Media Use as a Predictor of the Political Behaviour of Undergraduates in South-West Nigeria

Dele Odunlami


The objective of this research was to determine the predictive value of media exposure on the political knowledge and behaviour of undergraduates in South-West Nigeria. It also sought to discover which medium is the dominant or preferred source of political information for respondents and which of the media would have greater influence on their political knowledge and behaviour. The research platform was survey. Through a combination of stratified and multi-stage sampling, a comprehensive sample frame of 4,700 respondents was generated from a cluster of faculties/colleges from six universities. From the 4,228 copies of questionnaire returned and analysed, findings showed that contrary to earlier-held notions, exposure to the electronic media (Radio, Television and Internet) predicted higher political knowledge and behaviour among respondents than the print media. The results also showed that there was a significant influence of exposure to media on respondents? political behaviour (t4226 = 2.365; p<.05_. The calculated t value of 2.365 was found to be significantly higher than the critical t value of 1.960 at 4226 degrees of freedom at 0.05 level of significance. The study also revealed that television was the most dominant source of political information among the respondents. Based on these findings, it was suggested, among others, that Government and media proprietors should synergise efforts to curb the incidence of poor reading culture among youths through reduced costs and richer contents of the print media.

Keywords: Media Use, Political Knowledge, Media Exposure, Political Behaviour.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3267 ISSN (Online)2224-3275

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