Why students use social networks for education: Extension of UTAUT2

WHY STUDENTS USE SOCIAL NETWORKS FOR EDUCATION: EXTENSION OF UTAUT2

Ala’a salameh Abu Gharrah , Ali Aljaafreh

Department of Management Information Systems, Business school, Mutah University (Jordan)

Received August 2020

Accepted October 2020

Abstract

Social networks sites have a considerable impact on all our life aspects, especially the educational sector.  This study aims at identifying the factors affecting students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in Jordanian universities. The proposed model consists of factors of the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology UTAUT2 theory (Effort expectancy, Performance expectancy, Social influence, Facilitating condition, Habit, Hedonic motivation) which is extended by adding two external factors (lecturer support, and student-related factors) as an extension. The study was conducted in (6) Jordanian universities, where (411) questionnaires were returned from the study sample with (380) responses are acceptable for data analysis (a response rate of 93%) from the total questionnaires that were distributed online. The statistical package for social sciences (SPSS 23.0) was used to determine the factors affecting the students’ actual use of s for educational purposes. Results: The results showed that (Performance expectancy, Social influence, Effort expectancy, Habit, lecturer support, and student-related factors) have a positive impact on the actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in Jordanian universities, while the factors (Facilitating condition and Hedonic motivation) don’t support their hypotheses). Based on the results, the researcher introduced a number of recommendations for the decision makers in the higher education that could be positively reflected on increasing the adoption of SNS for educational process in public Jordanian Universities.

 

Keywords – Social Networks Sites (SNS), UTAUT2, Educational purposes, Jordanian universities.

To cite this article:

Gharrah, A.S.A., & Aljaafreh, A. (2021). Why students use social networks for education: Extension of UTAUT2. Journal of Technology and Science Education, 11(1), 53-66. https://doi.org/10.3926/jotse.1081

 

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    1. 1. Introduction

Due to the rapid development in information technology, companies were affected and their way of doing business changed. The tools and capabilities provided by information technology also increased the efficiency and perceived advantages by users. The educational sector is one of several other sectors that utilized and were affected by information technology with regard to providing the educational process for learners (students). For instance, E-learning systems are widely used in educational sector which, in turn, made the learning process more flexible and easier. Moreover, many universities have employed IT through creating their own electronic portals and online programs that are totally taught electronically.

Recently, the interactive and cooperative environment provided by the web 2 technology has facilitated the communication process between teachers and students. This environment takes into consideration the dissemination of these services via social networking, such as (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, etc..) through which a network of friends is constructed from those who share similar interests by means of blogs and virtual classrooms as well as the potential of live transmission of events (Tan, Shao & Yu 2014, Balakrishnan 2017). Social media sites are considered as the mostly used services in web 2, where they allow users to share interests, meet, cooperate and communicate with others (Seely-Brown & Adler, 2008). Many studies emphasized the importance of using social networking in an educational environment (Kaplan & Haenlein, 2012; Hutter, Hautz, Dennhardt & Füller, 2013). For example, Facebook and Twitter can be used in motivating elaborated discussions about certain topics in the classroom. Pinterest can also be used on the web in order to share the educational resources, where the users can make advantage of a number of digital learning resources, such as YouTube videos, virtual reality and graphical drawings in order to increase the content of knowledge and enhance the appreciation for a variety of perspectives and motivations.

Social networking refers to “a web service(s) that allow individuals to construct a public or semi-public profile within a certain system with definite boundaries, create a list of other participants in the system with whom they share a connection, view and explore their own list of connections as well as those made by others in the system”(Boyd & Ellison, 2007).

The current study aims addressing a two-sided gap in the topic under study. The first gap is an empirical one, which relates to the lack of studies that address the factors influencing students’ Actual Usage of Social Networks Sites for Educational purposes. Even though there are so many studies addressing the students’ motivation for the academic usage of social networks, few studies adopt a standardized model. However, this case doesn’t apply to Jordan (Bonilla Polo & Osman, 2017). The second gap relates to the theoretical domain. Therefore, the current study represents a new research model which would add to the second version of the standardized theory for acceptance and technology usage (UTAUT2) in order to explore and understand the factors influencing students’ Actual Usage of Social Networks Sites for Educational purposes in the Jordanian universities. This extension represents lecturer support (Bonilla Polo & Osman, 2017) and factors relating to students (Al-Zedjali, Al-Harrasi & Al-Badi, 2014).

