The primary aim of this research is to determine university students’ habits of using social media. Secondary objective is to determine social media usage rates in the educational process. To achieve these goals, a questionnaire consisting of 60 questions was used.
In this study, 500 students from Selcuk University were surveyed through simple random sampling method. Survey was conducted by face to face interviews. Ideas of university students about the internet and social media usage rates, social media purposes, and their impact on students' motivation to study and especially benefit levels of social media in terms of education have been identified.
Accordingly, it was found out that social media is widely used by students, the time allotted for social media is high, and social media is used as a medium especially for language learning. Beside being a social communication tool, social media is seen as a learning tool. Educational uses such as sharing assignments, lecture notes, course-related documents with friends, and contacting lecturers in the friends list to communicate about the courses were determined. Similarly, it was found out that lecturers use social media for educational purposes by sharing course-related documents and information with students.