As a society we are constantly connected to the world around us. The accurate definition Is explained best by Boyd and Allyson. 2007 “ SONS or Social Networking System Is a web-based service that allows individuals to construct a public or semi-public profile within a bounded system, articulate a list of other users with whom they share a connection, and view and traverse their list of connections and those made by others within the system. This system or software is made up of all social networking sites some of which are Faceable, Mainstream, Twitter, Tumbler, Snatch, and the list goes on. It Is clear that we live In a world where we have access to any piece of information at any given time during the day. With this boom of technology It Is becoming harder and harder for us to disconnect from the world around us. There is very little chance to decompress have access by not only our computers, but also our phones now have APS that allows us to connect to social media at any given time of the day or night.
The question is does this constant access of information and constant staying on social media affect our performance as students? Prospectus The Higher Education Research Institute in 2007 reported that ninety four percent of first year college students use social networking websites. In 2005 research by Macrobiotics and kepi revealed, “ Eighty five percent of students at a large research university had accounts on Faceable, the most popular social networking site. ” This leads us to the question does this way of revolving around social media impact our daily lives and the way we function?
The National Sleep Foundation conducted a survey to reveal if there was a correlation between long hours of social media use and if it affected sleep habits along with performance levels. To be able to function properly one’s sleep is Just as viable as the basic needs such as food and water. Before the big boom of technology humans lived much simpler lives. For example, before the invention of computers, cellophanes, and even motor vehicles people had a more organic and natural way of life. Even the food they put into their bodies was untarnished by chemicals.
Technology is intended to make one’s life better; however like many things that are used in excess it becomes unhealthy. When these forms of social media affect our sleep cycle we maybe dealing with an addiction that must be managed. Lead researcher Diana Tamari of a recent Harvard study told the Los Angles Times, “ l think the study helps to explain why people utilize social media websites so often. I think it helps explain why Twitter exists and why Faceable is so popular, because people enjoy sharing information about each other (Nature, 2012). Diana Tamari was involved in a study conducted by Harvard University, which sought the answers to why social media was so addictive. The answer to their question turned out to be very a simple one. People are addicted to talking about their problems. They found in researching “ That the act of disclosing information about oneself activates the same part of the brain that is associated with the sensation of pleasure, the same pleasure that we get from eating food or getting money (Nature, 2012). I say all of this to lead to the main point of our own research; social media is addictive. When social media becomes a problem and affects our basic needs such as sleeping patterns; the problem flows over into our daily lives. To simply state it our performance levels will decrease. In a study done by Christina J. Calamari, PhD, Thornton B. A. Mason, MD, PhD, MACE, Sarah J. Radcliff, PhD. , “ Teenagers getting 8 to 10 hours of sleep on school nights tended to have 1. – to 2-fold lower multitasking indices compared with those getting less sleep.
Thirty-three percent of the teenagers reported falling asleep during school. ” Research is proving that social media is unhealthy. This problem did not escalate quickly overnight, but has been slowly evolving monster that has grown into a problem that must be dealt with. Kirsches and Sharkskin (2010, p. 1238) claim that “ Students tend to participate in such website activities while doing their homework so that it may have negative effect on their academic achievements by interrupting them from the learning process.
Therefore, between SONS usage and student academic performance shown at schools and universities. Many doctors, websites, self-help books, etc. Tell us that social media is a huge leader in sleep loss, however in Sleep Care’s article on social media and sleep they write that they believe social media can cause individuals to get more, effective sleep. “ Faceable has over 1 billion users worldwide while Twitter had over 500 million last year and is quickly growing every day'(Sleepwear, 2014).
This goes without saying that a big chunk of the world is connected to one social media site or another. In order to be engaged in a social media site, one must “ follow’ or “ like” another. They continue with, “ Social media enables an individual to feel supported from individuals closely tied to their lives and from friends and family afar” (Sleepwear, 2014). By connecting with people who share similar interests and opinions a person who actively utilizes social media finds oneself in an overall better state of mind.
