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Kolesnikov V.N., Melnik Yu.I., Teplova L.I. (2019). Internet activity and problematic Internet use in adolescence. National Psychological Journal, 1, 34-46

Abstract

Background. The issue of Internet addiction is being actively discussed in foreign and Russian psychology in two recent decades. However, experts have not developed a common opinion on the concept of ‘Internet addiction’. Therefore different terms are used to refer to disharmonious relationships in the ‘man-Internet’ system: ‘problematic Internet use’, «’excessive Internet use’, ‘compulsive Internet use’, etc. Psychologists show more agreement in the description of symptoms of Internet addiction. Generalization of these features makes it possible to develop tools for psychological assessment of Internet addiction.

Objective is to identify the components of problematic Internet use in adolescence using the questionnaire developed by the authors of this paper, and to describe the relationship of the components of problematic Internet use with using various Internet services.

Design. Based on the analysis of the psychological literature, the symptoms of problematic Internet use were identified. The selected symptoms constituted the content of the questionnaire. Correlation and factor analysis revealed components of problematic Internet use. Relationships between problematic Internet use and using different Internet services were studied.

The sample of the study consisted of 150 people aged 16 to 23 years: 64 high school students and 86 university undergraduates. The data was collected throughout the period from October, 2017 to November, 2017.

Results. The study of symptoms and manifestations of problematic Internet use in high school students and university students allowed to develop a scale of problematic Internet use bringing together five components (super-value of Internet activity, frustration of vital needs, anticipation of accessing the Internet, reducing monitoring time and reducing the significance of events outside the network). The features of using Internet services depending on gender and age are described. Correlations of problematic Internet use with types of activity in a network are established. The most closely components of problematic Internet use are connected with use of communicative (social) services.

Conclusion. The study of problematic Internet use and its components allows us to offer a five-component model of problematic Internet use and describe the relationship of problematic Internet use with Internet services and applications using.

Received: 03/23/2018
Accepted: 09/03/2018
Pages: 34-46
DOI: 10.11621/npj.2019.0104

By: Kolesnikov V.N.; Melnik Y.I.; Teplova L.I.;

Sections: Developmental Psychology;

PDF: /pdf/npj-no33-2019/npj_no33_2019_034-046.pdf

Keywords: addiction; Internet dependence; adolescent Internet addiction; psychology of the Internet; adolescence; social networks;

Available Online 30.01.2019

Fig. 1. Frequency of using Internet services (2 hours or more every day, % of the respondents)

Table 1. Statistical indicators of scale points

 

Questionnaire Item

Mean

St. Dev.

R with total score

R time spent on the Internet

1

People around me tell me that I spend a lot of time on the Internet.

2.18

1.04

0.54

0.29**

2

I often feel that I am physically tired of being on the Internet for a long time.

2.14

0.99

0.12

0.06

3

I feel anxious if I have not been on the Internet for over an hour.

1.61

0.84

0.48

0.33**

4

Virtual life is more interesting to me than real life.

1.49

0.81

0.49

0.21**

5

I often forget to eat when I use the Internet.

1.31

0.67

0.45

0.16*

6

I prefer to sleep less in order to use more of the Internet.

1.43

0.68

0.42

0.18*

7

I usually keep back from my parents my real time on the Internet.

1.33

0.74

0.40

0.05

8

It makes me angry if someone distracts me while I am online.

1.53

0.76

0.60

0.20**

9

I spend most of my free time on the Internet.

2.25

1.00

0.54

0.33**

10

I like more to communicate with people on the Internet than in real life.

1.56

0.82

0.28

0.15

11

I tried to reduce time spent on the Internet.

2.30

0.99

0.11

0.13

12

I can sometimes postpone visiting the toilet when I find something interesting in the network.

1.29

0.62

0.38

0.15

13

It is difficult for me to plan my time on the Internet.

2.14

0.98

0.41

0.18*

14

I easily respond to requests and questions from my close relations if I am online.

1.72

0.94

0.23

0.13

15

I strictly plan the amount of time for the Internet. school and home affairs.

3.07

0.95

0.28

0.18*

16

If I have not been able to access the net for a long time it does not give me rest.

