Higher Education

, Volume 70, Issue 4, pp 711–723 | Cite as

Relationship between levels of problematic Internet usage and motivation to study in university students

  • Phil ReedEmail author
  • Emma Reay


This study explored the relationship between problematic levels of Internet use and motivation to study in a university sample. One hundred and sixty-two participants were recruited online and completed four questionnaires: Internet Addiction Test, Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, Emotional–Social Loneliness Scale, and the Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire. Participants’ scores were analysed to determine the presence of problematic levels of Internet use and any relationship between this factor and motivation to study. The results demonstrated that levels of problematic Internet use were negatively associated with several aspects of motivation to study (intrinsic goal orientation, control over learning, and learning self-efficacy). These relationships were over and above any impact that depression, anxiety, and social isolation had on motivation to study. The results suggest that increasing employment of digital learning technologies in higher education may be generating problems for some students, which may negatively impact their academic experience and outcomes in higher education.


Motivation to study Internet addiction Depression Anxiety Social isolation 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologySwansea UniversitySwanseaUK

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