ISSN Print: 2472-9450  ISSN Online: 2472-9469
International Journal of Psychology and Cognitive Science  
Manuscript Information
Relationship Between the Constructs of Problematic Internet Use and Facebook Addiction
International Journal of Psychology and Cognitive Science
Vol.5 , No. 3, Publication Date: Jul. 30, 2019, Page: 116-120
217 Views Since July 30, 2019, 115 Downloads Since Jul. 30, 2019

Hugo Rafael de Souza e Silva, Medical Sciences College, University of Pernambuco (UPE), Recife, Brazil.


Pauliana Valéria Machado Galvão, School of Medicine (Serra Talhada Campus), Universidade de Pernambuco (UPE), Serra Talhada, Brazil.


Mateus Mourato Barros, School of Medicine (Serra Talhada Campus), Universidade de Pernambuco (UPE), Serra Talhada, Brazil.


Kelsy Catherina Nema Areco, Health Informatics Department, Federal University of São Paulo (Unifesp), São Paulo, Brazil.


Thiago Marques Fidalgo, Psychiatry and Medical Psychology Department, Federal University of São Paulo (Unifesp), São Paulo, Brazil.


Dartiu Xavier da Silveira, Psychiatry and Medical Psychology Department, Federal University of São Paulo (Unifesp), São Paulo, Brazil.


Background: Since the first description on Problematic Internet Use (PIU), several other descriptions of additive behaviors related to the Internet have appeared in the scientific literature. However, there are always questions about being the same construct. Aim: This study aimed to examine the discriminant validity and overlap between the constructs PIU and Facebook Addiction (FA). Methods: For this, 356 undergraduate students from the health area were interviewed, of which 271 (75.4%) were female, with a mean age of 19.47 years (± 2.32 years). A socio-demographic characterization questionnaire and habits of use of internet and social networks and the Portuguese (Brazil) versions of the Online Cognition Scale (OCS-BR), Internet Addiction Test (IAT-BR) and BFAS -BR) were applied. The discriminant validity between the PIU and FA constructs was verified through the Modeling of Structural Equations (MSE). Results: We found the factorial model presented satisfactory adjustment quality χ2/df = 4, GFI = 0.93, CFI = 0.94 and RMSEA = 0.09 and correlation between constructs was equal to 0.88. Average extracted variances (AVE) – AVEPIU and AVEFA – were smaller than the squared correlation between the two constructs, indicating that there is no evidence of discriminant validity between PIU and FA constructs. Conclusion: the results support the hypothesis that Problematic Internet Use and Facebook Addiction are the same theoretical latent construct, that is, they are part of the same clinical entity and that there must be a second order factor, Technological Dependency.


Addictive Behavior, Psychometrics, Cross-cultural Comparison, Validation Studies


Carbonell X, Guardiola E, Beranuy M, Bellés A. A bibliometric analysis of the scientific literature on Internet, video games, and cell phone addiction. J Med Libr Assoc. 2009; 97 (2): 102–7.


Pezoa-Jares RE, Espinoza-Luna IL, Medina JAV. Internet Addiction: A Review. J Addict Res Ther. 2012; S6 (0): 1–10.


Laconi S, Rodgers RF, Chabrol H. The measurement of Internet addiction: A critical review of existing scales and their psychometric properties. Comput Hum Behav. 2014; 41: 190–202.


Kuss DJ, Griffiths MD. Online social networking and addiction—a review of the psychological literature. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2011; 8 (9): 3528–3552.


Griffiths MD. Facebook addiction: Concerns, criticism, and recommendations - A response to Andreassen and colleagues. Psychol Rep. 2012; 110 (2): 518–20.


Larose R, Kim J-H, Peng W. Social networking: Addictive, compulsive, problematic, or just another media habit? In: A networked self: Identify, community, and culture on social network stes,. New York: Taylor & Francis; 2010.


