Date of Award

Fall 12-15-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Political Science

First Advisor

Kurt Young, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Hashim Gibrill, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Gerry L. White, Ph.D.


The purpose of this study was to ascertain the degree to which protest participation is influenced by one or more social media usage factors: political engagement, political awareness, political activism (social media activism), and political participation. Using a purposive sampling technique, 120 respondents were selected from among groups of protest participation organizations. A series of regression equations were tested along a theorized path leading to protest participation online and offline.

Results show political awareness significantly influenced political engagement, social media usage, and social media activism. Social media activism, in turn, served as the greatest predictor of protest participation. These findings suggest individuals engaged in social media activism coupled with political awareness, increase the likelihood of individuals mobilizing towards protest participation.