Generalized problematic internet use and perfectionism in Portuguese university students

B. Rodrigues Maia, M. J. Soares, A. T. Pereira, M. Marques, F. Carvalho, A. Macedo

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting Abstractpeer-review



Introduction: Although there are several empirical studies exploring the relationship between problematic Internet use and personality traits, few had considered perfectionism. Objectives: To explore the association between generalized problematic Internet use and perfectionism. Methods: A sample of 433 Portuguese university students (Mage = 20.15 years, SD = 1.77, range = 18-25 years) completed the Generalized Problematic Internet Use Scale 2/GPIU and the Multidimensional Perfectionism Composite Scale – short version.
Results: GPIU total score (rs=.16**), Mood Regulation (rs=.22**), and Deficient Self-Regulation (rs=.13**) were correlated with Positive Striving factor. GPIU total score (rs=.38**), Preference for Online Social Interaction (rs=.16**), Mood Regulation (rs=.28**), Deficient Self-Regulation (rs = .33**), and Negative Consequences (rs=.41**) were significantly correlated with Evaluative Concerns factor. A one-way between groups analysis of variance was conducted to explore the relation between GPIU and perfectionism. Subjects were divided into three groups according to their GPIU risk levels (Group1:low-risk; Group2:medium-risk; Group3:high-risk). There was a statistically difference at p >.05 level in Positive Striving scores for the three risk level groups: F (2,430)=4.39, p=.013, and in Evaluative Concerns scores, F (2,430)=28.83, p=<.001. Post-hoc comparisons using the Tukey USD test, for Positive Striving, indicated that the mean score for Group1 (M=39.21, SD=8.56) was significantly different from Group3 (M=43.69, SD=9.74). Considering Evaluative Concerns, the mean score for Group1 (M=39.86, SD=11.31) was significantly different from Group2 (M=46.91, SD=11.42) and from Group3 (M=51.75, SD=8.54). Conclusions: GPIU is consistently related to maladaptive perfectionism. Future longitudinal studies are needed to clarify the bidirectional association between GPIU and perfectionism traits.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S444-S444
Number of pages1
JournalEuropean Psychiatry
Publication statusPublished - 13 Aug 2021


  • Problematic internet use
  • Perfectionism
  • University students


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