Lee ZWY, Cheung CMK, Thadani DR. An Investigation into the Problematic Use of Facebook. In: Proceedings of the 45th Hawaii International Conference on System Science [Internet]. IEEE; 2012 [citado 19 de fevereiro de 2018]. p. 1768–76. Disponível em:


Balakrishnan V, Shamim A. Malaysian Facebookers: Motives and addictive behaviours unraveled. Comput Hum Behav. 2013; 29 (4): 1342–9.


Zaremohzzabieh Z, Samah B, Omar S, Bolong J, Kamarudin N. Addictive Facebook use among university students. Asian Soc Sci. 2014; 10 (6): 107–16.


Kuss DJ, Griffiths MD. Excessive online social networking: Can adolescents become addicted to Facebook? Educ Health. 2011; 29 (4): 68–71.


Caplan SE. Theory and measurement of generalized problematic Internet use: A two-step approach. Comput Hum Behav. 2010; 26 (5): 1089–97.


Ryan T, Chester A, Reece J, Xenos S. The uses and abuses of Facebook: A review of Facebook addiction. J Behav Addict. 2014; 3 (3): 133–48.


Király O, Griffiths MD, Urbán R, Farkas J, Kökönyei G, Elekes Z, et al. Problematic internet use and problematic online gaming are not the same: findings from a large nationally representative adolescent sample. Cyberpsychology Behav Soc Netw. 2014; 17 (12): 749–54.


Silva HR de S, Areco KCN, Bandiera-Paiva P, Galvão PVM, Garcia AN de M, Silveira DX da. Avaliação da equivalência semântica da versão em português (Brasil) da Online Cognition Scale. Cad Saúde Pública. 2014; 30 (6): 1327–34.


Silva HR de S e, Areco KCN, Bandiera-Paiva P, Galvão PVM, Garcia AN de M, Silveira DX da. Equivalência semântica e confiabilidade da versão em português da Bergen Facebook Addiction Scale. J Bras Psiquiatr. 2015; 64 (1): 17–23.


Conti MA, Jardim AP, Hearst N, Cordás TA, Tavares H, Abreu CN de. Evaluation of semantic equivalence and internal consistency of a Portuguese version of the Internet Addiction Test (IAT). Rev Psiquiatr Clin. 2012; 39 (3): 106–10.


Davis RA, Flett GL, Besser A. Validation of a New Scale for Measuring Problematic Internet Use: Implications for Pre-employment Screening. Cyberpsychol Behav. 2002; 5 (4): 331–45.


Andreassen CS, Torsheim T, Brunborg GS, Pallesen S. Development of a Facebook Addiction Scale. Psychol Rep. 2012; 110 (2): 501–17.


Widyanto L, McMurran M. The psychometric properties of the internet addiction test. Cyberpsychol Behav. 2004; 7 (4): 443–50.


Anderson JC, Gerbing DW. Structural equation modeling in practice: A review and recommended two-step approach. Psychol Bull. 1988; 103 (3): 411.


Marôco J. Análise de equações estruturais: Fundamentos teóricos, software & aplicações. 1st ed. Lisboa: ReportNumber; 2010.


Hair JF, Black WC, Babin BJ, Anderson RE, Tathan RL. Multivariate data analysis. 6th ed. New York: J. Wiley; 2009.


Fornell C, Larcker DF. Evaluating structural equation models with unobservable variables and measurement error. J Mark Res. 1981; 39–50.


MacKenzie SB, Podsakoff PM, Jarvis CB. The problem of measurement model misspecification in behavioral and organizational research and some recommended solutions. J Appl Psychol. 2005; 90 (4): 710.


Davis RA. A cognitive-behavioral model of pathological Internet use. Comput Hum Behav. 2001; 17 (2): 187–95.


Anastasi A. Psychological testing. Oxford, England: Macmillan; 1954.

  Join Us
  Join as Reviewer
  Join Editorial Board