A Linguistic Analysis of WhatsApp Conversations among Undergraduate Students of Joseph Ayo Babalola University

Abosede Adebola Otemuyiwa

Abstract


This study is an analysis of WhatsApp conversations among undergraduate students of Joseph Ayo Babalola University. Five conversations were collected from five undergraduate students. The conversations were then forwarded to the researcher’s phone. Screen shots of each conversation was taken so as to use it as it is on the WhatsApp pages of the owners that are kind enough to release their phones. Pragmatics is the theoretical framework used for the study. The power of influence of given contexts is revealed on messages, on speaker’s meaning and speaker’s intention in the selected conversations among undergraduate student. The power of emoji and smileys which are the digital version of body language in reducing ambiguity and adding emotional context to what is said is revealed in the selected conversations among undergraduate students in Joseph Ayo Babalola University. We conclude by suggesting that more smileys and emojis be used by conversationalits, since phones even suggest them as you type your conversations. WhatsApp is also used for formal instructions between teachers and students, so more teachers should imbibe the culture of using it for passing instructions to their students. Lastly, seminars and workshops can be organized by government institutions and private organizations to train instructors especially in the higher institutions of learning, on WhatsApp technology and proper usage.



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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22158/selt.v5n3p393

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