The pattern of social media use and its association with academic performance among medical students

Eiad AlFaris, Farhana Irfan, Gominda Ponnamperuma, Amr Jamal, Cees van der Vleuten, Nassr Al Maflehi, Sairaa Al-Qeas, Awtan Alenezi, Mashael Alrowaished, Reem Alsalman, Abdullah Ahmed

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    25 Citations (Scopus)


    Background: There are concerns that the use of social media (SM) among medical students could affect academic performance. The objectives of the study were to investigate the pattern and reasons for SM use and their association with academic performance. Methods: A stratified random sample, frequency distribution and comparison of categorical variables with Chi-square and Fisher exact tests were used. Results: Of the 97% who responded, 98% used SM. The most popular were Whatsapp (87.8%), You tube (60.8%) and Twitter (51.8%) for general use; while You tube (83.5%), Whatsapp (35.5%) and Twitter (35.3%) for learning. For general use, there was a significant higher number of visits to You tube and Facebook among male students, while the reverse was true for Instagram and Path. Around 71% visited SM >4 times/day and 55% spent 1–4 hours/day. The main reasons for SM use were entertainment (95.8%), staying up-to-date with news (88.3%), and socializing (85.5%); for academic studies (40%). There was no significant association between Grade Point Average and the frequency of daily SM use or use during lectures. Conclusions: While almost all the students used SM, only a minority used them for academic purposes. SM use was not associated with academic performance.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)S77-S82
    Number of pages6
    JournalMedical Teacher
    Issue numbersup1
    Early online date2018
    Publication statusPublished - 6 Jul 2018


    Dive into the research topics of 'The pattern of social media use and its association with academic performance among medical students'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this