Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



First Advisor

Janet Grigsby




social media, friendship, technology, students, faculty


Sociologists argue that new communicative technologies have changed the way in which Americans interact, relate, and connect with one another. Studies show that as a result of people’s dependency on new technologies like Facebook, friendships in the United States are rapidly declining. While there is already research addressing how younger individuals use Facebook, this study adds to the literature by examining how both younger and older individuals use Facebook. Additionally, this study examines how younger and older individuals define friendships, why they use Facebook, and whether or not they believe Facebook has affected the dynamics of friendships. Since the Union College students who were surveyed grew up on Facebook, it was hypothesized that the student’s conception of friendship, as well as their views of Facebook, would be different from the faculty member’s views. Faculty members were expected to hold more negative views of Facebook and the effects it has had on friendships. Findings suggest that students have different views of friendships than faculty members do, and hold more positive views of Facebook and the effects it has had on friendships.