Date of Award

2017

Document Type

Thesis

First Advisor

James Morgan

Abstract

The present study seeks to analyze the impact of cyberaggression and positive feedback from an anonymous videogame player on one’s self-efficacy and performance both inside and outside of the videogame. The internet provides a unique way for individuals to interact, and the online disinhibition effect can lead users to engage in out of character behaviors once online. This shift in behavior can be an influencing factor for cyberbullying or isolated instances of cyberaggression. Negative feedback can lower one’s self-efficacy, and a lower self-efficacy can lead to a worse performance on the activity. It was hypothesized that mean comments from an anonymous competitor would lower self-efficacy both in the game and for an unrelated memory task, and similarly diminish the performance in both activities. It was also hypothesized that a positive comment after the first competition would both increase self-efficacy inside and outside the game and also improve performance on both activities. Participants in the present study took a memory test, played an online racing game, received predetermined feedback after losing the race, then played the videogame and took the memory test one final time, after rating their self-efficacy before every activity. It was discovered that the type of message received did not play a role on self-efficacy and performance both inside and outside of the videogame.

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