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Effects of Facebook

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Background of the Study

Facebook.com (Facebook), the most popular and widely used online social network website, has created frenzy among college students in recent years. Facebook emerged on February 4, 2004, when a 19-year-old sophomore Harvard student named Mark Zuckerberg founded the revolutionary site to connect Harvard University students (Grossman, 2010). Zuckerberg, at the time of Facebook‘s inception, had no idea Facebook would evolve into the social network giant it is today (“Existence of Facebook”, 2010). At present, college students have become very active in online social networking and are the largest percentage of Facebook users today (“Facebook Population”, 2012).

Online social network sites, like Facebook, are now an important outlet for communication and building social capital. Today‘s students communicate and network with each other through technology such as Facebook, in some cases more than face-to face communication (Heiberger & Harper, 2010). College students are able to freely express themselves and display thoughts and feelings on self-developed Facebook profile pages. The problem is that students appear to be using Facebook extremely and during times when they should be working on coursework. Although the extreme use of Facebook may be a problem in a variety of professions and K-12 school settings, a focus is especially necessary in higher education given the number of college students using the site.

In Nigeria, most of the college students use Facebook everyday. They have embraced it to the extent that it is already part of their lifestyle rather than just a hobby or a fun pastime. Academic success is the utmost issues to any student, with the pressure to belong to social networks specifically the Facebook. Now ,the universities in Nigeria are still looking for an effective way to limit the use of their college students of Facebook (Ogedebe, Emmanuel, Musa, 2012).

In Pakistan, Facebook is really much being used. Pakistani students like other students waste their time on Facebook activities. They prefer Facebook activities on their assignments and test preparation. This is a big problem that the Pakistan government is going through(Ruben,2011).

In the Philippines, the biggest worry probably every parents and educators are having on students are their low grades which a big percentage of it is caused by the usage of Facebook. It’s almost cliché that all students basically spend their whole day using Facebook. Students are amused by its facilities and how they communicate with friends and people they are shy or insecure to talk to in real life. They are too fascinated that they close one eye about the fake world they are living in through Facebook. The time spent on Facebook literally eats up their time which can be used to do many other advantageous things such as studying. The lack of concentration on studies is mainly caused by the huge amount of time and attention poured on Facebook. Students tend to get carried away and thus they have no time to finish up their assignment or even to revise.

Most students have got to log into their Facebook accounts almost all the time. College students are starting to be addicted of the use of Facebook because of its uses with exceptional functions, namely: 1.) It gives them the opportunity to get in touch with their loved ones, relatives, and friends. 2.) It helps them get to know the latest news and issues,3.)They could participate in online discussions and many others; not knowing that it already affects their academic performance. The government is having a hard time to cope up with this dilemma of addiction to Facebook by the students. (“The Effects of Facebook Towards College Students“, 2010)

In Davao City, Facebook is still on top with regards to the usage of the students. In fact, surveys made by some researchers interpret that students give more time on using Facebook than giving time in making their assigned homework that reflect to a low performance in academic matters (Sobbashini,2011). Students forget about their other duties and start giving all the time in pursuing, what will be the next on Facebook by them or their friends. This is really not good for students as they must show more concern to their prior duties, their family and relatives. Access of everything is bad, while using Facebook students should keep in mind the time limit and other works and responsibilities which hold more importance to their life than using Facebook. (Ilmkidunya, 2012)

It is in the perspective that the researchers were challenged to conduct a study about the impact of Facebook among the selected sophomore students with regards to their academic performance in Jose Maria College, Catitipan, Davao City.

Statement of the Problem

The study is aimed at finding out the impact of Facebook on the academic performance among the selected sophomore college students during the school year 2012-2013. Further, this study sought for the answers of the following questions: 1. Is there any significant relationship of Facebook’s impact on the academic performance among the selected sophomore college students? Is there any significant effect of Facebook on the academic performance among the selected sophomore college students? 2. What is the contribution of Facebook on the academic performance among the selected sophomore college students? Hypothesis

This study is to make and verify the following null hypothesis: Hypothesis 1. There is no significant relationship of Facebook’s impact on the academic performance among the selected sophomore college students.

Hypothesis 2.There is no significant effect of Facebook on the academic performance among the selected sophomore college students. Hypothesis 3.Facebook has no contribution on the academic performance among selected sophomore college students.

