Social Media and Grades

The advancement of social media like Tumblr, Facebook, and Instagram has changed drastically and redefined teen culture. We have all seen or posted statuses on Facebook or Twitter.

We have all heard of or used common hashtags like “selfie,” “throwbackthursday,” or “womancrushwednesday” on the ever-so-popular Instagram app. And why do we, teenagers, do this? The answer is simple — it’s fun. But as social media grows drastically, is it hurting our grades?

A survey was taken by 35 students at Pascack Hills to find out how much time students spend using social media on an average day. The results indicated that, on average, students accessed social networks for at least 2-3 hours a day.

This probably does not come as a surprise to the average high school student. However, when we think about juggling our time between schoolwork and extracurricular activities, while at the same time spending 2-3 hours a day on Facebook or Instagram, it’s easy to see how we can become overwhelmed. We end up doing homework during lunch, and consequently spend less time studying for tests, or even not studying at all. We become too distracted on the endless fun of social networking, resulting in lack of sleep and a decrease in our GPAs.

PHHS student Josephine Yao, who is very involved with extracurricular sports and activities and has a GPA of 4.5, explained how she manages her time. Before studying for a test, Josephine turns on the “no disturbance” button in her iPhone so that she does not get distracted.

At the same time, Josephine believes that social networking doesn’t necessarily hurt a student’s grade. She emphasizes that she turns off the “no disturbance” button once in a while because “it’s important to take a break for a couple of minutes in between.”

Conversely, she admits that her phone can serve as an aid in studying, often using it to ask classmates questions about homework and tests.

So, does social media hurt our grades? Not necessarily. If you manage your time, it won’t hurt. Having fun is just as important as studying.