Presentation Title

Social Media Conformity and Self Esteem Among College Students

Start Date

April 2020

End Date

April 2020

Major Field of Study

Psychology

Student Type

Undergraduate - Honors

Faculty Mentor(s)

William Phillips, PhD

Presentation Format

Poster Presentation

Abstract/Description

Social pressure, group influence, and conformity has historically been researched in the physical presence of the influencer(s). The present study examines the conformative influence of majority in the context of social media ‘liking’ on Instagram amongst college students; and the relationship between likelihood to conform and self esteem. Researchers have studied how social pressures from a majority group would influence an individual’s conformity, found that ¾ of the participants conformed with the majority. Others investigated self esteem and conformity showing negative correlation between conformity and self esteem. The present study will look at conformity in the lens of social media. Research of social media conformity has shown that young adults (particularly females) who spend more time on social media have low self esteem. Eighty participants between 18-45y/o will participate in a questionnaire measuring Instagram usage, self esteem, Instagram ‘liking’ patterns via faux Instagram posts with randomly assigned high/low ‘likes’ and, conformity through to social pressure. Based on findings in social media usage and self esteem, it is predicted that individuals who conform to ‘liking’ a popular post will have low self esteem. An Instagram post with a high number of ‘likes’ will be less likely ‘ignored’. This is hypothesized to be more likely to occur for females. The present study is aimed to offer insight into the influence that (high/low) ‘likes’ have on social media users for marketers, influencers, and social media users alike.

Comments

This presentation was accepted for the Scholarly and Creative Works Conference at Dominican University of California. The Conference was canceled due to the Covid-19 Pandemic

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Social Media Conformity and Self Esteem Among College Students

Social pressure, group influence, and conformity has historically been researched in the physical presence of the influencer(s). The present study examines the conformative influence of majority in the context of social media ‘liking’ on Instagram amongst college students; and the relationship between likelihood to conform and self esteem. Researchers have studied how social pressures from a majority group would influence an individual’s conformity, found that ¾ of the participants conformed with the majority. Others investigated self esteem and conformity showing negative correlation between conformity and self esteem. The present study will look at conformity in the lens of social media. Research of social media conformity has shown that young adults (particularly females) who spend more time on social media have low self esteem. Eighty participants between 18-45y/o will participate in a questionnaire measuring Instagram usage, self esteem, Instagram ‘liking’ patterns via faux Instagram posts with randomly assigned high/low ‘likes’ and, conformity through to social pressure. Based on findings in social media usage and self esteem, it is predicted that individuals who conform to ‘liking’ a popular post will have low self esteem. An Instagram post with a high number of ‘likes’ will be less likely ‘ignored’. This is hypothesized to be more likely to occur for females. The present study is aimed to offer insight into the influence that (high/low) ‘likes’ have on social media users for marketers, influencers, and social media users alike.