Changing Unsafe Behaviour on Social Network Sites. Collaborative Learning vs. Individual Reflection



Recently, a lot of safety interventions have been developed about teenagers’ privacy and security on social network sites (SNSs). However, these interventions often do not have an impact on attitudes and behaviour. Possibly, the instructional principles that guided their development only lead to better knowledge-construction and are not adequate in changing reputation-related behaviour. Following the theory of planned behaviour and theories about peer pressure during adolescence, it was hypothesised that interventions emphasising collaborative learning are less effective in changing attitudes and behaviour than interventions emphasising individual reflection. A quasi-experimental intervention study using a pre-test post-test design was set up in 115 classes. It was found that both a course with collaborative learning and a course with individual reflection raised awareness about contact risks on SNSs. However, only a course with an emphasis on individual reflection had a consistent impact on attitudes and behaviour. Implications of these results are discussed.


Online risk Social network sites Secondary education Intervention study Collaborative learning Teenagers Prevention Safety Individual reflection 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Educational Studies & iMinds-MICTGhent UniversityGentBelgium
  2. 2.Department of Educational StudiesGhent UniversityGentBelgium

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