Association between Internet Overuse and Aggression in Korean Adolescents (2013)

Pediatr Int. 2013 Jun 30. doi: 10.1111/ped.12171.

Kim K.


Department of Communication, Honam University Gwangsan Campus Eodeungno 330, Gwangsan-gu, Gwangju, 506-090, Korea.



The purpose of this study was to examine the association between Internet overuse and aggression.


A total of 2,336 (boys, 57.5%; girls, 42.5%) high school students in South Korea completed the structured questionnaire. The severity of Internet overuse was evaluated using Young’s Internet Addiction Test. Aggression was measured using the Aggression Questionnaire, a modified hostility inventory by Buss and Perry.


The proportions of boys who were classified as severe addicts and moderate addicts were 2.5% and 53.7%, respectively. For girls, the corresponding proportions were 1.9% and 38.9%, respectively. MANOVA results for univariate analysis showed that gender, duration of Internet use, most frequently used Internet activities, level of Internet addiction, smoking, alcohol, and caffeine were significantly associated with aggression scores. From multivariate analysis, it was found that smoking, alcohol, and level of Internet addiction were independently associated with all aggressive characteristics. Internet addiction scores were also significantly associated with all aggression scores from simple and multiple linear regression analyses (parameter estimate = 0.54∼0.58 for total aggression). Pearson correlation results showed that Internet addiction scores revealed the highest correlation coefficients with aggression among internet-related factors, age, and gender. Severe Internet-addicted boys showed higher scores in all aggression characteristics than severe Internet-addicted girls, even though it was not statistically significant in every characteristic. However, there was no gender effect on the association between internet overuse and aggression.


This study shows that Internet overuse is strongly associated with aggression in adolescents.

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