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Most versus least used social media: undergraduate students' preferences, participation, lurking, and motivational factors

Published Online:pp 244-266

This investigation aimed to survey undergraduate students on their social media preference, active participation, lurking behaviours, and motivational factors. This investigation focused on participation patterns and outcomes between the students' most used social media (MUSM) and least used social media (LUSM). A total of 769 participants consented to complete the electronic survey. The investigation results indicated that as undergraduate students change their class standings, so does their use of social media. Sophomores are more active in their MUSM compared to freshman undergraduate students. Sophomores were also more likely to lurk compared to junior and senior undergraduate students. The results also indicate that both commitment and individual motivational factors encourage undergraduate students to log in and use their LUSM. Lastly, results showed that undergraduate students use and participate in social media for traditional as well as a range of alternative activities. The main alternative activity performed by undergraduate students in their MUSM and LUSM was private and direct messaging to share content and chat with others.


social media, undergraduate students, participation, lurking, motivation, higher education