MOBILE SOCIAL WORK

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Friendship 2.0: Adolescents’ experiences of belonging and self-disclosure online – Science Direct.com – Journal of Adolescence

ScienceDirect.com - Journal of Adolescence - Friendship 2.0: Adolescents' experiences of belonging and self-disclosure online

Abstract

This study explores the role that digital media technologies play in adolescents’ experiences of friendship and identity. The author draws on findings from in-depth interviews with 32 adolescents (15 girls, 17 boys) ages 13–18 (M = 15.5 years) attending one of seven secondary schools in Bermuda. The adolescents were asked to describe the nature of their online exchanges with friends and the value they ascribe to these conversations. A thematic analysis of their responses revealed that online peer communications promote adolescents’ sense of belonging and self-disclosure, two important peer processes that support identity development during adolescence. At the same time, the unique features of computer-mediated communication shape adolescents’ experiences of these processes in distinct ways. Gender and age differences show that adolescents’ online peer communications are not uniform; the characteristics that distinguish adolescents offline also shape their online activities.

Keywords

Adolescence; Identity; Friendships; Digital media; Internet

via ScienceDirect.com – Journal of Adolescence – Friendship 2.0: Adolescents’ experiences of belonging and self-disclosure online.

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Lutz Siemer

Lutz Siemer

Education, Research & Development in Social Work & IT After working as an alternative practitioner and psychotherapist in private practice for nearly ten years I stepped over to higher education in 2005. At Saxion University of Applied Sciences I lecture and do research and development in the area of Social Work, Psychology and IT. Currently I'm focussing on merging mobile technology and social work.

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