Network Analysis of the Relationship between Personality Traits and Online Behaviour in Adolescents and Young Adults: A Research on Dota 2 Players



The article presents the results of a correlation analysis of the influence of Dota-2 players’ personal characteristics on their behavior in the virtual space. The analysis is based on the data, received in the course of a series of experiments conducted by the Center for Interdisciplinary Research on Contemporary Childhood in Moscow State University of Psychology and Education in 2015-2023. Research methods include the Q-Sort technique by W. Stephenson, the Butler-Haigh “Real and Ideal Test”, the Role Conflict Questionnaire developed by O.V. Rubtsova, and Adolescent Egocentrism Scale (AES) by R. Enright. The sample includes 103 active players of MOBA Dota-2 aged 14—25. The paper discusses statistical correlations, in particular, those identified on the basis of a network analysis of partial correlations. The analysis suggests that such factors as role incompatibility and the need for role-playing experience may be manifested in virtual play activity and partly determine the specifics of its implementation by adolescents and young adults.

General Information

Keywords: computer games, play activity, virtual reality, adolescence, role conflict, partial correlations, network analysis

Journal rubric: Developmental Psychology

Article type: scientific article


Funding. The reported study was funded by state task of the Ministry of Education of the Russian Federation project number 073-00038-23-05 dated 02.06.2023.

Received: 08.06.2023


For citation: Rubtsova O.V., Artemenkov S.L., Panfilova A.S., Tokarchuk A.M. Network Analysis of the Relationship between Personality Traits and Online Behaviour in Adolescents and Young Adults: A Research on Dota 2 Players. Psikhologicheskaya nauka i obrazovanie = Psychological Science and Education, 2023. Vol. 28, no. 4, pp. 5–19. DOI: 10.17759/pse.2023280401. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