Based on the above discussion, the study poses the following main research question:

  • What are the factors influencing students’ Actual Usage of Social Networks Sites for Educational purposes in the Jordanian universities? 

2. Literature Review

2.1. Social Networks Sites in Education

The literature review showed that there are several studies that linked SNs with education. (Alhazmi, Rahman & Zafar, H 2014; Tan et al. 2014; Aburagaga, Agoyi & Elgedawy, 2020; John & Govender, 2020; Nikolopoulou, Gialamas & Lavidas, 2020). The importance of SNs in education lies in improving communication skills, enhancing social commitment and participation, promoting learning activity, creativity, problem-solving and cooperation, fostering program exchange and conferences as well as designing and publishing studies (Gharrah, Aljaafreh & Al-Ma’aitah, 2019). In addition, SNs play a vital role in increasing the students’ academic attainment. Thus, the student can send and share information, keep in touch with the current events and news, discuss topics and concepts and cooperate with others with regard to doing homework or academic projects. Also, SNs provide comfortable and rapid means for exchanging knowledge as well as cooperation between students (Erzurum & Tiryakioglu, 2011; Eid & Al‑Jabri, 2016). Sabino (2010) suggested that electronic education represents a closed educational environment, where the information flows in one direction, from the teacher to the student, turning the student into an inactive element in the educational process. The study emphasized that providing the characteristics of SNs side by side with electronic education is an important factor in order to make the educational environment more efficient and attractive, in addition to their role in promoting the quality of teaching. (Eid & Al-Jabri, 2016). Conducted a study that included a sample of the students of King Fahid University. The study results showed that about (99%) of the students were using at least one SNs. Furthermore, another study suggested that using SNs has a positive impact on students, where students prefer to use SNs as a means of communication and cooperation (Malkawi & Halasa, 2016)

2.2. The Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT)

Originally, UTAUT consists of four dimensions that directly affect the behavioral intentions of individuals which, in turn, affect the individuals’ usage behavior. The four dimensions of UTAUT are Effort Expectancy (EE), Social Influence (SI), Performance Expectancy (PE), and Facilitating Conditions (FC). The UTAUT proved its efficacy empirically and surpassed the previous theories. UTAUT accounts for (70%) of variation in behavior in comparison with (27-40%) for the previous theories (Venkatesh, Morris, Davis & Davis, 2003). However, the UTAUT was criticized for being complex as well as its failure to explain the usage behavior (Van Raaij & Schepers, 2008; Casey & Wilson-Evered, 2012). Therefore, (Venkatesh, Thong & Xu, 2012) extended UTAUT to create UTAUT2, where the new version mainly focuses on the dimensions that affect the customer’s behavior, including Habit (HA), Price Value (PV), and Hedonic Motivation (HM). Accordingly, examining such a theory would increase the ability of applying and generalizing it in the context of organization and consumption. The relevant literature revealed that UTAUT2 was used in a wide range in predicting, explaining and measuring the extent of adopting and accepting technology.

For the purposes of this study, UTAUT2 is used as being the most prominent and comprehensive model in comparison with the previous theories and models. It is worth noting that UTAUT2 was extended by including two other dimensions, the lecturer’s support and the factors relating to students in order to give more comprehensive image about the actual use of SNs for educational purposes. All the factors relating to UTAUT2, except for the price value, were considered since the SNs are free and the students don’t have to pay any fees to subscribe. The suggested model for this study, as illustrated in Figure (1) includes: Effort expectancy, Performance expectancy, Social influence, Facilitating condition, Habit, Hedonic motivation, lecturer support, and student-related factors.

2.3. Performance Expectancy

Performance expectancy (PE) is defined as” the degree to which an individual believes that using the system will help him or her to attain more gains in job performance” (Venkatesh et al. 2003). This factor relates to the advantages that students would gain from using social media for educational purposes. The literature showed that PE has a significant impact on the individual’s intention to use new technology. For instance (Kijsanayotin, Pannarunothai & Speedie, 2009) examined PE within the context in Thailand and proved that it positively affects the user’s intention. Also, Umrani-Khan and Iyer (2009) created a model called “ELAN” to examine the effects of PE on student’s intention to use e-Learning and found similar results. In the context of this study, adopting social media sites for educational purposes, several studies revealed that there is a significant positive relationship between PE and the intention to use (Wang, Wu & Wang, 2009; Balakrishnan 2017; Gharrah et al., 2019).

