Problematic smartphone use and the quantity and quality of peer engagement among adolescents: A longitudinal study

Shuang Su, Helle Larsen, Janna Cousijn, Reinout W. Wiers, Regina J. J. M. Van den Eijnden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Problematic smartphone use (PSU) has recently attracted a lot of attention, especially among adolescents. The knowledge about the role peer engagement might play in the development of PSU is still limited. We aimed to investigate the bidirectional relationships between PSU, the quantity of online (i.e., passive and active social media messaging on smartphone) and offline peer engagement (i.e., intensity of face-to-face meeting with friends) and the quality of peer engagement (i.e., perceived competence in close friendships) among adolescents. Data from a three-wave longitudinal study among 2100 Dutch high school students (56.7% boys) was used. Cross-lagged models indicated that: (1) perceived competence in close friendships at T1 negatively predicted PSU at T2 and PSU at T2 negatively predicted perceived competence in close friendships at T3; (2) there were positive and reciprocal cross-lagged correlations between PSU and passive social media messaging on smartphone; (3) there were positive and reciprocal cross-lagged correlations between intensity of face-to-face meeting with friends and active social media messaging on smartphone. This implies that adolescents who perceive a low competence in close friendships and/or intensively check their smartphone for messages from their peers may be particularly vulnerable to developing problematic smartphone use over time.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107025
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
Volume126
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest. The first author is funded by China Scholarship Council (CSC) from the Ministry of Education of P.R. China.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Authors

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Problematic smartphone use and the quantity and quality of peer engagement among adolescents: A longitudinal study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this