Date of Graduation
Master of Science in Agricultural & Extension Education (MS)
Agricultural Education, Communications and Technology
Second Committee Member
4-H;Cooperative Extension;Facebook;Social Media
As social media rises in popularity, agents with 4-H responsibilities have the opportunity to implement social media platforms in their communication outreach. The purpose of this study was to identify how agents with 4-H responsibilities in Arkansas use Facebook for communication purposes and their perceptions of its effectiveness. This information helps provide understanding of the effects of Facebook on county 4-H programs in Arkansas and assists agents in determining how to implement or better utilize Facebook in their county programs. The study had three research objectives: 1) describe the usage of Facebook by agents in Arkansas with at least a 25% 4-H responsibility, 2) describe the perceptions of Facebook by agents in Arkansas with at least a 25% 4-H responsibility, and 3) determine if a relationship existed between identified demographics of agents in Arkansas with at least a 25% 4-H responsibility and their usage and perceptions of Facebook. The results of this study found agents are using Facebook for communication purposes in their county program and view it as effective. Agents use Facebook for 0-5 hours per week and post 0-3 times a week. The most popular Facebook tool among agents was Facebook Pages and the most popular post type was posts with graphics. Agents began increasing their usage of Facebook after the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020 to reach their target audience of 4-H parents and guardians in a timely and effective manner. Agents view Facebook as a more effective form of communication than other identified forms (i.e. emails and newsletters) and view Facebook as effective for increasing involvement at 4-H events. A one-way ANOVA found there was a statistically significant difference in mean Facebook usage as a result of agent percentage of appointment (F (2, 40) = [6.94], p=0.0026) and a statistically significant difference in mean perceptions of Facebook as a result of appointment percentage (F (2, 40) = [3.61], p=0.0362).
Padgett, H. (2023). Facebook in County 4-H Extension Programs in Arkansas: Is it Effective for Communication?. Graduate Theses and Dissertations Retrieved from https://scholarworks.uark.edu/etd/4945