ANALYSIS OF TIME SPENT AND Frequency of use of SOCIAL MEDIA BY School grade RESEARCH CONDUCTED AND SUBMITTED BY MARIST COLLEGE ASHGROVE WITH ASSISTANCE FROM MOUNT SAINT MICHAELS COLLEGE ASHGROVE Aim & Hypothesis Aim: To investigate how much time is spent on social media throughout high school. Hypothesis: It is expected that as the year level of the student increases, time spent on social media and time spent per visit will decrease. It is further expected that male students will spend less time than female students on social media. Data Collection: 100 boys and 100 girls were surveyed across Years 8-12 to determine the amount of time spent on social media, and the frequency of visits. The sample population was surveyed via SurveyMonkey. The sample population was asked the following four questions: 1) 2) 3) 4) What gender are you? What year level are you in? How much time do you spend per week on social media? How many times do you visit social media sites per week? Results: Table of Results GIRLS Grade Total Time (h) No. Visits Time/Visit (h) 8 13.25 82.75 3:50 9 8.69 19.1 10:55 10 16 67.25 5:42 11 12.18 76.8 3:48 12 16.4 46.33333 8:29 BOYS Grade Total Time (h) No. Visits Time/Visit (h) 8 8.9 13.6 15:42 9 5.625 27.375 4:55 10 8.214 86.5 2:16 11 7.4 28.4 6:15 12 7.8 49.66667 3:46 Gender- comparative box and whisker plot of time spent on social media: Time spent per week (hours) 45 40 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 Girls Boys Results Time spent using social media per week - Boys 18 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 Time spent per week (hours) Time spent per week (hours) Time spent using social media per week - Girls y = 0.979x + 10.367 8 9 10 11 12 Secondary school year 10 6 4 2 0 8 10 11 Secondary school year 12 Time spent per visit (minutes) Time spent per visit (minutes) 9 10 11 12 Time spent per visit - Boys y = 0.0091x + 0.2457 8 9 Secondary school year Time spent per visit - Girls 12:00:00 10:48:00 9:36:00 8:24:00 7:12:00 6:00:00 4:48:00 3:36:00 2:24:00 1:12:00 0:00:00 y = -0.0425x + 7.7153 8 16:48:00 14:24:00 12:00:00 9:36:00 7:12:00 4:48:00 2:24:00 y = -0.094x + 0.5564 0:00:00 8 9 10 11 Secondary school year 12 Discussion The results did not support the initial hypothesis of an increase in time per an increase in year level. Instead, results revealed no definitive trend in time spent using social media over the grades. However, it was revealed that for both boys and girls, time spent on social media decreased in Year 11. This is consistent with the significant increase in workload which Year 11 brings. Time spent on Social media in Year 12 returned to Year 10 levels, possibly due to an increase in social commitments during this year and adaptation to workload. The results also proved that girls spend more time than boys on social media, by margins of up to three hours per week. This is possibly a result of boys’ comparatively small interest in social developments. Finally, the results proved that, for boys, time spent per visit to social media sites decreased as grade increased. This suggests that as boys get older, the use of social media changes from a form of long-term entertainment to a news source. Improvements In order to achieve maximum accuracy in future statistical summaries, it is recommended that: In order to achieve more representative results • Sample sizes from all grades should be increased. • Samples should be taken from many more schools. In order to increase the scope of the survey, • More qualitative data should be collected and analysed. • Links should be drawn between time spent studying and time spent on social media. In order to increase the accuracy of the survey, • All time data should be expressed in HH:MM:SS format • Graphs should be enlarged and multiple data series should be compared Conclusion An investigation was conducted into the amount of time spent on social media by boys and girls from Years 8 to 12. Although the results refuted the initial hypothesis of increasing grade resulting in decreasing time, various other observations were made, and accompanying inferences put forward to explain the trends observed. Overall, it was found that time spent using social media did not increase or decrease as the result of one variable (schoolwork) as expected, but rather as the result of many variables (social life, ability to cope with work) interacting. Considering this, it is recommended that future research and analysis be conducted to better understand how socio-dynamics of the teenage world can affect their prioritisation towards various factors of their lives.