Internet Behaviour Could Signal Depression In Students

Why Students' Internet Habits Could Reveal Depression

Researchers looking at the internet behaviour of students have correlated certain habits, such as jumping between applications, with depression.

According to a study by researchers at Missouri University of Science and Technology, 40% of American students now report incidences of depression while studying.

Using data collected from 216 consenting undergraduate students at Missouri University, the month-long experiment tracked peer-to-peer interaction, downloads, duration, chatroom usage, sharing, email checking and late-night activity.

According to Mashable the data showed that online peer-to-peer usage increased with depression.

“Subsequent analysis identified a number of fine grained Internet usage features that associate with depressive symptoms,” Sriram Chellappan, one of the study’s authors told Mashable.

“Such features may yield insights towards developing software for personalized, early, in-home and cost-effective mental health care.”

However, in this study websites visited were not accessed and researchers were not able to evaluate associations between visits to specific sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, with depressive symptoms.