Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Effects of Technology on Self-Esteem

On my last blog, I wrote about an article that studied the effects of technology on race, gender, and self-esteem. To continue on with that discussion, I will explain how self-esteem specifically is affected by technology and how it in turn affects psychology.

Being that my topic is psychology, it can be fairly obvious how self-esteem affects psychology. Psychology deals mostly with the study of mental capabilities. When a person's self-esteem is high, it has significant effects that are different than from a person with low self-esteem. A person with high self-esteem generally live a happier life with a desire to accomplish their goals and to keep an active social life. On the contrary, a person with low self-esteem has a more difficult time making friends and do not have a high respect for themselves.

An example of how technology affects self-esteem can be found in the article, "Self-Concept, Self-Esteem, Gender, Race, and Information Technology Use." They did a study using video games and found that they caused lower behavioral self-concept and lower self-esteem. This may be due to the fact that most video games have some degree of violence, which could leave psychological effects on the person.

On the brighter side, technology could have positive effects on a person's self-esteem. According to "Effects of Technology on Classrooms and Students" (http://www2.ed.gov/pubs/EdReformStudies/EdTech/effectsstudents.html#increased) some teachers reposted an increase in self-esteem in students who were engaged in technology. Some students felt a "sense of empowerment" and "increased competence" after mastering some technological tasks. This could be true considering that technological devices today can be complicated, yet incredible in how they make things easier for our society.

In addition, the first article mentioned earlier stated that females were found to have a higher social-concept after using the internet. Because of this increase in social abilities, the internet could help women with their self-esteem by allowing them to socialize with others. More social networks=higher self-esteem.

As you can see, technology can certainly affect a person's self-esteem, thus affecting a person's psychological being. It is important to note that although technology can be fun and rewarding to use, a person must realize that technology can have both positive and negative effects.

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