Educational Research & Development

(ISSN: 2360-9494)

July 2014, Vol.2 (4).

© Author(s) 2014. This work is distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research Article


Mobile Phones and Social Networking as Tools for Promoting Reading and Literacy Learning

Gabriel B. Egbe, PhD1* & Chinwe Muodumogu, PhD2

1*Department of English and Literary Studies
Veritas University (The Catholic University of Nigeria),
Abuja, Nigeria.
2Faculty of Education
Benue State University,
Makurdi, Benue State,

Accepted 29 July, 2014; Available Online 31 July, 2014.


Tremendous transformations in ICTs have questioned traditional concepts and constructs of reading and literacy. The use of mobile phones, especially those designed as 'smart phones', and access to various social network platforms have increased the volume of what people see and read daily and the frequency of interaction with different digital texts. The present study has investigated 200 respondents (staff and students) of two universities in Nigeria to ascertain the extent to which mobile phones and membership of online social network platforms promote reading and the literacy practices of Nigerian university students and academics. It was revealed that mobile phones and membership of social network promote reading to a high extent along the age variable. However, the literacy practices of students were low on critical literacy activities. Bearing in mind that the Web 2.0 revolution is a communication shift which must be harnessed to promote reading and literacy learning in Nigeria, it is concluded that teachers should first of all avail themselves of the affordances of new media and technologies and consequently provide students more opportunities to engage in and with digital texts; expose learners to the multiple and complex nature of new literacies; and encourage constant literacy learning to leverage young Nigerian adults join the collaborative, competitive and digitized global community of young learners.

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