Computer addiction and computer literacy: two sides of the same process



The article provides evidence that the educational system at its current state is not able to adequately perceive the intervention of informational computer technologies and utilize them, as well as clearly differentiate types and risks of the so-called computer addiction. So far, education hasn’t developed a clear view of the role these technologies play in educational process, it only notifies their ambiguity for teaching different subjects. It means that humanity is still in search of the new approaches, being under the pressure of the old paradigms in education. It is especially obvious in teachers’ training practice, equipment of educational institutions, and other factors. The authors believe that contemporary risks in education, connected with intervention of information technologies, can be managed through computer literacy of participants in the educational process, and it might become a sort of a counterbalance for computer addiction.

General Information

Keywords: computer addiction, computer literacy, education paradigm shift, the intervention of ICT, the perception of Internet technologies in education, psychological motives of addiction.

Journal rubric: Social Psychology

Article type: review article


For citation: Ermolova Т.V., Litvinov A.V., Florova N.B. Computer addiction and computer literacy: two sides of the same process [Elektronnyi resurs]. Sovremennaia zarubezhnaia psikhologiia = Journal of Modern Foreign Psychology, 2017. Vol. 6, no. 4, pp. 46–55. DOI: 10.17759/jmfp.2017060405. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


  1. Informatsionnye i kommunikatsionnye tekhnologii v obrazovanii: monografiya [Information and communication technologies in education: monograph]. Badarcha Dendeva (ed.). Moscow: IITO YuNESKO, 2013. 320 p. (In Russ.).
  2. Kazhdyi vtoroi rebenok v internete v gruppe riska (interv'yu professora kafedry psikhologii lichnosti fakul'teta psikhologii MGU im. M.V. Lomonosova Galiny Soldatovoi) [Elektronnyi resurs]. Available at: (Accessed 20.12.2017). (In Russ.).
  3. Kochetkov N.V. Sotsial'no-psikhologicheskie aspekty zavisimosti ot onlain-igr i metodika ee diagnostiki [Socio-psychological aspects of dependence on online games and the methodology for its diagnosis]. Sotsial'naya psikhologiya i obshchestvo [Social psychology and society], 2016, vol. 7, no. 3, pp. 148–163. doi:10.17759/sps.2016070311 (In Russ.; Abstr. in Engl.).
  4. Kholmogorova A.B. et al. Obshchenie v internete i sotsial'naya trevozhnost' u podrostkov iz raznykh sotsial'nykh grupp [Communication on the Internet and social anxiety among adolescents from different social groups] [Elektronnyi resurs]. Konsul'tativnaya psikhologiya i psikhoterapiya [Consultative psychology and psychotherapy], 2015, vol. 23, no. 4, pp. 102–129. Available at: (Accessed 20.12.2017). (In Russ.; Abstr. in Engl.).
  5. Razmytoe pokolenie [Blurred generation]. Ogonek [Light], 2017, no. 5, pp. 4–4. (In Russ.).
  6. Soldatova G.U., Shlyapnikov V.N., Zhurina M.A. Evolyutsiya onlain-riskov: itogi pyatiletnei raboty linii pomoshchi «Deti onlain» [Evolution of online risks: the results of the five-year work of the help line "Children online"] [Elektronnyi resurs]. Konsul'tativnaya psikhologiya i psikhoterapiya [Consultative psychology and psychotherapy], 2015, vol. 23, no. 3, pp. 50–66. Available at: (Accessed 20.12.2017). (In Russ.; Abstr. in Engl.).
  7. Ekspert o detyakh «v virtuale»: internet stal sposobom zhizni (interv'yu prezidenta tvorcheskogo ob"edineniya «Yunpress», doktora pedagogicheskikh nauk Sergeya Tsymbalenko) [Expert on children "in the virtual": the Internet has become a way of life (interview of the president of the creative association "Yongpress", doctor of pedagogical sciences Sergey Tsymbalenko)] [Elektronnyi resurs]. RIA Novosti [RIA News]. Available at: (Accessed 20.12.2017). (In Russ.).
  8. Yang K. Klinicheskie aspekty internet-zavisimogo povedeniya [Clinical aspects of Internet-dependent behavior] [Elektronnyi resurs]. Meditsinskaya psikhologiya v Rossii: elektronnyi nauchnyi zhurnal [Medical psychology in Russia: an electronic scientific journal], 2015, no. 4 (33). Available at: (Accessed 20.12.2017). (In Russ.).
  9. Beard K. Internet addiction in children and adolescents. In Yarnall C.B. (ed.). Computer science research trends. Hauppauge, NY: Nova Science Publishers, 2008, pp. 59–70.
  10. Bulman G., Fairlie W. Technology and Education: Computers, Software, and the Internet. Handbook of the Economics of Education, 2016, vol. 5, pp. 239–280. doi:10.1016/B978-0-444-63459-7.00005-1
  11. Caplan S., High A. Beyond excessive use: The interaction between cognitive and behavioral symptoms of problematic Internet use. Communication Research Reports, 2006, vol. 23, no. 4, pp. 265–271. doi:10.1080/08824090600962516
