What the survey says
In today’s world, social media has become a part of our everyday lives, and among all the platforms, Facebook is one of the most popular.
Almost more than one billion people are using the social network, Facebook, launched by Mark Zuckerberg in 2004 primarily for the students of Harvard University, which quickly spread to other schools and beyond.
Facebook is the most sought-after social network among university students in Bangladesh.
It allows establishing relationships with classmates, consulting each other about their courses, and accessing information from other students regarding lecture summaries and resources. Students can even apply for jobs and internships by using Facebook pages or groups.
It is true that Facebook helps people develop skills and gain knowledge regarding almost anything there is, but it is also one of the most distracting forms of social media that can keep students from their homework and assignments.
By using Facebook, we keep ourselves “busy” -- it doesn’t seem like a waste of time when we are chatting or just scrolling through the endless feed.
Some university students stay on Facebook even during classes, and as a result, they don’t understand the lectures properly.
People who waste time on social media platforms ultimately cannot pass their exams, and eventually end up with a very poor CGPA. Maintaining a good CGPA is probably the most crucial thing in a student’s life, and to do so, they have to study.
Following a routine always helps with maintaining time for studying every day, but even if students maintain a schedule, they will still end up wasting time using Facebook.
There are so many options on this platform -- you can upload pictures and videos, like, comment, and share them; you can add friends and get notifications for even the simplest things.
A survey has been done on the impact on student CGPA for overusing Facebook with students of three well-known universities. We surveyed almost 100 students, and the following questions were asked:
“Which social media affects your CGPA the most?” 87.1% of the students chose only Facebook, 12.9% selected Instagram. None of them marked other social media options, like Skype, WhatsApp, Twitter, or Viber.
To the second question, “What do you use Facebook for?” with the options including spending leisure time, social communication, study purpose, and personal activities, all of the options were marked by 61.3% of students; 25.8% said they used Facebook only for social communication, and only 9.7% used Facebook only for leisure.
Our survey asked students how many hours they spent on Facebook a day -- 52% of students used Facebook 6-8 hours daily, 29% used it for 3-5 hours daily, and 10% used Facebook for an unlimited amount of time, thus not getting enough time to study.
Fourth question: “How many hours do you spend on Facebook for academic reasons a day?” 52% said they used Facebook for less than 30 minutes a day for academic purposes, and the other 29% spent 1-2 hours.
We asked students: “Do you think wasting your valuable time on Facebook is harmful to your academic excellence?”
48.4% agreed and 29% strongly agreed on that wasting time of Facebook was harmful to academic performance.
I wanted to know if the overuse of Facebook really had a negative impact on a student’s CGPA, to which 51.6% of students chose “agree,” and 25.8% chose “strongly agree.”
I conversed with a student from NSU, hearing out his university “disaster period.” He was addicted to Facebook, and spent all his time on his phone except when he slept.
He was on probation for three consecutive semesters, and was about to drop out. So he took his parents to the university authorities to convince them; he started studying and deactivated his Facebook account.
That very semester he got a good GPA.
He believes students cannot just stop using Facebook altogether, since various academic activities such as collecting lecture materials and other study resources take place on this social media platform.
But he thinks students should use Facebook for limited periods of time.
Delwar Hossain is an apprentice lawyer, Dhaka Judge Court.