This relates directly to better sleep because having a peaceful mind when lying down to go to bed is essential in a good night’s sleep. In 2010 media headlines read: minor Friends Can Make You Fat. Reading these headlines, researchers at US San Diego and Harvard studied the correlation between social networks, sleep patterns and drug usage, after much research and hours of examination they discovered, “ The use of social networks by adolescents influences sleep patterns, sleep deprivation, and drug use” (Beers 2010). Why is the sleep cycle important?
What occurs during the sleep cycle that is so valuable to the human body? “ Stage 1 is the beginning of the sleep cycle, and is a relatively light stage of sleep in which the brain produces high amplitude theta waves, which are very slow brain waves. Stage 2 is the second stage of sleep and lasts for approximately 20 minutes. The brain begins to produce bursts of rapid, rhythmic brain wave activity known as sleep spindles. This stage was previously divided into stages three and four. Deep, slow brain waves known as delta waves.
Most dreaming occurs during the fourth stage of sleep, known as rapid eye movement (ERM) sleep” (Cherry, 2011) These stages of sleep are very valuable for the wellbeing of humans. These processes allow us to recuperate from the day and heal. The body can physically heal itself by resting. The same concept applies to the mind. Once the technology is finally set aside most young adults only receive approximately five hours of sleep per night. Sleep deprivation is the reason why in this day and age there are more mishaps and “ slip-ups” than ever before.
With the lack of sleep one’s comprehension skills are severely lacking. When it is time to sleep individuals around the world grab their phones. Peg Fitzpatrick surveyed 1, 000 online individuals thus finding, “ Our Faceable and Twitter activities continue even after we’ve hit the hay, with forty-eight percent of respondents checking in on activity when they wake p in the middle of the night or as soon as they wake up in the morning (Fitzpatrick 2011). In her online blob, Peg Fitzpatrick asked many friends about how social media affects their sleeps habits.
Sadly, many of her friends responded with low affects because they have -in few words?? grown immune to social media. They check their social media sites every night in the same amount of time so their body is used to getting that same amount of sleep. Social media has affected these friend’s sleep habits. They have been a part of the world of social media so long that their body has accepted it as a part of the daily routine. With easy access to sites responsibility to bedroom may result in sleep loss, delays in initiating sleep, daytime sleepiness and more,” says researcher Teresa Roar.
Those who said they usually connected to friends online before getting into bed reported sleeping an average of “ 8 hours and 10 minutes a night compared with 9 hours and 2 minutes among those who never connected” (Thomson & Reuters 2014). Studies also show that sleep loss can lead to a variety of other problems such as: obesity, depression, high blood pressure, difficulty regulating emotions and lower grades. Kids who frequently viewed TV before bed were four times more likely to report waking up several times during the night than non-viewers, and frequent social networks were three times more likely to wake up a lot.
Researchers reported in Sleep Medicine, ” kids who regularly played video games or listened to music at bedtime had significantly more difficulty falling asleep” (Thomson & Reuters 2014). Another factor that also may play into the problem is when a device with access to social media is near the bedtime pillow, people tend to wake up throughout the night. Some tend to immediately return to leap but others may stay away for an hour or more in the middle of the night on social media before they return to sleep. This growing problem may seem insignificant, but over time this continual routine is unhealthy for the body.
The life of a student, no matter what age, takes a toll on the body. Deadlines to meet, Jobs to do, activities to plan, activities to attend, homework to complete, grades to maintain, etc. The life of a student is often either all about freedom or all about grades. This is because as students we are learning what actions to take in order to have a balanced life. Sleep is one area that is often neglected by young adults because there is more on the plate than ever before. The society of today is fast paced and demanding. In order to stay in control one must lose a few hours of sleep to stay ahead of the game.
