Prevalence of internet addiction and its risk and protective factors in a representative sample of senior high school students in Taiwan (2017)

J Adolesc. 2017 Nov 14;62:38-46. doi: 10.1016/j.adolescence.2017.11.004.

Lin MP1, Wu JY2, You J3, Hu WH2, Yen CF4.


The aim of this study investigated the prevalence of Internet addiction (IA) in a large representative sample of secondary school students and identified the risk and protective factors. Using a crosssectional design, 2170 participants were recruited from senior high schools throughout Taiwan using both stratified and cluster sampling. The prevalence of IA was 17.4% (95% confidence interval, 15.8%-19.0%). High impulsivity, low refusal self-efficacy of Internet use, high positive outcome expectancy of Internet use, high disapproving attitude of Internet use by others, depressive symptoms, low subjective well-being, high frequency of others’ invitation to Internet use, and high virtual social support was all independently predictive in the logistic regression analysis. The prevalence of IA among secondary school students in Taiwan was high. Results from this study can be used to help educational agencies and mental health organizations create policies and design programs that will help in the prevention of IA in adolescents.

KEYWORDS: Adolescents; Internet addiction; Prevalence; Risk and protective factors

PMID: 29149653

DOI: 10.1016/j.adolescence.2017.11.004