2.4. Effort Expectancy

This factor refers to “the degree of ease associated with using the system” (Venkatesh et al., 2003). It is concerned about the ease of using SNs, i.e. the extent of effort exerted by the student in doing his/ her tasks using the SNs. Several studies were concerned about examining the expected effort in using SNs, where the study conducted by (Alalwan, Dwivedi & Rana, 2017) revealed that effort expectancy considerably affected the individuals’ intention to use the banking services via mobile phones in Jordan. In another study examining the factors that promote the acceptance of electronic business leadership in Morocco, the results showed that the effort expectancy had an impact on the Moroccan students with regard to accepting electronic business leadership (Abelmonaim, 2013).

2.5. Socialn Ifluence

Social influence refers to “the degree to which an individual perceives that the important others believe he/she should use the new system” (Venkatesh et al., 2003). This factor addresses the extent to which the society, family and friends accept and support using SNs for educational purposes. In a study for identifying the factors affecting the acceptance of e-commerce in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the results showed that social influence had a considerable impact on the intention to use that service (Alkhunaizan & Love, 2012). According to (Alalwan et al., 2017), social influence is seen as one of the most important dimensions related to investigating people’s intention to use banking services via mobile phones. Additionally, a study conducted by (Abelmonaim 2013) revealed that social influence has a remarkable impact on the Moroccan student’s intention to accept the core of electronic initiative. The results of this study match with those concluded by of (Al-Zedjali et al., 2014) which showed that there is a positive relationship between social influence and the intention to use SNs in education.

2.6. Facilitating Conditions

Facilitating conditions refer to “the degree to which an individual believes that the organizational and technical infrastructure exist to support the use of the system” (Venkatesh et al., 2003). Facilitating conditions have a direct impact on the actual usage in UTAUT2 theory. This dimension addresses the students’ ability to use SNs for educational purposes at university. It includes the facilitating conditions relating to infrastructure, such as electricity, internet, personal computer, tablet computer, etc. (Alalwan et al. ,2017) revealed that the facilitating conditions are considered as important factors related to using the banking services via the mobile phone. Furthermore, other studies revealed that there is a significant positive relationship between facilitating conditions and the actual usage (Venkatesh et al., 2003; Nawi, Nasir & Al Mamun, 2016; Gharrah et al., 2019).

2.7. Hedonic Motivation

Several studies stated that hedonic motivations have a considerable impact on information technology, where fun motives refer to “fun or pleasure derived from the use of technology” (Brown & Venkatesh 2005). According to (Ho, 2014) hedonic motivation represents the extent to which learners feel comfortable when using SNs in the educational process. This dimension addresses the extent to which the student feels stimulated and interested when using SNs for the educational purposes. In UTAUT2, hedonic motivations are critical elements related to behavioral intention. In the north of India, a study was conducted to investigate the factors affecting the user’ acceptance for (3G) technology. The results revealed that hedonic motivations have a significant relationship with the intention to use (Kumar, 2013; Hujran, Abu-Shanab & Aljaafreh, 2020). According to (Alalwan et al., 2017). Hedonic motivations are critical in terms of individuals’ intention to use banking services via mobile phones in Jordan.

2.8. Habit

Habit refers to “the extent to which people tend to perform behaviors automatically because of learning” (Limayem, Hirt & Cheung, 2007). This dimension addresses whether the students’ habits affect their intentions with regard to using SNs for educational purposes. Several studies suggested that habits have a great impact on individuals’ intention to use new technology (Nikolopoulou et al., 2020; Limayem & Hirt, 2003; Venkatesh et al., 2012; Gharrah et al., 2019). Furthermore, another study suggested that habits considerably predicted the students’ behavioral intention with regard to using Facebook in their academic performance (Al-Zedjali et al., 2014).

2.9. Lecturer’s Support

Many lecturers suggested that SNs are considered as beneficial educational tools for teaching (Bexheti, Ismaili & Cico, 2014). Several studies investigated the importance of supporting lecturers with regard to using SNs for educational purposes (Alhazmi et al., 2014, Bonilla Polo & Osman, 2017) According to (Boyd & Ellison, 2007), students’ participation and learning increase when the faculty members participate actively in teaching and learning activities. This dimension addresses the extent of ability of social networks site to provide the appropriate educational environment for lecturers to interact and communicate with students. The lecturers’ support is considered as an important factor; therefore, it will be used to identify the extent to which SNs affect the actual use for educational purposes among the students in the Jordanian universities.