  1. Ageev N.Ya., Tokarchuk Yu.A., Tokarchuk A.M., Gavrilova E.V. Svyaz' tsifrovykh tekhnologii s razvitiem kognitivnykh i kommunikativnykh protsessov podrostkov i yunoshei: obzor empiricheskikh issledovanii [Elektronnyi resurs] [Communication of digital technologies with the development of cognitive and communicative processes of adolescents and young men: a review of empirical research]. Psikhologo-pedagogicheskie issledovaniya = Psychological and pedagogical research, 2023, Vol. 15, no. 1, pp. 37–55. DOI: 10.17759/psyedu.2023150103 (In Russ.)
    2. Artemenkov S.L. Uporyadochennye seti chastnykh korrelyatsii v psikhologicheskikh issledovaniyakh [Ordered networks of partial correlations in psychological research]. Modelirovanie i analiz dannykh = Modeling and data analysis, 2021, Vol. 11, np. 2, pp. 31–50. DOI:10.17759/mda.2021110202 (In Russ.)
    3. Artemenkov S.L. Problemy postroeniya i analiza uporyadochennykh setei chastnykh korrelyatsii v psikhologicheskikh issledovaniyakh [Problems of construction and analysis of ordered networks of partial correlations in psychological research]. Modelirovanie i analiz dannykh = Modeling and data analysis, 2021, Vol. 11, no. 3, pp. 36–56. DOI:10.17759/mda.2021110303 (In Russ.)
    4. Kochetkov N.V. Internet-zavisimost' i zavisimost' ot komp'yuternykh igr v trudakh otechestvennykh psikhologov [Internet addiction and dependence on computer games in the works of Russian psychologists]. Sotsial'naya psikhologiya i obshchestvo = Social psychology and society, 2020, Vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 27-54. (In Russ.)
    5. Rubtsova O.V. Rolevoe eksperimentirovanie v podrostkovom vozraste: primenenie dramy dlya konstruirovaniya zony blizhaishego razvitiya [Role experimentation in adolescence: the use of drama to construct the zone of proximal development]. Kul'turno-istoricheskaya psikhologiya = Cultural-historical psychology, 2021, Vol. 17, no. 2, pp. 105–113. DOI:10.17759/chp.2021170210
    6. Rubtsova O.V. Rolevoe eksperimentirovanie podrostkov v kontekste idei L.S. Vygotskogo: deyatel'nostnaya tekhnologiya «Mul'timedia-teatr» [Role experimentation of teenagers in the context of L.S. Vygotsky: activity technology "Multimedia theater"]. Kul'turno-istoricheskaya psikhologiya = Cultural-historical psychology, 2023, Vol. 19, no. 2, pp. 61–69. DOI: 10.17759/chp.2023190208
    7. Rubtsova O.V., Panfilova A.S., Artemenkov S.L. Issledovanie vzaimosvyazi lichnostnykh osobennostei igrokov podrostkovogo i yunosheskogo vozrasta s ikh povedeniem v virtual'nom prostranstve (na primere gruppovoi komp'yuternoi igry «Dota 2») [Study of the relationship between the personal characteristics of adolescent and youth players and their behavior in the virtual space (on the example of the group computer game "Dota 2")]. Psikhologicheskaya nauka i obrazovanie = Psychological Science and Education, 2018, Vol. 23, no. 1, pp. 137—148. DOI: 10.17759/pse.2018230112
    8. Rubtsova O.V., Poskakalova T.A. Teatral'naya deyatel'nost' kak sredstvo razvitiya i obucheniya v podrostkovom vozraste: rezul'taty empiricheskogo issledovaniya [Theatrical activity as a means of development and education in adolescence: the results of an empirical study]. Psikhologicheskaya nauka i obrazovanie = Psychological Science and Education, 2020, Vol. 25, no. 6, pp. 144–156. DOI: 10.17759/pse.2020250612
    9. Ryabova T.V. Struktura i vozrastnaya dinamika fenomena egotsentrizma u podrostkov i vzroslykh [Structure and age dynamics of the phenomenon of egocentrism in adolescents and adults]. Avtoreferat diss. na soiskanie uchenoi stepeni k.p.n. MGU [Abstract of diss. for the degree of Ph.D. Moscow State University]. Moscow, 2001, 266 p. (In Russ.)
    10. Semikasheva I.A., Tarasov R.B. Psikhologicheskie aspekty vliyaniya komp'yuternykh igr na psikhiku podrostkov [Psychological aspects of the influence of computer games on the psyche of adolescents]. V sbornike: Novaya nauka: istoriya stanovleniya, sovremennoe sostoyanie, perspektivy razvitiya. Sbornik statei Mezhdunarodnoi nauchno-prakticheskoi konferentsii. V 2-kh chastyakh. [In the collection: New science: history of formation, current state, development prospects. Collection of articles of the International scientific-practical conference. In 2 parts] Ufa, 2021, pp. 160-162. (In Russ.)
    11. Soldatova G.V., Teslavskaya O.I. Videoigry v fokuse nauki [Video games in the focus of science]. Deti v informatsionnom obshchestve = Children in the information society, 2017, no. 27, pp. 24-35. (In Russ.)
    12. Sunnatova R.I. Uvlechennost' podrostkov komp'yuternymi igrami i znachimye vzroslye. V knige: Vozmozhnosti i riski tsifrovoi sredy. Sbornik materialov VII Vserossiiskoi nauchno-prakticheskoi konferentsii po psikhologii razvitiya (chteniya pamyati L.F. Obukhovoi). Moskva, 2019. pp. 413-417. (In Russ.)
    13. Sunnatova R.I. Lichnostnyi resurs kak uslovie preduprezhdeniya riska komp'yuternoi zavisimosti [Adolescents' passion for computer games and significant adults]. V sbornike: Ekopsikhologicheskie issledovaniya-6: ekologiya detstva i psikhologiya ustoichivogo razvitiya. Sbornik nauchnykh statei [In the book: Opportunities and risks of the digital environment. Collection of materials of the VII All-Russian Scientific and Practical Conference on Developmental Psychology (readings in memory of L.F. Obukhova)], Moscow, 2020. pp. 495-499. (In Russ.)
