Exploring awareness and factors facilitating diffusion, adoption and use of social media in teaching, learning and research by faculty members in Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria
This paper focused on Exploring Awareness and Factors Facilitating Diffusion, Adoption and Use of Social Media in Teaching, Learning and Research (TLR) by Faculty Members in Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria. The objectives of this paper are: To identify the types social media faculty members of Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, are aware of and to identify factors that facilitate the diffusion, adoption and use of social media in TLR by faculty members in Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria. The researchers used single case study research design for this study. The population of this study comprised all the faculty members including staff in training in the 12 faculties of ABU, Zaria with a total number of One thousand nine hundred and fifty nine (1, 959). The researchers selected participants purposefully who must have had life experiences with using social media in Teaching, Learning, Research. Thus, the researchers used this criterion to select 12 faculty members for the interview, one from each faculty. The researcher employed interview as the instrument for collecting data. The researcher adopted the thematic process of data analysis. It was found out that Faculty members were aware of two types of social media: Everyday life Social Media and Scholarly Social Media. Factors that facilitate the diffusion of social media for TLR are: being technologically savvy (curiosity), social media as a tool for interactions, social media as a tool for collaboration and Interactions among faculty members. Factors that facilitate Adoption of social media for TLR by the faculty members are academic network, official academic gathering, and family members. Factors that facilitate the Use of social media by the faculty members are social media benefit, ease of use and Exposure of faculty members abroad (training) etc. It was concluded that Faculty members in Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria were aware of scholarly social media and everyday life social media. They indicated that diffusion, adoption and use of social media for teaching, learning and research depend on some factors. These factors included curiosity, Academic connectivity like academic colleagues, online forums, students etc. It was recommended that University management should mount training programmes aimed at creating awareness on the academic implication of the two social media types and how best to apply in Teaching, Learning, Research. Training programmes in the form of workshops, conferences and symposium etc. would ensure increased awareness and encourage best practice and Faculty members should endeavor to acquire technology savvy skills as it will help in upstanding social media technologies which will improve Teaching, Learning and Research in the University.