What is the accurate definition of sleep and rest? It is referred to as, “ The period in which the basic metabolic rate decreases, soft tissue and muscles are relaxed and revalidated, and the brain is able to process things that have been learned during the day (Clifford, 2007). Harvard Women’s Health Watch states, “ There are six reasons for eating enough sleep, namely for improved learning and memory, maintenance of metabolism and weight, increased safety, enhanced mood, cardiovascular health and boosting up the immune system” (Fanned, 2013). With any choice comes an appropriate consequence.
Depending on the choice the consequences could be positive or negative. When an individual decides to push off sleep for whatever reason negative consequences follow?? sickness, a drop in school performance, a negative or poor attitude, and an exhausted body. In a 2009 study Tracker noticed that students experiencing sleep deprivation try to avoid more difficult tasks. Also, they often are not aware that the difficulties they are experiencing academically can be directly related to their poor sleep habits. This can often lead to frustration and depression due to the low-test scores they are receiving.
This would explain the commonly heard comment, “ l can’t understand why I did so badly, I spent all the previous day studying” (Engle-Friedman, 2003; Filcher, 1997). In 2013 an experiment was put into action to identify the factors affecting quality of sleep, and assess the impact of low quality sleep on the daily activities of students. The Results of social Edie follow: “ Non-users of social networking, such as Faceable, MANS, and Twitter, 0. 5-2 hours a day had the best sleep quality among the groups, but the result again cannot be taken into consideration due to the non-significant p value (p= 0. 42) ( Fanned, 2013). ” Even though social media is relatively new, it has found itself into the daily lives of many young students. With most media distractions are not uncommon. People see social media as way to relax, but are blinded by the negative effects that it has on their health and even on their grades. A large-scale study by the Kaiser Family Foundation (Beers, 2012) found that, “ teens spent fifty three hours per week engaged with some form of electronic media. ” That’s more than seven hours per day. Most of the time spent was during the night when the volunteer is in bed.
Research also shows that lack of sleep has been linked with mood swings during the day. Social media has a negative impact in that it influences friends in a network. It has also brought about a sleep disorders such as sleep testing. This is a recent development. The brain is hardwired to do what it is become adapted to. In this age brains are coming more and more adapted to staying on computers and cellophanes all day long. This practice has drifted over into our sleeping habits. This is not only a distraction to the one who is doing it but also to the one who receives the text because the alert wakes them up in the middle of the night.
The brain cannot function at maximum capacity when it is weary. This causes one who loses sleep to perform poorly on test and during their daily activities. In the research done by Dry. Rubin Had, social media effects on sleep are analyzed in the life of young students. Sleep is a vital necessity such as eating a proper diet, drinking plenty of eater, and exercising daily. Dry. Had also shows that poor quality sleep negatively affects a person’s physical, psychological and emotional well being and leads to poor job performance.
She goes on to further explain how sleep is like a cave you have to enter, this meaning that each human body has to prepare itself for the sleep cycle. A person must develop a routine to help their body to shut down and begin to recuperate. By adding light from computers or cellular devices the body is not able to properly shut down for the night. The light from laptops or cellular devices causes the brain to be confused. When the brain senses darkness it connects this with sleep so it makes the hormone melatonin. This hormone makes us sleepy.
When a student is on a computer the brain is tricked by the light, believing that it is earlier than it usually is. Because of this it takes a student longer to merge into the ERM cycle. “ The college student needs about eight hours of sleep. When a college student puts down their cellular device they can therefore get more sleep. ” (Pipsqueaks, 2013). Method To conduct this study, participants will be recruited on the Blue Mountain College campus. Participants will be comprised of eighteen and older, male and female, rotational and nontraditional college students.
We will recruit the participants by word of mouth, signs posted around campus and the incentive of coffee and doughnuts. The participants will be required to sign a consent form to the study, answer demographic questions, take the short survey and not talk about the survey to friends. Upon request noted on the demographic form, participants can be emailed the surveys results, which will be the debrief section of the study. This study is designed to figure out if prolonged hours of social media use at nighttime will affect test scores the next morning.