Review of Related Literature

This section contains reading related to the study which were taken from books, journals, internet sources and studies about the impact of Facebook to the students, specifically college students and the academic performance of college students.

Social networking sites, most notably Facebook have become so popular today that it has become the leading words on the lips of the teenagers, youngsters and also elders. This was introduced in 2004 and in its 8 years it has crossed more than 750 million users at present time. Facebook is a social website which is used to remain connected to other people and at the same time, they can see their all friends and family members’ activities and also can find their lost friends here. This social networking site has brought out, both positive and negative edges. Let’s start to cite its positive edges. First, it gives the facility to chat with all those in their contacts and they can see their activities and also pass comments on them. Second, it provides the facility to search anyone, present in any part of the country.

They can chat with and come to know about their relatives and friends living far away and they will feel very close to them. Hundreds of millions of people use Facebook to enhance their lives in a part time activity. On the other side, Facebook and especially internet are the socially connecting ways and sometimes it makes so lonely that the students do not find time for their family members even. For Facebook users, family doesn’t come first, but Facebook does. For them their online friends are more important than their family members. They get so much into it and forget about other responsibilities and physical activities. This is where the negative side of Facebook appears. Facebook is quite addictive, once they get started they will find their self-checking it every day and doing so make them interested in using it and then they start checking their friends’ s and messages and their activities and most addictive thing on Facebook is playing games which are available there. Using Facebook makes students idol, they just stick around their desktops and keep using Facebook.

All the activities on Facebook take long time and user get deep down in it and forget about other things. Facebook addiction is not limited only to the adults and youths even children are so much in number who uses Facebook. It has so many side effects that our students get, as they may don’t know. One of the negative effects is that a teenage user starts losing interest in her surroundings. She would be addicted to Facebook and the only thing she would be concerned about will be their “own” world, which is inside Facebook. Another negative effect is that their real-world social interaction will start diminishing. There is no doubt about that they are going to have hundreds of friends on Facebook, but with how many of them would they be interacting out in the real world. As a human being, they are a social creatures and they naturally require real-world social interaction. Another negative thing is that when they are going to spend maximum of their time on the internet, they are going to decrease their communication and social skills. Using Facebook means that they are allowing other users to search them easily and their friends tag and bag them like an objects. The personal data becomes public on this social site, threatening the privacy.

Though it has some privacy measures but those are not enough and those users who exactly don’t know how to control their privacy. This is not reasonable, unless they want to be contacted by hundredths of people that don’t know them. They make friends and chat with other Facebook users. It is a common trend among Facebook users that they make fake accounts and trap others. It also increases the chances of online conflict. Facebook is populated with immature individuals who create bizarre statuses, uploaded awkward images and carry out absurd actions and this can lead to conflicts between people. Using Facebook for log time causes low grades in studies as students give more time and attention to their Facebook. Some students think that using Facebook will not affect their studies and they came to know about the reality when they get their results. Most of the times students keep using Facebook and forget to study even they don’t care about their lunch and dinner. This gives a negative impact on their health and on their studies.

There is a very high chance that excessive use of Facebook leads to the users becoming obese. They would be sitting most of the time in front of the computer, eating snacks and without any physical activities and eventually, over a period of time they are going to accumulate all the extra pounds. It is also going to minimize their study time. Rather than spending their time in Facebook, they would better start browsing some educational sites that relate to their school course. Given these negative effects of Facebook it is up to the people to decide the degree to which they want this social networking site to enter into their life. Getting addicted to Facebook is certainly going to increase problems in life, but if they can restrict or avoid the use of this non-productive aspect of life, they are going to stay away from troubles. In addition, according to research’s, Facebook has been considered a great cause in breakups among many relations (Ruben,2011).

Demonize it, or extol its admissions and alumni-network virtues; the use of Facebook in every school is likely to elicit strong opinions. One thing is for certain, the use of Facebook repeatedly comes up in discussions about internet safety, age-appropriate exposure, and student online behavior. Though many schools have different policies for using or accessing Facebook, they share many of the same concerns. (Fodeman, Monroe, 2009). Theoretical and Conceptual Framework

Network is made up of individuals or organizations called “nodes”, which are connected by one or more specific types of interdependency such as friendship, kinship and many others.