2.10. Student-Related-Factors

Students are considered as the dynamic element in the educational process, in that students play a prominent role in developing and promoting their own knowledge and information (Al Zboun, Al Ghammaz & Al Zboun, 2018). In this vein, students look for knowledge, information and courses relating to their lessons. They communicate with the other students in the classroom to do homework, review lessons, exchange academic material and do the other activities that students usually do while using social media sites. The current study suggested that this dimension includes cooperation, participation and interaction. In this context, cooperation is defined as “the extent to which SNs support collaboration activities”; participation is defined as “the extent to which SNs support sharing academic materials”; and interaction is defined as “the extent to which SNs enhance interaction between students” (Umrani-Khan & Iyer 2009, Lin, Hoffman & Borengasser, 2013, Balakrishnan, 2017). According to (Moran & Gonyea, 2003), peer interaction has a positive relationship with students’ ability to solve problems in a creative way. In the current study, the variable named student-related factors comprise those three dimensions. They are important in terms of investigating the impact of SNs on the actual usage for educational purposes among the students in the Jordanian universities.

2.11. The Actual Usage

The actual usage (AU) refers to “the actual usage of SNs for learning” (Balakrishnan 2017). Several studies were conducted with regard to the actual usage (Venkatesh et al., 2003; Venkatesh et al., 2012; Tan et al., 2014; Balakrishnan, 2017). Accordingly; the current study hypothesizes that the actual usage could be affected by the pre-mentioned factors in relation to measuring the impact of using SNs for educational purposes.

3. The Research Model

Based on the above discussion, the following research model is proposed (Figure 1).

 

Figure 1. Model proposed

3.1. Hypotheses

H1: Performance expectancy positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities

H2: Effort expectancy positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities

H3: Social influence positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities

H4: Facilitating conditions positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities

H5: Hedonic motivation positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities

H6: Habit positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities

H7: Lecturer’s Support positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities

H8: Student- related-factors positively affect students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities

4. Methodology

4.1. Instruments

In order to achieve the study objectives, data were collected using a questionnaire that was designed electronically by a sample of the students from different Jordanian universities. The population of the current study is about (211663) students from the public Jordanian universities, while the selected study sample is (411) students, who were chosen by using the sample calculator available on (Sample Size Calculator- https://www.surveysystem.com/sscalc.htm) via a multistage-sampling technique. The total number of collected questionnaires was 411. After the refinement process, (31) questionnaires were excluded since they were not completed correctly. Finally, about (380) questionnaires were analyzed. The first part of the questionnaire consisted of the demographic data, including (gander, faculty, Educational qualification, the region). The second part of the questionnaire consisted of (38) questions which aim at measuring the model’s variables (see Table 1).

The questionnaire used Likert’s 5-point scale, that ranges from strongly disagree to strongly agree. The study instrument’s validity was verified by introducing it to a number of academic arbitrators who modified, explained and deleted some items.

Variable

Items

Reference

Performance Expectancy

I find that SNs are beneficial in my educational life

Venkatesh et al., 2012

Using SNs increases my opportunities to achieve important things in my education

Using SNs helps me to accomplish my educational tasks quickly

Using SNs increases my educational productivity

Effort Expectancy

Learning how to use SNs is easy for me

Venkatesh et al., 2012

My interaction with SNs is clear and well-understood

Using SNs is easy for me

 I can easily be skilful in using SNs

Social influence

The other important persons for me think that it is necessary to use SNs for educational purposes

Venkatesh et al., 2012

The individuals affecting my behavior think that I should use SNs for educational purposes

The individuals whose opinions are appreciated by me advise me to use SNs in my education

My friends’ suggestions and recommendations affect my decision related to using SNs for educational purposes

Yang, 2010

Facilitating Conditions

I have the necessary resources that enable me to use SNs

Venkatesh et al., 2012

I have the necessary knowledge that enables me to use SNs

I can ask for help from others when I have difficulties in using SNs

Using SNs is entirely within my control

Venkatesh et al., 2003

Hedonic Motivation

Using SNs for educational purposes is interesting

Venkatesh et al., 2012;

