Cyberloafing Behaviors among University Students: Their Relationships with Positive and Negative Affect

Metin-Orta, İrem
Demirtepe-Saygılı, Dilek
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Current Psychology
With the technological advances, the use of digital devices, such as laptops, tablets, or smartphones in the educational setting has become prevalent among young people. Accordingly, there has been an increased concern among scholars on students’ in-class Internet use for personal purposes; namely, ‘cyberloafing’. Considerable research has demonstrated the adverse effects of in-class Internet use on students’ learning environment and academic performance. The present study particularly investigates the relationship between cyberloafing behaviors and positive and negative affect among university students. It examines five different online activities including sharing, shopping, real-time updating, accessing online content, and gaming/gambling separately to gain greater insight into students’ cyberloafing behaviors. The sample consisted of 267 undergraduate students who filled out questionnaires measuring cyberloafing behaviors, positive and negative affect, and demographical information including the use of the Internet and mobile technologies. The initial analyses showed that male students had higher scores in shopping, accessing online content, and gaming/gambling than females. The latent variable analysis revealed that among different activities of cyberloafing, accessing online content and gaming/gambling were positively correlated with positive affect, while sharing was positively associated with negative affect among students. The findings emphasize the importance of evaluating cyberloafing as a part of students’ psychological well-being rather than a variable merely related to academic achievement. The findings of the study also enlighten researchers and educators in developing appropriate policies and interventions to manage misuse of the Internet in class.
Published by Current Psychology,, Irem Metin-Orta, Dilek Demirtepe-Saygılı, Department of Psychology, Atilim University, Kizilcasar Mahallesi, Incek, Golbasi, 06830, Ankara, Turkey.
Cyberloafing, Internet use, positive affect, negative affect, university students