Total hours spent on social media will be test complied with demographic questions and five questions from the fifth grade level language arts section of the Mississippi Curriculum Test (MAC). Testing will take place in the student lounge between the hours of on varies days, to which we will take participants at any time during that block of time. Participants can score between O and 100 on the MAC section and that score will then be compared to the total amount of time they stated they spent on social media in the demographic section.
We believe higher test scores will show a lower amount of nightly social Edie use and lower test scores will show a higher usage of social media. Results The survey we conducted involved sixty-two volunteers. Group A participants spent less than one hour on social media the night before and group B spent anywhere from an hour to over six hours. The purpose for our testing was to create a correlation between low comprehension skills and late hours spent on social media. Our hypothesis stated that students who spent more time on social media would make a lower grade than those who did not.
Figure 1. 1 is a scatter plot to show the range of test scores from our 62 participants. Figure 1. 1 Figure 1. 2 The break down of hours spent on social media per individual is seen in figure 1. 2. Majority of hours that were spent on social media falls between less than an hour and two hours. For this reason we created two groups and compared their test scores to each other. The total hours grouped can be viewed in figure 1. 3. Out of the 62 participants 47% spent less than an hour on social media and 53% spent an hour or more on social media. Figure 1. The correlation of our survey shows our hypothesis to be false. The two-tailed P value equals 0. 1683, which is 16%. By conventional criteria, this difference is insider to be not statistically significant because it is not less than . 05 and thus not supporting our claim. The mean of Group One less than 1 hour minus Group Two greater than 1 hour equals 9. 67, 95% confidence interval of this difference: From -4. 20 to 23. 53. Participants who spent less time on social media approximately had the same average as those who spent more than two hours on social media.
Figure 1. 4 below displays the statistical data from the study. Mean. 24 57. 58 SODS. 09 28. 97 SEEM 4. 66 5. 04 N 29 33 Figure 1. 4 Discussion The Age of Information is here and it is here to stay. As a result, our social media use is steadily on the rise. The purpose of the study was to see if prolonged usage of social media at night affects our comprehension skills the proceeding morning. This research is important because if people are aware of the effects that social media could have, they might reduce the amount of time they spend on different networks.
Our hypothesis was, if a student spends two or more hours on social media before entering their sleep cycle it would negatively affect their test scores the following day. After conducting the experiment, our team found no correlation between hours spent n social media the night before and low comprehension skills. We found many factors in need of improvement throughout our experiment. If time allowed a pilot study would have been ideal to allow for us to discover things that we might fix before conducting the study.
Also, we could have fine-tuned our data collection method and made sure we were selecting the proper statistical analyses. One of our initial plans was to incorporate the experimenters’ GAP in order to determine if the student had a learning disability. However, when making out the test samples, we chose not to add a blank for the test takers to insert their GAP. Additional reading comprehension questions would have been helpful for us to determine if the student had any reading or learning disabilities. Also, incorporating a variety of questions could have better helped our results.
The demographic portion of our test became a distraction for the test takers. The amount of demographic questions that was asked seemed to bombard the participants of the study. Fewer questions could possibly have been more helpful in this instance. In our attempt to mask our study we ended up causing our participants to rush through the numerous demographic questions. Another factor that hurt the results of our study was the number of participants who refrained from social media. Our data was skewed due to a low number of participants who spent less than one hour on a social media website.
The location we chose to conduct the experiment could have been moved to an area better fitted for testing. Instead, we chose a central location in one of the buildings on campus. Many people came in and out of our testing room. This offered many distractions for our participants. The constant flow of traffic allowed the volunteers to be distracted. Having a quieter environment could have helped our test takers focus more. In our tests. The group’s definition of social media was clearly explained. We spread the word about our experiment in a timely manner so that the majority of students on campus were made aware of our experiment.
Also, we provided multiple days for students to come in so that testing did not interfere with their class schedules. We offered donuts and coffee, which were effective incentives for the students. Our experiment could be useful for other groups studying sleep by helping them better calculate the correlation between social media use and sleep habits. For future studies we will need to develop a more effective way to study the effects of prolonged social media use on students so that we will have more accurate results.