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Title: Impact of ICT and social networks on students: An analysis of gender-based attitudinal profiles
Authors: Mulero Henríquez, Itahisa 
Pérez Solís, María Del Rocío 
Falcón Pulido, Samuel 
UNESCO Clasification: 6114 Psicología social
630707 Tecnología y cambio social
Keywords: Secondary education
Social networks
Issue Date: 2023
Journal: Education and Information Technologies 
Abstract: High levels of Internet usage are prevalent among young people. Alongside this increased use, dangerous attitudes and practices among students have been observed. This study aimed to analyse the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) among high school students, their attitudes, and the relationship with gender. A sample of 869 participants aged 11 to 18 was selected, and we developed the Internet Use and Attitudes Scale for Virtual Social Networks (VSN). This scale comprises subscales assessing VSN dependence, parental control, enhancement of social relationships, and engagement in violent behaviour and consumption of inappropriate content. After validating this scale, we employed latent profile analysis to discern unique behavioural and attitudinal profiles among the students. The analysis yielded three distinct groups. The majority (66%) fell into the “Positive Attitude” group (52% female, 48% male). The “Negative Attitude” group represented 29% (49.5% female, 50.5% male), and the “Dangerous Attitude” group comprised 5% (28.3% female, 71.7% male). The “Dangerous Attitude” profile exhibited the highest levels of VSN dependency, violence, and inappropriate content consumption. Males were overrepresented in this category. These findings provide greater insight into problematic Internet use among students, revealing gender disparities. Males were more likely to engage in dangerous online activities like cyberbullying and accessing inappropriate content. Targeted interventions addressing negative attitudes and violent cyberbehaviours are needed, especially for male students. This research enriches our understanding of youth’s online habits, attitudes, and risks.
ISSN: 1360-2357
DOI: 10.1007/s10639-023-12211-8
Source: Education and Information Technologies [1360-2357], 21 september 2023
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