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Health Promotion Projects on Internet Addiction

Preventive programs on Internet Addiction among secondary school students

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Impact of primary prevention program

The primary prevention program involved 862 secondary 1-2 students, 57 parents and 16 teachers from 4 schools. The project team designed a teaching kit and a parental workshop manual based on research findings on relationships between constructs of the Health Belief Model (HBM) and IA and internet use. Skills in preventing and detecting children’s IA problems and providing support to children were covered in the parental workshop manual. Two class sessions for students were conducted by the teachers in class settings and a workshop was provided by trained teachers to parents. Training was provided to teachers to conduct the student sessions and parental workshop.

A total of 862 students participated in the two classes of the primary prevention program. The pre-program survey was collected before the program, while the post-program survey was collected after the program. A total of 779 completed set of data were collected. In addition, perceived impacts of primary intervention were collected from 16 teachers in the process evaluation survey of teacher training workshop and 3 in-depth interviews with the teacher in-charge.

Teaching kit: According to the process evaluation of teacher training workshop (n=16), all teachers (100%) strongly agree or agree the conceptual framework of the teaching kit is useful. All of them (100%) thought that the content of teaching kit is practical, is helpful to prevent students from internet addiction, and is able to promote students’ and parents’ knowledge on internet addiction. A teacher commented that the content of the teaching kit is rich and useful for them in preparing for the classes.

Teacher training workshop: All teachers (100%) were satisfied the arrangement of the training workshop. A teacher commented that half day training is appropriate. They can acquire new knowledge from the training workshop.

Impact of primary intervention: The primary intervention consisted of one parent workshop and two class sessions on internet addiction for students. A teacher reported that the parent workshop ran smoothly. They can provide information on internet addiction and relevant parenting skills to the parents. Another teacher found that the small sharing groups helped parents to handle their parenting concerns.

Regarding the two class sessions on internet addiction for students, improvement on students’ perceived benefit on reducing internet use was statistically significant (p<0.05) in paired t-test after completion of the intervention. 43% of participants had improved score on perceived benefit after completion of the intervention. 10 % of participants improved their intention to reduce internet use (i.e. from “not intend to change” to “intend to change”). 76% of participants maintained their intention to reduce internet use. In addition, 30%, 35%, 46% and 36% of participants had improved scores on perceived susceptibility of IA, perceived severity IA, perceived barriers, and cue to action respectively.

Impact of in-depth intervention program

The in-depth intervention program focused specifically on those students fulfilling the criteria – either 1) students who self-perceive as an IA case and intend to reduce internet use, or 2) students who are classified as IA by CIAS (score > 26) and intend to reduce internet IA use. This in-depth intervention program involved two components: mentorship and adventure-based activities. Students were divided in groups with assigned mentors who are volunteers from the Fire Services Department (in personal capacity). The mentors stationed in each school and participated in all four adventure-based activities.

A total of 118 students joined the in-depth intervention program with 16 trained mentors. On average, 92 students (78%) attended each of the four activities. A total of 84 completed set of data were collected for pre-program and post-program comparison. In addition, perceived impacts of program from students were collected in 4 in-depth interviews and 78 written feedbacks. One in-depth interview with parent, three in-depth interviews with teachers, and two focus groups with 10 mentors were conducted to obtain their perceived impacts of program on students.

Internet use: According to the worksheets collected in the last session, students perceived that they were able to find fun in the reality, while the internet is virtual world. They could control themselves to spend less time in the internet. 10 % of participants had lower score in CIAS (i.e. from “probable internet addiction” to “no internet addiction”). 69% of participants maintained their CIAS score as no internet addiction.

Academic aspiration: After participation of the program, some students were motivated to improve their academic performance, which is consistent with teacher’s observation. Students reported their goals that motivated them to work hard. In addition, students and teacher reported improvements in students’ academic performance. Among participants, 36% of them had higher score on academic aspiration.

Self-esteem: All teachers (100%) agreed that the program promote students’ self-esteem. Teacher reported that students’ experience and achievement in the program promote their overall evaluation to self, which is consistent to students’ feedbacks. 50% of participants had higher score on self-esteem.

Self-efficacy: All teachers (100%) agreed that the program promote students’ self-efficacy. Students had greater confidence on their skills (e.g. social, physical) and to complete tasks (e.g. high event). 58% of participants had higher score on self-efficacy.

Perceived social support: All teachers (100%) agree that the program promote students’ social support, and positive impact of fire services mentors on students’ personal growth. Teachers reported closed relationship between students and mentors, as well as positive role model of fire services mentors. Students also reported closed relationship with mentors, and guidance and care provided by mentors. In addition, students treasured team work with the group and peers. They perceived support and help from the team members. 32% of participants had higher score on perceived social support.

Perceived family support: Students reported that they understand parents better when mentors guided them to take parents’ perspective in communication. Students perceived more care from parents. They also shared their positive experiences of the program with their parents and received positive feedback. In addition, parents encouraged students to participate the activity rather than staying at home. 43 % of participants had higher score on perceived family support scales respectively.

Overall feedback: Students enjoyed the program and they reported sense of achievement and growth throughout the program. All teachers (100%) were satisfied with the in-depth intervention program, believed the program can help the students, and improved their confidence to handle students’ issues. Teachers found the screening survey useful in identifying students in need. They observed students’ motivation and talents throughout the program. Some of the schools planned to follow-up the students after the completion of the program. One of the schools organized a series of activities for the participants in the next academic year.

The way forward: All teachers (100%) supported to conduct the in-depth program continually. If there is continuation of program for next cohort, all teacher (100%) would support their school to participate in the in-depth intervention program again. Students and mentors also expressed their will to participate the in-depth intervention program in the future.

Funded by Knowledge Transfer Fund (Ref: KPF142ICF13)


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