Yang, 2013

Using SNs for educational purposes is entertaining

Using SNs for educational purposes gives me the feeling of enjoyment

Using SNs for educational purposes is inspiring

Habit

Using SNs for educational purposes became a habit for me

Venkatesh et al., 2012

I’m addicted to using SNs for educational purposes

We must use SNs

Using SNs for educational purposes became a usual thing for me

Using SNs for educational purposes is something that I do without hesitation

Verplanken & Orbell, 2003

The Lecturer Support

I use SNs to ask for help from my teacher

Gupta & Bashir, 2018

SNs allows me to communicate with my Lecturer’s anywhere and anytime

Malkawi & Halasa, 2016

I can use SNs to do, accomplish and submit my educational duties without the need to go to university

Using SNs gives me the opportunity to communicate with my Lecturer’s

AL-Rahmi & Othman, 2013

Lecturer’s encourage using SNs for educational purposes

Student- related-factors

SNs allows constructing groups and using them for educational purposes

Malkawi & Halasa, 2016

SNs facilitate communication and interaction between students

I use SNs to exchange new educational ideas with my friends

Gupta & Bashir, 2018

Using SNs gives me the opportunity to discuss with my colleagues

AL-Rahmi & Othman, 2013

SNs provides the possibility of getting help related to educational matters from non-colleagues

Al-Mukhain et al 2014

The actual usage

I will use the SNs if I have the chance for that

Jakkaew& Hemrungrote, 2017

I intend to continue using SNs in the future for educational purposes

I plan to continue using SNs frequently for educational purposes

I always try to use SNs in my education

I will use the SNs if I have the chance to do so

Table 1. Research Questionnaire

4.2. The Study Sample

In Table 2, the frequencies and percentages for the demographic variables of the study are presented.

Variable

Frequency

Percent

Gender

Male

202

44.7%

Female

178

55.3%

Faculty

Scientific faculty

199

62.3%

Humanitarian faculty

181

37.7%

Educational Qualification

Diploma

17

4.3%

Bachelor

251

80%

Master

100

13.7%

PhD

12

2%

The region

South

111

30.3%

North

131

32.3%

Middle

138

38%

Total

 

380

100%

Table 2. Sample description

5. Results

5.1. The Reliability of the Study Instrument:

The reliability of the current study was assessed using Cronbach alpha coefficient. Cronbach alpha coefficient is considered as one of the most common methods for testing the internal consistency of the study variables. Table 3 shows Cronbach alpha, where all the study variables are acceptable since they are more than (0.70).

Factor

Cronbach’s alpha

PE

EE

HM

FC

HA

SI

LS

SRF

Total

0.88

0.89

0.92

0.79

0.85

0.87

0.92

0.90

0.94

Table 3. Reliability of the questionnaire

5.2. Research Findings

The main question in this study is “What are the factors affecting students’ Actual Usage of Social Networks Sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities?” The students’ answers were collected and analyzed using the statistical package SPSS version 23 in order to calculate the means and standard deviations as illustrated Table 4.

As noticed in Table (4), all the calculated means for the study variables are with a high degree. Particularly, the factor of effort expectancy was ranked in the first place, with a mean and a standard deviation of “4.3592, .61873” respectively, while the factor of social influence was in the last rank with a mean and a standard deviation of “3.7342, .77285” respectively.

Factor

Mean

Sed

Category

PE

EE

SI

FC

HM

HA

LS

3.9513

4.3592

3.7342

4.3303

3.9909

4.0053

4.1933

.74232

.61873

.77285

.44574

.84395

.74305

.66813

High

Very High

High

Very High

High

High

High

Table 4. the means and the standard deviations

5.2.1. Testing the Study Hypotheses:

In order to answer the research question, the researcher conducted several researches using variance inflation factor and tolerance test in order to verify that there is no high correlation between the independent variables; in that the value of variance inflation factor (VIF) shouldn’t exceed (10) (Diamantopoulos & Winklhofer, 2001) and tolerance should exceed the value (0.05). Table 5 shows the test results. (cut-off point less than 10).

Table 5 shows that all the values of the independent variables for the variance inflation factor were less than (10) and that all the values of the independent variables for tolerance test were more than (0.05). Moreover, variance test was used in order to test the hypotheses of the model. Table 6 shows the results.

