Perceptions of Using Social Media as an ELT Tool among EFL Teachers within the Saudi Context

  •  Madawi Allam    
  •  Tariq Elyas    


Social media technologies have undeniably become an integral part of people’s lives and they have been widely used amongst new generations, particularly, university students. This spread of social media technologies has certainly made a huge impact on the way people learn and interact with each other, resulting in the emergence of communities of learning that are supported by collective intelligence. This study is based on quantitative methods, using a survey instrument to gather descriptive data regarding the perceptions of seventy-five (n=75) randomly chosen male and female English as a Foreign Language (EFL) teachers, at two Saudi tertiary institutions. The study utilized 14 Likert scale statements, where each statement had five Likert-type items for the participants to choose from. Analysis of the data gathered indicated, that the majority of the participants believe strongly in the pedagogical values and benefits of using social media as an ELT tool in EFL classes, in the Saudi context. Nevertheless, the majority expressed reservations with regard to the extent to which social media can be freely utilized in the EFL classroom. They perceive it as having a double edged sword effect, and that is mainly due to some undesired distractions that some students may resort to, which may occasionally result in the opposite of the intended effect of their usage. The study recommends more research studies in this area, so as to closely understand how experienced EFL teachers utilize social media in their classes, in order to develop the best practices for implementing social media in EFL teaching and learning within the Saudi context.

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