Having established the conception of digital competence consisting of four components (knowledge, skills, motivation and responsibility) implemented in four areas (content, communication, consumption, and the techno-sphere), we propose the idea of models of digital competence as a specific systems of adolescents’ beliefs about their abilities and desires in the online world. These models (1) may be realistic or illusory, (2) their development is mediated by the motivation and online activity and (3) they regulate further online activities as well as the further development of digital competence. On the basis of nationwide study of digital competence (N=1203 Russian adolescents of 12-17 years) using latent class method we revealed 5 models of digital competence corresponding to its lowest level, the average level at high and low motivation, high specific (in the components of skill and safety) and high general level. It has been shown that higher appraisal of their digital competence is related to the opportunity of a more prolonged and self-service access to the Internet as well as the history of independent development of skills online. The illusion of digital competence is associated with a wide but shallow exploration activities online. Motivational component is related to the participation and recognition of the role of others in the development of digital competence, in comparison with others’ online skills and knowledge, as well as subjectively lower «digital divide» with parents. We suggest that the motivational component of the digital competence is developed if adolescent has a successful interaction via Internet, learn from other people and also if the range of her activities and interests online activity involves and requires the development of new skills.
Based on digital competence model’s analysis, we have figured out 3 main types of Internet-users: (1) beginners, (2) experienced users, (3) advanced users. All these types fall into different risk groups, determined by variable possibilities of facing content-, communication-, technical- and customers- online-threats.
The paper researches the possibilities and limitations of coping behaviour in children and adolescents on the Internet and the assistance of significant adults (parental mediation) in the context of the new social situation of development mediated by modern information and communication technologies, in particular, by the Internet. The study based on the EUKidsOnline II project was conducted in 11 regions of 7 federal districts of Russia (1025 “parent-child” pairs).
According to the research results the most common risks include dealing with negative sexual content, fraud and identity theft, meetings with online friends. Features of experiences and coping with risks online depend on the adolescent dominating activity on the web: those focused on their studies are less exposed to the risks mentioned, whereas their feelings are deeper and more enduring, they more frequently seek solutions using passive strategies. Those who fall into “content consumers” category are most exposed to the risk of coming across sexual content on the web as actively use various Internet resources including search engines. They experience fewer negative emotions, more frequently they actively seek to solve the problem almost without offline support.
The opportunity of parental mediation at the present moment is rather insignificant: a strategy of prohibitions associated with reduction of collision risks especially for research of teenagers; while the strategy of positive reinforcement and explanation is used effectively with adolescents doing various things on the Internet, it can be associated with a more realistic risk assessment and child using active coping strategies and social support. According to the data received the Internet could be considered as a complex psychological “instrument” that is internalizing by the child in his/her development. This internalization process determines his/her activities and self-regulation including his/her aptitude to coping with difficult life situations.