Abstract

The current study explored the relationship between problematic internet use (PIU) and motivation to learn, and examined psychological and social factors mediating this relationship. Two hundred and eighty-five students in an Italian University were recruited for the current study. There was a negative relationship between PIU and motivation to study: a negative impact on learning strategies, meaning that the students found it harder to organize their learning productively; and PIU also positively associated with test anxiety. The current results also demonstrated that there was partial mediation of this effect of PIU on learning strategies in terms of loneliness. This suggest at those with high levels of PIU may be particularly at risk from lower motivations to study, and, hence, lower actual generalized academic performance due to a number of consequences of PIU.


Authors

Truzoli, Roberto;  Vigano, Caterina;  Galmozzi, Paolo Gabriele;  Reed, Phil

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  • pre-publication peer review (FINAL ROUND)
    Decision Letter
    2019/11/20

    20-Nov-2019


    Dear Prof. Reed:


    JCAL-19-255.R1 "Problematic internet use and study motivation in higher education"


    Thank you for this resubmission. I have looked again at the manuscript, noting your responses to the reviews. The reviewers have been given an opportunity to see this re-submission. They are satisfied that their concerns have been met and do not wish to provide further advice or feedback that would delay publication of the paper.


    I am therefore very pleased to accept the manuscript for publication in JCAL.


    Congratulations!


    My colleague Ivy Rose Fernandico (email:JCALedoffice@wiley.com) will contact you again with further details of the procedure from here and, later, a Wiley colleague will deal with production matters. It is hard to predict exactly which issue it will appear in, although our ambition is to keep acceptance-to-printing waits as short as possible.


    In order to make the research we publish in the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning more accessible to the non-expert or lay reader the Editors of the Journal have decided that all manuscripts should also include a “Practitioner Notes” section outlining - in bullet point form - what is currently known about the subject matter, what their paper adds to this, and finally the implications of study findings for practitioners. Please aim to contribute no more than four bullet points per section of approximately 80 characters (i.e., one full sentence) in order to maintain clarity. For more information on this outreach initiative please read Gunter C, Osterrieder A. Genome Biol. 2012 Aug 31;13(8):168. “A modest proposal for an outreach section in scientific publications” (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3491364/).


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    Thank you again for submitting your work to JCAL. We look forward to seeing it in print shortly.


    Best wishes


    Prof. Paul Kirschner
    Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Computer Assisted Learning


    Reviewer(s)' Comments to Author:
    Reviewer: 1


    Comments to the Author
    The authors are to be commended for quality of their paper. Reviewers suggestions have been addressed and the paper is well written and just about ready for publication.


    The only very minor problem found - page 11, around line 42, the sentence commencing 'A Sobel test ... ' does not read as well as it could - there appears to be some words missing


    Reviewer: 2


    Comments to the Author
    Thank you for the updates and improvements the authors have made.  However, I do have a comment/question about "learning strategies". Please explain what are these strategies and s your discussion is not about "learning strategies" and PIU relation, then would it be better to just use "learning" instead of "learning strategies". For me, as a reader, it would be clearer.
    In general, I appreciate what has been done and I believe that new developments in the paper give wider ground for further discussions around problematic internet use.


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    Reviewer report
    2019/11/19

    Thank you for the updates and improvements the authors have made.  However, I do have a comment/question about "learning strategies". Please explain what are these strategies and s your discussion is not about "learning strategies" and PIU relation, then would it be better to just use "learning" instead of "learning strategies". For me, as a reader, it would be clearer.
    In general, I appreciate what has been done and I believe that new developments in the paper give wider ground for further discussions around problematic internet use.

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    Reviewer report
    2019/11/13

    The authors are to be commended for quality of their paper. Reviewers suggestions have been addressed and the paper is well written and just about ready for publication.

    The only very minor problem found - page 11, around line 42, the sentence commencing 'A Sobel test ... ' does not read as well as it could - there appears to be some words missing

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    Author Response
    2019/10/17

    Please find attached a revised manuscript entitled: “Problematic internet use and study motivation in higher education” (Manuscript ID JCAL-19-255). On its first review, the Reviewers were supportive, but also raised some areas that required clarification and development. You suggested that the paper has potential to be published, but needed revisions. We feel that we have been able to deal with the Reviewers requests, as outlined below, and as shown in red in the manuscript. In particular, we have added material to the Introduction to clarify and support the rationale. We have clarified aspects of the procedures, as requested. We also have developed the Discussion, although we have been careful not to be overly speculative.