It is important to understand the underlying psychology of human group behavior. Armed with this knowledge, we can understand better the qualitative results of this empirical study with regards on the impact of social networking sites, specifically Facebook, among the sophomore college students.


Social Comparison Theory was initially proposed by a social psychologist Leon Festinger in 1954. This theory is centered on the belief that there is a drive within individuals to gain accurate self-evaluations. It explains how individuals evaluate their own opinions and abilities by comparing themselves to others in order to reduce uncertainty in these domains, and learn how to define the self. Following the initial theory, research began to focus on social comparison as a way of self-enhancement (Gruder, 1971; Wills, 1981), introducing the concepts of downward and upward comparisons and expanding the motivations of social comparisons (Schachter, 1959).

* Downward social comparison is a defensive tendency that people use as a means of self-evaluation. These individuals will look to another individual or comparison group who are considered to be worse off in order to detach themselves from perceived similarities and to make themselves feel better about their self or personal situation. * In an upward social comparison, people want to believe themselves to be part of the elite or superior, and make comparisons showing the similarities in themselves and the comparison group (Suls, Martin, Wheeler, 2002). Taylor and Lobel (1989) suggested upward comparisons provide inspiration to improve. For example, in Facebook, a user can download online personal quizzes that allows him or her to compare results with other user.

Social Learning Theory is a viewpoint that states that people learn within a social environment. It is facilitated through concepts such as modeling and observational learning. People, especially children, learn from the environment and seek acceptance from society by learning through influential models. This theory is a viewpoint that states that social behavior (any type of behavior that we display socially) is learned primarily by observing and imitating the actions of others. The social behavior is also influenced by being rewarded and/or punished for these actions. It was derived in an attempt by Robert Sears and other scholars to merge psychoanalytic and stimulus-response learning theory into an inclusive explanation of human behavior. For example, in Facebook, a user is being notified on the latest updates and status of each of his or her network of friends. Through these observations, new learning and discoveries are being acquired.

Peer Pressure Theory is a viewpoint that states the influence exerted by a peer group or an individual, encouraging other individuals to change their attitudes, values, or behaviors in order to conform to group norms. A person affected by peer pressure may or may not want to belong to these groups. They may also recognize dissociative groups with which they would not wish to associate, and thus they behave adversely concerning that group’s behaviors. Peer pressure is most commonly associated with youth, in part because most youth spend large amounts of time in schools and other fixed groups that they do not choose and are seen as lacking the maturity to handle pressure from friends.

Also, young people are more willing to behave negatively towards those who are not members of their own peer groups. It can also have positive effects when people are pressured toward positive behavior, such as volunteering for charity or excelling in academics or athletics, by their peers. This is most commonly seen in youths who are active in sports or other extracurricular activities where conformity with one’s peer group is strongest (“Definition of Peer Pressure Theory”, n.d.). For example, In Facebook, a user can write a note or blog, and has the option whether to comment on and/or like a certain post. This mechanism encourages peer pressure online.

Social Judgment Theory. It is a persuasion theory proposed by Carolyn Sherif, Muzafer Sherif, and Carl Hovland. According to Sherif, Social Judgment Theory is the perception and evaluation of an idea by comparing it with current attitudes. We do this theory in our heads by weighing every new idea by comparing it with our present point of view. Basically, we hear a message and immediately judge where it should be placed on the attitude scale in our own minds. SJT is the subconscious sorting out of ideas that occurs at the instant of perception. For example, in Facebook, a user can be a victim of false judgment and harsh statements made by mischievous and insecure friends and contacts. There should be a control for ‘below-the-belt’ comments to maintain the ethical standards and values of all Facebook users.


Student motivation has long been considered an important factor in the determination of academic performance. The nature and extent of the link between motivation and performance has been explored on many fronts. Here are the following theories that support about the academic performance of the sophomore college students: Expectancy Theory. One perspective has been to use expectancy theory, as developed by Vroom (1964). According to this theory, motivation to act is a combination of the perceived attractiveness of future outcomes and the likelihood one’s actions will lead to these outcomes. Thus, motivating students to put forth academic effort depends on students’ perceptions of the benefit of academic performance and their belief that exerting effort will actually lead to higher performance.

