Williams E. Nwagwu, University of Ibadan, Nigeria
Abstract: A questionnaire was used to collect data from 1676 undergraduate and postgraduate students randomly selected from three major Nigerian universities to understand how media gratification and constraints motivated their use of text messaging to meet educational needs. Sixty-five (65%) and 63% of the respondents reported using the technology for contacting peers and lecturers for educational matters while less than 40% have used technology to contact lecturers and others respectively. Generally, closeness to mothers and education of parents influence use of the technology for educational contact. The instrumental gratifications of SMS capability to enable students escape face to face communication, convenience and low cost also explain use of SMS to make educational contact although this activity is constrained by the difficulty to decipher the intention of the messages and by the confusion that often arises due mainly to unclear acronyms.
Keywords: short messaging services, SMS, Nigeria, mobile communication, texting