    14. Bayraktar F., & Amca H. Interrelations between virtual-world and realworld activities: Comparisons of genders, age groups, and pathological and nonpathological internet users. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 2012. Vol. 15. pp. 263–269. DOI:
    15. Borders J.B. Relationship between personality and video game preference (Unpublished master’s thesis). California State University, Sacramento, CA, 2012. URL: 18.05.2023).
    16. DOTABUFF. Dota 2 Statistics, 2022. URL: (Accessed: 10.04.2023).
    17. Dota 2 Wiki. Role, 2022. URL: (Accessed: 10.04.2023).
    18. ESA Entertainment software association. 2021-essential-facts-about-the-video-game-industry. URL: (Accessed: 11.05.2023).
    19. Ferguson C.J., Colwell J., Mlacˇic´ B., Milas G., & Miklousˇic´ I. Personality and media influences on violence and depression in a cross-national sample of young adults: Data from Mexican-Americans, English and Croatians. Computers in Human Behavior, 2011. Vol. 27, pp. 1195–1200.
    20. Gentile D.A., Choo H., Liau A., Sim T., Li D., Fung D., & Khoo A. Pathological video game use among youths: A two-year longitudinal study. Pediatrics, 2011. Vol. 127, no. 2, pp. 319–329. DOI: 10.1542/peds.2010-1353.
    21. Graham L.T., & Gosling S.D. Personality profiles associated with different motivations for playing World of Warcraft. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 2013. Vol. 16, pp. 189–193. DOI:
    22. Granic I., Lobel A., & Engels R.C. The benefits of playing video games. The American psychologist, 2014. Vol. 69, no.1, pp. 66-78.
    23. Green C.S., & Bavelier D. Action video game modified visual selective attention. Nature, 2003. 423, pp. 534–537.
    24. Greenfield P.M., Brannon C., & Lohr D. Two-dimensional representation of movement through three-dimensional space: The role of video game expertise. Journal Applied Developmental Psychology, 1994. Vol. 15, pp. 87–103.
    25. Halbrook Y., O’Donnell A., Msetfi R. When and How Video Games Can Be Good: A Review of the Positive Effects of Video Games on Well-Being. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 2019. Vol. 14, pp. 1096-1104. DOI: 10.1177/1745691619863807.
    26. Hartmann T., & Klimmt C. The influence of personality factors on computer game choice. In P. Vorderer & J. Bryant (Eds.), Playing video games. Motives, responses, and consequences. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2006. pp. 115–131.
    27. Kebritchi M., Hirumi A., & Bai H. The effects of modern mathematics computer games on mathematics achievement and class motivation. Computers & Education, 2010. Vol. 55, pp. 427–443.
    28. Margolis A.A., Kuravsky L.S., Artemenkov S.L., Voitov V.K., Shepeleva E.A., Gavrilova E.V. Ermakov S.S. Analysis of Statistical Dependencies between Intellectual Characteristics and Gaming Ability, measured with the aid of a Computer Game. International Journal of Modeling, Simulation, and Scientific Computing, 2020. Vol. 11, no. 6 2050066 (22 pages) DOI:
    29. Nielsen S.E., Smith J.H., & Tosca S.J. Understanding video games: An essential introduction. New York, NY: Routledge, 2008.
    30. Park J., Song Y., & Teng C.I. Exploring the links between personality traits and motivations to play online games. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 2011. Vol. 14. pp. 747–751. DOI:
    31. Posso A. Internet Usage and Educational Outcomes Among 15-Year-Old Australian Students International Journal of Communication, 2016. Vol. 10, pp. 3851–3876.
    32. Quwaider M., Alabed A., Duwairi R. The Impact of Video Games on the Players Behaviors: A Survey. Procedia Computer Science, 2019. Vol. 151, pp. 575–582.
    33. Rubtsova O.V. Contemporary Adolescence through the Prism of the Cultural-Historical Theory: on the Issue of Experimenting with Roles. Kul'turno-istoricheskaya psikhologiya = Cultural-Historical Psychology, 2020. Vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 69–77. DOI: 10.17759/chp.2020160209.
    34. Seok S. & Boaventura DaCosta Predicting Video Game Behavior: An Investigation of the Relationship Between Personality and Mobile Game Play. Games and Culture, 2015. Vol. 10, no. 5, pp. 481-501.
    35. Worth N.C., & Book A.S. Personality and behavior in a massively multiplayer online role-playing game. Computers in Human Behavior, 2014. Vol. 38, pp. 322–330. DOI:
    36. Yuji H. Computer games and information-processing skills. Perceptual and Motor Skills, 1996. Vol. 83, pp. 643–647.

Information About the Authors

Olga V. Rubtsova, PhD in Psychology, Associate Professor of the Department of "Age Psychology named after prof .L.F. Obukhova" of the Faculty of "Psychology of Education", Head of the "Center for Interdisciplinary Studies of Modern Childhood", Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Sergei L. Artemenkov, PhD in Engineering, Professor, Head of the Department of Applied Informatics and Multimedia Technologies, Head of the Center of Information Technologies for Psychological Research of the Faculty of Information Technologies, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Anastasya S. Panfilova, PhD in Engineering, Researcher, Institute of Psychology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Andrey M. Tokarchuk, PhD in Engineering, Senior Researcher at the Laboratory for the Study of Cognitive and Communicative Processes in Adolescents and Young Men in solving game and educational tasks in digital environments, Moscow State University of Psychology & Education, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:



Total: 110
Previous month: 0
Current month: 110


Total: 26
Previous month: 0
Current month: 26