Needs Theory. A second way in which student motivation and performance have been viewed is through the analysis of the intrinsic individual needs of students. Needs theory posits that individual motivated behavior is substantially driven by the strength of various intrinsic need (i.e., achievement, affiliation, autonomy, and dominance). This needs theory, as developed by McClelland, Atkinson, Clark and Lowell (1953); Atkinson (1958); and Sterrs and Braunstein (1976) and as applied to students, suggests that students’ motivation to exert effort in the quest to attain academic success is driven by their relative need levels – particularly their need to achieve. Atkinson’s Theory of Achievement Motivation. Atkinson and Feather (1966) theorized that orientation results from two separate motives: to achieve success, and to avoid failure.

The motive to achieve success is determined by three things: (1) the need to succeed or need achievement [nAch]; (2) the person’s estimate of the likelihood of success in performing the particular task; and (3) the incentive for success-that is, how much the person wants to succeed in that particular task. The motive to avoid failure is determined by three similar considerations: (1) the need to avoid failure which, like the need to achieve success, varies among individuals; (2) the person’s estimate of the likelihood of failure at the particular task; and (3) the incentive value of failure at that task, that is, how unpleasant it would be to fail. The relative sire of the motives to succeed and to avoid failure determine the level of task difficulty people will prefer.

When the motive to succeed is stronger, as it is for people who have a high need to achieve, the preferred tasks are those intermediate in difficulty, in which the likelihood of success is reasonable and the pride in accomplishment fairly high, When the motive to avoid failure is dominant, however people prefer either very simple tasks in which the probability of failure is low or very difficult tasks in which the shame in failing is low. As we have already seen, high and low achievers have shown this pattern of preferences in risk taking studies. Atkinson has recently expanded this theory to take account of changes in achievement behavior over time (Atkinson & Birch, 1970; Atkinson, 1977). One such change is that people progressively choose more arid more difficult tasks (Kuhl, Blankenship, 1979).

Independent Variable Dependent Variable Facebook
Academic Performance of the Selected Sophomore College Students Academic Performance of the Selected Sophomore College Students


Figure 1.Conceptual Framework Showing the Variables
Presented in figure 1 is the conceptual framework showing the variables. The independent variable of this study is the impact of Facebook. The dependent variable is the academic performance of the selected sophomore college students.

Significance of the Study
The primary purpose of the study is to investigate whether or not the academic performance of the sophomore college students is greatly affected by the social networking site named Facebook. Specifically, the findings of the study will hopefully benefit the following: Students. The proposed study help the students to realize the great effect of Facebook on their academic performance if use adversely and excessively. As we all know, too much use of something is not good. Remember the term moderation. Any excess or shortfall could be detrimental but reasonable use is more beneficial.

Educators. The proposed study serves as their guide on how to handle this kind of situation. It also gives assistance in applying remedy in the dilemma that is being involved by their students with regards to the extreme use of Facebook in which the time for studying is diverted to the updating of status in Facebook.

Guardians. The proposed study unveils the truth and it gives awareness to the guardians of the children about the positive and negative effects of Facebook on the academic performance of their children. The guardians may realized the value of their personal attachment to their young ones. They can also think about formulating an effective and efficient way of guiding their children.

Definition of Terms
In order to understand clearly the subject matter, we define the following key concepts of social networking sites, Facebook and academic performance, as they are essential to fully comprehend the issue in focus.

Social Networking Site. This is a social network services that focus on building online communities of people who share interests or activities, or who are interested in exploring the interests and activities of others.

Facebook. It is a social networking service launched in February 2004, owned and operated by Facebook, Inc. as of September 2012, Facebook has over one billion active users, more than half of whom use Facebook on a mobile device. Users must register before using the site, after which they may create a personal profile, add other users as friends, and exchange messages, including automatic notifications when they update their profile. Additionally, users may join common-interest user groups, organized by workplace, school or college, or other characteristics, and categorize their friends into lists such as “People From Work” or “Close Friends”.

Facebook was founded by Mark Zuckerberg with his college roommates and fellow Harvard University students Eduardo Saverin,Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes.[8] The website’s membership was initially limited by the founders to Harvard students, but was expanded to other colleges in the Boston area, the Ivy League, and Stanford University. It gradually added support for students at various other universities before opening to high school students, and eventually to anyone aged 13 and over. Facebook now allows any users who declare themselves to be at least 13 years old to become registered users of the site.

Academic Performance. It refers to how students deal with their studies and how they cope with or accomplish different tasks given to them by their teachers.

