Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Coats, Linda T.

Committee Member

Prince, Debra L.

Committee Member

Fisher, Melody.

Committee Member

King, Stephanie B.

Date of Degree


Original embargo terms


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Community College Leadership

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


College of Education


Department of Educational Leadership


The purpose of this study was to explore the community college students’ perceptions on the use and effects of social media and social networking sites as well as any differences in perceptions based on students’ demographic characteristics. A community college in the state of Mississippi was chosen for this study. This community college is a comprehensive educational institution, accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. The population for this study was currently enrolled freshman and sophomore students at one of the multiple locations. The respondents in this study were gathered by using a convenience sampling of students enrolled in academic core courses and electives or career and technical programs of study during the spring 2018 semester. The instrument that used for data collection in this study was a modified version of the Social Media Updates Survey (Pew Research Center, 2016). This study was quantitative in design, and a descriptive research methodology was used to conduct the study. The results revealed that students 25 years and older had significantly different social media habits than the students in the other age groups. Female students used social media more often than male students. More females than males used social media to interact with family. The data revealed that students mostly used mobile devices/tables to access social media and social networking sites. More students from academic programs accessed social media using desktops and laptops. More students from career technical education accessed social media using mobile devices. The most preferred social media websites were Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and SnapChat. Of the 201 respondents 41.3% agreed to social networking sites help them academically in getting educational materials for assignments or projects in class and 48.8% agreed that social networking sites are an effective tool for e-learning. 45.8% disagree to social media sites having positively affected their GPA. When asked the question, Social media networking sites have been effective in enhancing my active learning skills, 41.3% disagreed.