Thursday 8 November 2012

Students' self-presentation on Facebook: An examination of personality and self-construal factors

Abstract The present research seeks to extend existing theory on self-disclosure to the online arena in higher educational institutions and contribute to the knowledge base and understanding about the use of a popular social networking site (SNS), Facebook, by college students. We conducted a non-experimental study to investigate how university students (N = 463) use Facebook, and examined the roles that personality and culture play in disclosure of information in online SNS-based environments. Results showed that individuals do disclose differently online vs. in-person, and that both culture and personality matter. Specifically, it was found that collectivistic individuals low on extraversion and interacting in an online environment disclosed the least honest and the most audience-relevant information, as compared to others. Exploratory analyses also indicate that students use sites such as Facebook primarily to maintain existing personal relationships and selectively used privacy settings to control their self-presentation on SNSs. The findings of this study offer insight into understanding college students' self-disclosure on SNS, add to the literature on personality and self-disclosure, and shape future directions for research and practice on online self-presentation. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Chen, B., & Marcus, J. (2012). Students' self-presentation on Facebook: An examination of personality and self-construal factors. Computers in Human Behavior, 28(6), 2091-2099. Fulltext accessible from the Science Direct database.

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