Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 24, Issue 8, pp 2301–2309 | Cite as

Addictive Internet Use and Parenting Patterns Among Secondary School Students in Guangzhou and Hong Kong

  • Chau-kiu CheungEmail author
  • Xiao Dong Yue
  • Dennis Sing-wing Wong
Original Paper


Parenting can possibly prevent addictive Internet use among schoolchildren. To explore such a possibility, this study surveyed 1,771 secondary school students (Grades 10 and 11) in Guangzhou and Hong Kong about their addictive Internet use and the parenting style they experienced. Five distinguishable patterns emerged from the cluster analysis of three parenting styles, permissive, authoritarian, and flexible parenting. The “high or inconsistent” parenting pattern, which attained high scores in all three parenting styles, exhibited the least degree of addictive Internet use among the students. By contrast, authoritarian parenting pattern resulted in the highest level of addictive Internet use. The variation caused by the parenting patterns far exceeded that caused by parenting styles. The results indicate that balanced parenting will most likely prevent students’ addictive Internet use.


Addictive Internet use Parenting pattern Parenting style Social control 



This research was funded by a Grant from the City University of Hong Kong (Grant No. 9610206). The authors wish to thank Zhining Li of the Middle School affiliated with South China Normal University Guangzhou for helping with data collection in Guangzhou.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chau-kiu Cheung
    • 1
    Email author
  • Xiao Dong Yue
    • 1
  • Dennis Sing-wing Wong
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Applied Social StudiesCity University of Hong KongHong KongChina

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