    Reviewer 1:
    The authors need to revise the introduction so that it is very clear as to the expected contribution of the study. This should include a stronger argument as to why the study is necessary.
     We have highlighted, throughout the Introduction, the key objectives of the current study, and have related these to gaps in the current literature and knowledge base.


    The study appears to have discarded responses were the students did not spend more than 50% of their ‘internet time’ on one specific activity – this is reported as 17% of participants, hence a material proportion of the sample. A lack of a reasonable justification for this action (other than methodological expedience) means that the study is flawed and the results (given the material % of responses discarded) is unreliable / highly skewed and brings into question the validity of the results. The authors need to explain why these responses were discarded and provide specific and credible support from the literature that justifies this action.
     This is not the case, these students were simply unable to give one specific reason why they used the internet – presumably because they used the internet for lots of reasons, and their data was certainly not excluded from the study. It just means we are unable to easily categorise their usage, and we have tried to clarify this in the Method section.


    The research question is not clearly stated. The reviewer was expecting the introduction section to conclude with a definitive statement of the research questions (or even the research problem).

     We have attempted to make the research question more specific at the end of the Introduction section.


    The authors need to review each of the key concepts used in the paper and consider whether they are adequately explained – this is especially the case for PIU – which needs to be better defined and explained.
     We have provided a description of Problematic Internet Use, and clarified other concepts throughout the Introduction.


    For a paper that is highly quantitative, too much use of vague terminology is made – for example the opening paragraph of the paper uses the phrase “.. has been a subject of concern for a long time” – it is unclear what the authors mean by long term – 5 years, 10 year etc? The authors need to review the paper for vague terminology and replace such vagueness with specifics and more precise language where appropriate.
     We have clarified any terms that appeared vague.


    There is a considerable lack of detail about how the student for the study were recruited and the authors need to explain the mode of recruitment and provide justification for that recruitment. Hopefully the students did not complete the study as part of a class exercise that that would bring into question the validity of the study.
     We have clarified that the students were volunteers who responded to advertisments regarding the study. This was not part of a class exercise.


    The authors need to sharpen up there explanation of the events (as set out in the procedure section) and be more specific about the sequence of events etc.
     We have given more detail in the Procedure section.


    There is lack of detail as to the form of the questions – ie the authors say they asked the student how much time they spent on the internet – were the students advised what this included?
     We have provided further detail about the nature of these questions, and included a discussion of the ways of measuring this usage in the Discussion section relating to future research.


    There is a lack of explanation of relevance of the findings. Similar to contribution, the authors do not provide a sufficient discussion of the relevance of this study.
     We have expanded the Discussion to relate the findings to the possible mechanisms of action of PIU on motivation to learn, and have made some practical suggestions.


    Reviewer 2:
    1) Please check your references (e.g. Lepp et al., 2014 is missing).
     The reference has been added.


    2) Which "cognitive skills" are meant then stating that PIU will have an impact on them?
     We have clarified this, and given examples, in the Introduction and in the Discussion sections.


    3) I would appreciate having a description/definition of PIU, in order to understand at what level we can say "using the internet is problematic?"
     We have provided a description of Problematic Internet Use.


    4) How to interpret "PIU as the negative impact on the ability to study" and how it supports your findings?
     We have expanded the discussion of the relationship between these PIU-related cognitive abilities and motivation to learn, while trying not to be overly speculative.


    6) How much time students had for answering questionnaires?
     We have clarified that the participants did not have a time limit to complete the questionnaires, but that it typically took about 20-30 min per participant.


    We hope that these are the sorts of changes that you had in mind, and would be grateful if you could reconsider the manuscript for publication in the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning.



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  • pre-publication peer review (ROUND 1)
    Decision Letter
    2019/09/23

    23-Sep-2019


    Dear Prof. Reed:


    I am writing in relation to your submission of the Manuscript ID JCAL-19-255 entitled "Problematic internet use and study motivation in higher education" to the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning.