Table 6 shows that R value which is (.776) could explain that the eight factors proposed by our model (Effort expectancy, Performance expectancy, Social influence, Facilitating condition, Habit, Hedonic motivation, lecturer support, and student related factors), may account for (R Square= .602) of variance concerning students’ dependence on SNS for educational purposes. Table 6 also shows that the total regression model is significant as at the level (α≤0.05) which means multiple regressions indicates significant positive effect between the independent and the dependent variables at the 0.05 level. The Table 7 shows the test of multiple regressions for the independent variables.

Factor

Collinearity Statistics

Tolerance

VIF

PE

HM

HA

FC

Lec_Sup

St_RF

EE

IS

.563

.605

.491

.720

.640

.615

.707

.644

1.776

1.654

2.037

1.388

1.562

1.627

1.414

1.553

Table 5. VIF and Tolerance Statistics

Model

R

R Square

Adjusted R Square

Std. Error of the Estimate

Sum of Squares

df

Mean Square

F

Sig

Regression

Residual

Total

.776

.602

.593

.42556

101.472

67.188

168.660

101.472

67.188

168.660

12.684

.181

70.039

.000

Table 6. Model summary

Model

Non-standardized Coefficients

Standardized Coefficients

T

Sig

 

B

Std. Error

Beta

1 (Constant)

PE

HM

HA

FC

Lec_Sup

St_RF

EE

SI

-.274

.096

.014

.158

.099

.175

.304

.117

.116

.237

.039

.033

.042

.058

.041

.042

.042

.035

.106

.018

.177

.066

.176

.302

.108

.137

-1.155

2.438

.423

3.774

1.711

4.286

7.229

2.777

3.348

.0249

.015

.673

.000

.088

.000

.000

.006

.001

Accept

Reject

Accept

Reject

Accept

Accept

Accept

Accept

Table 7. Coefficients

The results of multiple regression test in Table 7 shows that there are six independent variables which have a statistically significant impact on the dependent variable at the level (0.05). The results also showed that there are two factors that have no effect on the dependent variable, in that hedonic motivation has no statistically significant impact at (0.05). The results also revealed that there are two factors which have no impact on the dependent variable, where hedonic motivation has no statistically significant impact at the level (.673) and the value of Beta was (.106). The results also showed that the variable of facilitating conditions has no statistically significant impact at the level (.088), where the value of Beta was (.066).

Based on the above results, the variable of Performance expectancy is statistically significant at the level (.015), where the value of Beta was (.106). The variable of habit is statistically significant at the level (.000), where the value of Beta was (.177). The results also revealed that the variables of effort expectancy and social influence are statistically significant at the level (.006) (.001) respectively, where the value of Beta was (.108) (.137) respectively. The results also showed that the variables of lecturer’s support and student-related factors are statistically significant at the level (.000) (.000) respectively, where the value of Beta was for lecturer support and (.302) for student-related factors. (.176).

Based on the above results, the two null hypotheses were accepted as they state that “H4: Facilitating conditions (FC) positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities”, “H5: Hedonic motivation positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities”, while the alternative hypothesis for the other variables were accepted as it states that “the factors ‘Effort expectancy, Performance expectancy, Social influence, Habit, lecturer support, and student related factors’ positively affects students’ actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes in the Jordanian universities”

6. Discussion

The results showed that performance expectancy (PE) impacts the actual usage of SNs for educational purposes among students in the Jordanian universities. The progress that people witnessed all over the world as well as the multiple available methods and resources of knowledge have provided students with more opportunities to increase their knowledge and experiences in a certain field. This can be interpreted by the wide dissemination for the SNs that some of them are becoming interested in science (mention some of them) and the methods of conveying it to students with the easiest and most viable ways. The results revealed that at the significance level (α=0.015), where students think that when there is more benefit from using SNs, they will use them more frequently in education. This finding agrees with (Malkawi & Halasa, 2016) in that students intend to use the applications of SNs that are more beneficial for educational purposes.

Furthermore, the factor of effort expectancy (EE) has a positive impact on students’ actual usage for SNs, where the students have a good knowledge about the way of using SNs due to their frequent use of them. The significant result of regression analysis at the significance level (α=0.015) revealed that students think that it is easy to use SNs in their education since they don’t require significant experience or effort for using them. This finding agrees with (Balakrishnan, 2017), which described the category of youth who are more brilliant in using modern technology, in that they find it easy to use SNs for their educational process.

