Social Media Addiction and Academic Adjustment: The Mediating or Moderating Effect of Grit Personality

Volume 7 - Issue 3
poh chua siah YiRong Brian Siew Zhi Yang Sai
Pages: 143-151 Download Count : 35 View Count: 36 DOI Number 10.17220/ijpes.2020.03.013 Facebook Share on Google+ Save to Zotero Save to Mendeley


The high attrition rate among Malaysian tertiary students have drawn the attention of educators and policy makers, and poor academic adjustment is regarded as one of the factors. Therefore, it is important to find out factors that are relevant to their poor academic adjustment so that intervention programs can be designed to improve their adjustment. Social media addiction and the grit personality have found to be significant factors that affect academic performance. However, it is not clear how the three variables interact with each other. Accordingly, this study adopts the essentialist and contextual perspectives to examine the relationships among these three variables, especially whether grit is a mediator or moderate for the relationship. 210 undergraduates were recruited by using the purposive sampling method and were asked to fill in a questionnaire. Partial Least Squares Structural Equation Modelling was used to analyze the data. The results showed that social media addiction is negatively associated with grit personality and academic adjustment, and grit is positively associated with academic adjustment. In addition, grit is a statistical mediator rather than a statistical moderator for the effect of social media addiction on academic lifestyle. The findings support the contextual perspective on personality that grit personality is a state that can be changed by certain social context. The findings reveal the importance of providing a positive social context for tertiary students who are undergoing a transition period, so that their grit personality can be developed and thus enhance their academic adjustment.


  • academic adjustment
  • social media addiction
  • grit
  • tertiary education
  • Malaysia
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