The effect of instagram social network usage on the Promotion of environmental Literacy of students

Document Type : علمی - پژوهشی


Payame Noor University, Tehran, Iran


Introduction: The growth of social networks has led to new applications in education including formal, informal and implicit (visual, auditory and written) training that has to be defined for these tools. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of using Instagram on promoting the environmental literacy of students. Given that environmental literacy has broad dimensions and ranges, to limit the issue only the main aspects of environmental literacy that include knowledge, attitude and environmental behaviour have been studied in this research. The importance of this research is that it familiarizes policymakers in environmental education with the impact of Instagram as among the ICT-based social networks for environmental education and promotion of the environmental literacy of the students who form an influential stratum of society. It also can be the basis for similar investigations in future studies aimed at examining the effects of social networks and different media, and their results can be used to optimize the future planning of this filed. Materials and methods: In terms of its purpose, this research is practical while, in terms of the data collection method, it is quasi-experimental with pre-test, post-test and control groups. The study sample included 40 students from Payam e Noor University of Markazi Province selected by the covariance sampling method and randomly assigned into the study and control groups. At first, both groups took the pre-test. Afterwards, the necessary training based on the United Nations Environment Programme (2015) and the situation and culture of the country was provided in the form of video posts on the specially created Instagram page, along with the written descriptions in the period of 4 December h to 4 February 2015. After 3 months, in order to measure the effect of the environmental training sessions provided through Instagram, the students took the post-test. The data have been analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics and SPSS software.Results and discussion: According to the results of the covariance analysis test and with respect to the fact that the significance level of the test in all the three variables of knowledge, attitude and environmental behaviour was 0.001 which is lower than 0.05, it can be concluded that there is a significant difference between the three variables in the pre- and post-tests; it indicates the impact of environmental education with the help of Instagram on these three dimensions and on the promotion of the students' environmental literacy. The mean comparison of the pre- and posttest results has shown that the mean variable of the post-test compared to that of the pre-test was higher in all the three variables. Also, the results of the post hoc test have shown that the mean of the Instagram group was higher than the mean of the control group for all three variables. The effect of training through Instagram for the variables of knowledge, attitude and environmental behaviour of the study group were, respectively, 0.474, 0.660 and 0.391. Conclusion: Environmental education through Instagram has a positive and significant effect on all the three dimensions of students' environmental literacy. Respectively, about 4%, 66% and 40% of the variance of knowledge, attitude and environmental behaviour of the study group can be explained exclusively by applying the training method (environmental education via Instagram).


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