    I have now received feedback from two referees. Their reviews may be found at the bottom of this mailing - although we do sometimes note further comments and advice that might be privately addressed by referees to the Editor. I hope you find the reviews useful. I too have looked at the paper myself and I concur with the remarks that the referees make. You will see that, broadly, they are supportive but they are also critical. I have taken their overall recommendation to be that the paper has potential to be published but it would need revisions and a resubmission before this was appropriate. I am therefore advising that you consider this course of action.


    I hope you will consider revisiting the paper and addressing the comments that are made in these reviews. If you re-submit I would involve our referees again in making a final decision which, of course, at this stage I can not predict. However, we do endeavour to reach these conclusions as speedily as possible. Please let my colleague Ivy Rose Fernandico (email JCALedoffice@wiley.com) know your intentions in relation to this possible course of action.


    You will be unable to make your revisions on the originally submitted version of the manuscript. Instead, revise your manuscript offline using a word processing programme and save it on your computer. Please also highlight the changes to your manuscript within the document by using the track changes mode in MS Word or by using bold or coloured text. Once the revised manuscript is prepared, you can upload it to our online submission site.


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    Please include with the resubmission a file which contains a full list of the various challenges and suggestions that have been raised by reviewers and/or by myself as Editor. Each item in this list should have attached to it your reaction as implemented in the new manuscript draft. In short, the accompanying file should allow you to declare, locate and explain the edits that you have made in the manuscript. For reviewer comments that have not lead to a change in the manuscript, please include some indication of your reasons for maintaining the status quo. In other words, if you are uneasy about responding to any of the present editorial advice, you should indicate the nature of your reservations.


    Editors are inevitably concerned to protect space in a journal. I should remind you that our recommended length window for single empirical studies is between 4000 and 7000 words. While I do not believe in slavishly following these suggestions, I do feel that economy of writing is usually going to be important in determining whether a paper has impact. I would therefore urge you to carry out any edits with careful attention to the overall balance and length of the text. This may require considering deletions as well as insertions.


    May I also draw your attention to our willingness to publish material that is supplementary to a published report? Such material might include Tables and Figures but also sound and video files. We are able to do this when the material makes a useful elaboration of the published paper although it was not considered necessary to make the main scientific point. Further details are given at this link:
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    Please take this opportunity to check that your paper meets the journal’s style requirements and standards, in particular that the references are listed in the text and at the end of the paper in APA style. Failure to do so will result in delays in publication, should your paper be accepted. Please see http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/(ISSN)1365-2729/homepage/ForAuthors.html for further details.


    We are trying to facilitate speedy publication of manuscripts submitted to the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning so we ask you to upload your revised manuscript as soon as possible. If it will not be possible for you to submit your revision within two months please contact Ivy Rose Fernandico. Liesbeth is also happy to help if you have any other queries.


    Once again, thank you for submitting your manuscript to the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning and I look forward to receiving your revision.


    Yours sincerely,
    Prof. Paul Kirschner
    Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Computer Assisted Learning


    Reviewer(s)' Comments to Author:
    Reviewer: 1


    Comments to the Author
    see attached file


    Reviewer: 2


    Comments to the Author
    The study addresses an important issue in dealing with problematic internet use and its relation to learning at different perspectives.
    Comments1) Please check your references (e.g. Lepp et al.,2014 is missing).2) Which "cognitive skills" are meant then stating that PIU will have an impact on them?3) I would appreciate having a description/definition of PIU, in order to understand at what level we can say "using the internet is problematic?" Some example cases would help.4) How to interpret "PIU as the negative impact on the ability to study" and how it supports your findings?5) Materials are listed and described but so clearly linked with the study aims. Maybe a scheme would help to visualize why and what role each material had in this study.6) How much time students had for answering questionnaires?

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    Reviewer report
    2019/09/23

    The study addresses an important issue in dealing with problematic internet use and its relation to learning at different perspectives.
    Comments1) Please check your references (e.g. Lepp et al.,2014 is missing).2) Which "cognitive skills" are meant then stating that PIU will have an impact on them?3) I would appreciate having a description/definition of PIU, in order to understand at what level we can say "using the internet is problematic?" Some example cases would help.4) How to interpret "PIU as the negative impact on the ability to study" and how it supports your findings?5) Materials are listed and described but so clearly linked with the study aims. Maybe a scheme would help to visualize why and what role each material had in this study.6) How much time students had for answering questionnaires?

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    Reviewer report
    2019/08/23

    see attached file

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