The use of electronic communication (social network) by open and distance students, the case of national open University of Nigeria, Benin Study Centre
The purpose of this study was to analyze the use of electronic communication (social network) by open and distance learners, henceforth referred to as ODL in the work. The case of National Open University of Nigeria, Benin study centre. The study is to explore the electronic device mostly used by open and distance learners, the usefulness of the electronic devices, (social network) in use, the benefit and the problem faced by students while making use of these social networks. Descriptive survey design was used, this involved expo factor .Questionnaires were distributed for the collection of data. The data were analysed using simple percentage. The findings showed that, majority of the ODL students use phone to access their individual social network, moreover the students engage in social network. Majority of the ODL students use face book and whatsapps as their preferred social networks. Major benefits of social networks according to the students are: lowered rate of idleness, creates room for feedback from facilitators, it help to know the happening in the school environment and it allow sending and receiving photographs or documents. While major problem they encountered are that the social networks distract academic studies and it is expensive to use, also more problems have to do with lack of fund, mismanagement of resources, loss of connection, slow internet connectivity, health hazard and sleepless nights (insomnia). The researcher recommended that students should be encouraged to use the school social networks such as noun ilearn, plog face book to access information that will be of immense benefit to them, instead of involving in irrelevant activities on the social network.
Keywords: Electronic, Communication. Social, Network, Open, Distance, Learners