1.63

0.85

0.59

0.21*

17

I may not notice that for several hours I did not access the net.

1.98

0.99

0.47

0.23**

18

My mood is better when I am online.

2.01

0.84

0.52

0.27**

19

People around me exaggerate the negative impact of the Internet on me.

2.10

1.13

0.37

0.38**

20

I easily postpone a walk outside or going to the cinema in order to chat online.

1.21

0.62

0.42

0.14

21

Communication with friends in reality and online communication takes the same amount of time.

3.10

0.98

0.26

-0.23**

22

When I wake up the morning first of all I think about accessing the Internet.

2.24

1.11

0.43

0.28**

23

I trust friends in the network more than friends in real life.

1.17

0.53

0.38

0.28**

24

I usually hurry to do my homework quickly in order to be online.

1.77

0.96

0.42

0.21**

25

When I fall ill I have no desire to use the Internet.

2.82

1.08

0.21

0.22**

26

I get very angry when someone points out to me that I spend a lot of time on the Internet.

1.64

0.82

0.49

0.09

27

Using the Internet has a positive effect on my studies.

2.20

0.84

-0.06

-0.12

28

I like to access the Internet at night when nobody interferes.

2.12

1.15

0.48

0.33**

29

My physical health is not influenced if I am on the Internet for a long time.

2.30

1.03

0.03

-0.17

30

I feel sad if I have not accessed the net for a long time.

1.61

0.84

0.58

0.23**

31

I get bored if I have not accessed the net for a long time.

1.91

0.96

0.61

0.24**

32

I can forget about food if there is something interesting on the Internet.

1.29

0.67

0.44

0.13

33

I feel more confident when I am on the Internet.

1.59

0.79

0.55

0.23**

Table 2. Differences in problem use of the Internet

Statistics

Sample

High School Students

University Students

Females

Males

Mean

34.07

36.69

32.12

34.17

33.89

St. Dev.

9.97

9.48

9.55

10.08

9.29

N

150

64

86

93

57

T-criterion

 

2.91 ( p<0.01)

0.16 ( p>0.05)

Table 3. Differences in problem use of the Internet by category (%)

Category

Sample

High School Students

University Students

Females

Males

Norm

80.7

79.7

81.4

77.4

86.0

Risk Group

16.7

15.6

17.4

20.4

10.5

Problem use of the Internet

2.7

4.7

1.2

2.2

3.5

Table 4. Factor model of ‘problem use of the Internet’

Questionnaire Item

Components

1

2

3

4

5

People around me tell me that I spend a lot of time on the Internet.

 

 

 

.70

 

I feel anxious if I have not been on the Internet for over an hour.

.77

 

 

 

 

Virtual life is more interesting to me than real life.

 

 

 

 

.65

I often forget to eat when I use the Internet.

 

.51

 

 

.42

I prefer to sleep less in order to use more of the Internet.

 

.74

 

 

 

It makes me angry if someone distracts me while I am online.

 

.49

.49

 

 

I spend most of my free time on the Internet.

 

.64

 

 

 

It is difficult for me to plan my time on the Internet.

 

 

 

.74

 

If I have not been able to access the net for a long time it does not give me rest.

.71

 

 

 

 

I may not notice that for several hours I did not access the net.

.54

.44

 

 

 

My mood is better when I am online.

 

 

.69

 

 

People around me exaggerate the negative impact of the Internet on me.

 

 

 

.58

 

When I wake up the morning first of all I think about accessing the Internet.

.50

 

.41

 

 

I trust friends in the network more than friends in real life.

 

 

 

 

.79

I usually hurry to do my homework quickly in order to be online.

 

 

.71

 

 

I like to surf the Internet at night when nobody interferes.

 

.49

 

 

 

I feel bored if I have not accessed the net for a long time.

.67

 

 

 

 

I feel sad if I have not accessed the net for a long time.

.64

 

 

 

 

I feel more confident when I am on the Internet.

 

 

 

 

.40

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For citing this article:

Kolesnikov V.N., Melnik Yu.I., Teplova L.I. (2019). Internet activity and problematic Internet use in adolescence. National Psychological Journal, 1, 34-46

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