National Career Assessment Examination (NCAE). It is a test taken by high school students in the Philippines that determines their strengths in different career fields.

College Admission Test . It is the process through which students enter tertiary education at colleges. Systems vary widely from country to country, and sometimes from institution to institution. In many countries, prospective university students apply for admission during their last year of high school or community college. In some countries, there are independent organizations or government agencies to centralize the administration of standardized admission exams and the processing of applications.

IBM Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS )Statistics. It is a software package used for statistical analysis in social science. It was released in its first version in 1968 after being developed by Norman H. Nie, Dale H. Bent and C. Hadlai Hull.

Research Design

The present study will use a non-experimental quantitative survey research design to uncover the direct and moderating relationship between time spent on Facebook and the traditional predictors of academic success (i.e. high school GPA, CAT score or NCAE score) and the outcome variable of college cumulative GPA. Also, it will compare several independent variables’ effect on academic performance through multiple regression analysis.

Research Instrument

Descriptive statistics is another statistical technique that will be used in this research project to determine the mean, maximum value, minimum value, and standard deviation for all the demographic variables. The demographic variables help describe and characterize the data and findings. The study is designed to bring attention and awareness of the effects of Facebook use on academic performance.

Quantitative research will be used because it will allow the investigator to study relationships between variables and generalize real-world settings (Muijs, 2004). Quantitative research can explain the phenomena through the collection of numerical data, which is then will be analyzed using statistics (Muijs, 2004). Non-experimental research can describe existing phenomena without changing some condition to affect the subjects‘ responses. With survey research the investigator can select a group of respondents, collect data, and ultimately analyze the data to answer the research question(s). The investigator can collect quantitative data from a large sample using survey methodology.

Survey research is an appropriate investigation tool for making generalized inferences about a large group of people based on data drawn from a smaller number of individuals from that group. The survey data that will be collected will be transformed into numerical data so the researcher could look at the statistical relationships.

Population and Sample

The population for the present study will be one hundred sophomore college students enrolled in the first semester in Jose Maria College at large. The sampling method will be convenience sampling involving participants who are accessible, willing to participate in a research study, and from a naturally formed group (e.g. a classroom) (Creswell, 2009).

Research Participants

There will be one hundred (100) sophomore students enrolled in Jose Maria College taking different courses who will participate in the survey. Fifty (50) students will be under the control group and the other half will be under the experimental group. In the control group, it consists of those sophomore students who are rarely using Facebook or those who do not use Facebook while in the experimental group, these are composed of those sophomore students who always use Facebook everyday in order to socialize with other people in different places, either local or international, to update their statuses and even to play games like Farmville, Cityville and many to mention. Both groups will be given a survey questionnaire at the same time and the same place. They are already aware about the study and agree to participate by answering.

Research Procedure

The researchers observe the following procedure in gathering of data: 1. Seek Approval from the Administration. The researchers will ask permission to the administration of the school where the study will be conducted. 2. Preparation of the Questionnaires for the Survey. Researchers start to make its survey form in order to collect and to gather the information that will be needed for the interpretation of results.

3. Validation of Survey Questionnaires. After making the survey form, it must be first submitted to the administration for some checking, revising, editing and the approval of the administration about the survey that is being made by the researchers in order to have a qualitative and quantitative data. 4. Conduct of Survey. The survey form will be given to the participants of the said study that will help to answer the questions and satisfy the curiosity of the researchers who will conduct the research. 5. Interpret the Results. After collecting and gathering data, this will undergo some statistical analysis in order to get a quality interpretation with the survey that is being done.

Figure 2. Steps to be followed in gathering data

Statistical Analysis

The sample data will be converted into numerical form and will provide nominal, ordinal, and interval scale data. The researcher used SPSS to perform the statistical analysis. The demographic information will be presented in both numerical and descriptive formats. Basic frequency analyses will be conducted using demographic information and survey measures.

The research questions will be analyzed using multiple regression analysis, which analyzes the degree to which a dependent variable (academic performance) will relate to the different independent variables (Muijs, 2004). Multiple regression also estimates the relative impact of the independent variables on the dependent variable which in this case is the academic performance and Facebook, the independent variable. Multiple regression is a statistical technique that will allow the researcher to make predictions base on other variables. This type of research looks for relationships between variables.

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