The results also revealed that the factors of habit (HA) and social influence (SI) have a positive impact on the students’ actual usage of SNs for academic purposes in the Jordanian universities. SNs play a vital role in all the societies. This is attributed to the ease of using and dealing with these sites, which made them more acceptable and used by the different categories in the society, particularly the “young students”. Therefore, due to the students’ usual usage of social networks sites in their daily communication styles, they won’t find a difficulty in using them for educational purposes. The significance level (α=0.00), (α=0.001) respectively. Revealed that students are affected by the opinions and decisions of their families and colleagues, in that the results showed that (70%) of the students consider the experiences of others in using SNs for educational purposes. They also pay attention to the feedback introduced by their colleagues. This finding agrees with (Al-Zedjali et al., 2014), which revealed that students are affected by the experiences of their friends and the surrounding community. This means that the decisions of the students in the Jordanian universities will be affected by their friends and peers regarding the actual usage of social networks sites for the educational purposes.

Facilitating conditions (FC) are not seen as factors that have a positive impact on the actual usage of social networks sites from the perspective of students in the Jordanian universities. This finding is attributed to the fact that all the students have their own laptops and internet-service provider, in that they can use them anywhere and at any time. Therefore, students think that the services provided by university in this regard has no impact on their decision to use (SNs) for educational purposes. This finding agrees with (Balakrishnan, 2017), where the study attributed this result to the prevalence of Internet and laptops among students, and thus they can access SNs any time.

The results also revealed that the factor of hedonic motivation (HM) doesn’t have a positive impact on the actual usage of social networks sites. SNs are enjoyable and attractive in terms of usage due to the numerous services and characteristics that attract users. However, the results showed that when the students use SNs, they don’t feel comfortable and enthusiastic because they think that they are monitored by the faculty members which, in turn, urge students to avoid using them for educational purposes. This finding agrees with (Bonilla Polo & Osman, 2017) where students think that using SNs doesn’t make their study interesting. Also, some respondents suggested that using SNs in their educational process requires self-control.

The study results also revealed that the factors of lecturer support (LS) and student-related factors (SRF) have a positive impact on the actual usage of social networks sites for educational purposes by the students of the Jordanian universities. Lecturers and students are the most two important factors in the educational process, in that the absence of one of them will lead to the failure of the educational process, particularly in the time that is characterized by rapid advancement and development. According to the student’s perspective, the existence of Lecturer’s and their participation in using the SNs would help students to communicate with them anywhere and at any time without boundaries; students can save time and effort while communicating with their Lecturer’s for educational purposes via SNs. The significance level at (α=0.00) for the student-related factors implies that students tend to participate, cooperate and interact with their colleagues in discussing the issues related to their assignments and lessons, where students communicate to solve and discuss the educational assignments. According to the study results, students tend to use social networks sites more frequently in their educational process, in case they noticed accessibility and cooperation of lecturers outside the lectures’ time. This finding agrees with the results of (Malkawi & Halasa, 2016), which was conducted in the universities of Irbid governorate/ Jordan, where the study revealed that the students don’t have the sufficient awareness to use SNs due to the lack of lecturer’s guidance for the joint assignments that students can do. The results also agree with (Alhazmi et al., 2014).

7. Conclusions

Finally, this study aimed at identifying the factors affecting the students’ Actual Usage of Social Networks Sites for the educational purposes in the Jordanian universities. The results showed that all the factors of this extension were accepted, and considered as having positive effects except for the facilitating conditions and hedonic motivation, considering that the students give no attention to the extent of facilitating conditions within the university environment or the extent of fun that they will experience during the process of learning.

Universities should know the factors most affecting students, focus on them, and use them to increase and raise the educational level at the university. Accordingly, the researcher recommends:

  1. 1.Universities should pay more attention to the importance of SNs by establishing an educational environment that is characterized the ability to convey knowledge to students via the best possible ways.  

  2. 2.Universities should save the high cost of some applications and replace that with the services provided by SNs, which are almost free and require little cost.  

  3. 3.Universities should make advantage of the prevalence of SNs among students for their interest, where universities should establish open communication channels between students and universities.  

  4. 4.These factors should be taken into consideration by universities and decision makers in order to promote and increase students’ use for SNs for educational purposes. 

Declaration of Conflicting Interests

The authors declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

Funding

The authors received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

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