  12. Dong G. et al. Diffusion tens or imaging reveals thalamus and posterior cingulate cortex abnormalities in internet gaming addicts. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 2012, vol. 46, no. 9, pp. 1212–1216. doi:10.1016/j.jpsychires.2012.05.015
  13. Griffiths M.D., Pontes H.M. Internet addiction disorder and internet gaming disorder are not the same. Journal of Addiction Research and Therapy, 2014, vol. 5, no. 4. doi:10.4172/2155-6105.1000e124
  14. Vink J.M. et al Heritability of compulsive Internet use in adolescents. Addiction biology, 2016, vol. 21, no. 2. doi:10.1111/adb.12218
  15. Hur M. Demographic, Habitual, and Socioeconomic Determinants of Internet Addiction Disorder: An Empirical Study of Korean Teenagers. Cyber Psychology Behavior, 2006, vol. 9, no. 5, pp. 514–525. doi:10.1089/cpb.2006.9.514
  16. IEA International Computer and Information Literacy Study (ICILS) [Elektronnyi resurs]. Available at: (Accessed 20.12.2017). (In Russ.).
  17. Lane A.E., Ziviani J.M. Factors influencing skilled use of the computer mouse by school-aged children. Computers & Education, 2010, vol. 55, no. 3, pp. 1112–1122. doi:10.1016/j.compedu.2010.05.008
  18. Montag C., Reuter M. (eds.). Internet Addiction Neuroscientific: Approaches and Therapeutical Implications Including Smartphone Addiction. Cham, Switzerland: Springer International Publishing Switzerland, 2015. 392 p. (Studies in Neuroscience, Psychology and Behavioral Economics). doi:10.1007/978-3-319-46276-9
  19. Bavelier D. et al. Neural bases of selective attention in action video game players. Vision Research, 2012, vol. 61, pp. 132–143. doi:10.1016/j.visres.2011.08.007
  20. Nissenbaum H., Walker D. Will computers dehumanize education? A grounded approach to values at risk. Technology in Society, 1988, vol. 20, no. 3, pp. 237–273. doi:10.1016/S0160-791X(98)00011-6
  21. Ronimus M., Lyytinen H. Is School a Better Environment than Home for Digital Game-Based Learning? The Case of GraphoGame. HumanTechnology, 2015, vol. 11 (2), pp. 123–147. doi:10.17011/ht/urn.201511113637
  22. Ruthven K., Hennessy S., Brindley S. Teacher representations of the successful use of computer-based tools and resources in secondary-school English, mathematics and science. Teaching and Teacher Education, 2004, vol. 20, no. 3, pp. 259–275.
  23. Sarzała D. Сyberspace as a source of deviant behavior of youth - symptoms and prevention. American Scientific Journal, 2016, no. 1(1), pp. 4–7. Available at: (Accessed 20.12.2017).
  24. Sariyska R. et al. Self-esteem, personality and Internet addiction: a cross-cultural comparison study. Personality and Individual Differences, 2014, vol. 61–62, pp. 28–33. doi:10.1016/j.paid.2014.01.001
  25. Sherman L.W. Cooperative Learning and Computer-Supported Intentional Learning Experiences. In Wolfe Ch.R. (ed.) Learning and Teaching on the World Wide Web. San Diego, Calif.: Academic Press, 2001, pp. 113–130.
  26. Tapscott D. Grown up digital: How the net generation is changing your world. New York: McGraw-Hil, 2008. 288 p.
  27. Montag C. et al. The role of the CHRNA4 gene in internet addiction: a case-control Study. Journal of Addictive Medicine, 2012, vol. 6, no. 3, pp. 191–195. doi:10.1097/ADM.0b013e31825ba7e7
  28. Allison C. et al. The Web in education. Computer Networks, 2012, vol. 56, no. 18, pp. 3811–3824. doi:10.1016/j.comnet.2012.09.017
  29. Trust Daniel T. et al. «Together we are better»: Professional learning networks for teachers. Computers & Education, 2016, vol. 102, pp. 15–34. doi:10.1016/j.compedu.2016.06.007
  30. Young K. Pathological Internet Use: A case that breaks the stereotype. Psychological Reports, 1996. vol. 79 (3 Pt 1) , pp. 899–902. doi:10.2466/pr0.1996.79.3.899
  31. Young K. S Cognitive-behavioral therapy with internet addicts: treatment outcomes and implications. Cyber Psychology Behaviour, 2007, vol. 10, no. 5), pp. 671–679. doi:10.1089/cpb.2007.9971
  32. Yu Z., Zhao Z. A report on treating Internet addiction disorder with cognitive behavior therapy. International Journal of Psychology, 2004, vol. 39, no. 5–6, pp. 407–407.
  33. Zong G. Developing preservice teachers' global understanding through computer-mediated communication technology. Teaching and Teacher Education, 2009, vol. 25, no. 5, pp. 617–625. doi:10.1016/j.tate.2008.09.016

Information About the Authors

Тatiana V. Ermolova, PhD in Psychology, Head of the Chair of Foreign and Russian Philology, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Alexander V. Litvinov, PhD in Education, professor of the chair of foreign and Russian philology, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, associate professor at Foreign Languages Department at the Facultyof Economics (RUDN University), Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Nina B. Florova, PhD in Biology, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:



Total: 2053
Previous month: 14
Current month: 4


Total: 1006
Previous month: 1
Current month: 0